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Iran’s hijab protesters remain defiant in prison: rights group

By Rudaw 6/2/2018
Photo shared on social media of Narges Hosseini protesting the mandatory hijab. Photo: CHRI
Photo shared on social media of Narges Hosseini protesting the mandatory hijab. Photo: CHRI
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Though facing potentially lengthy prison terms, women arrested for removing their headscarf have refused to express penitence for what is an illegal act in Iran.

“Ms. Hosseini did not even appear in court to express remorse for her action. She said she objects to the forced hijab and considers it her legal right to express her protest,” Nasrin Sotoudeh, lawyer for Narges Hosseini, 32, told the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI). 

She is facing a possible 10 years in prison and up to 74 lashes on charges including openly committing a sinful act, violating public prudency, and encouraging immorality or prostitution, according to the rights group. She was arrested on January 29 and is unable to pay the $135,000 bail set by the court. 

Hosseini is “not prepared to say she’s sorry,” her lawyer said. 

She is one of at least 29 women arrested for protesting the country’s mandatory head covering law. The women have removed their headscarves and held them aloft on Tehran’s Revolution Street. Their images have been widely shared on social media with the hashtag #GirlsOfRevolutionStreet.

Men have also joined the protest, in solidarity. 

They were inspired by Vida Movahed who was pictured holding her headscarf like a flag during widespread anti-government protests in late December.

According to a report released by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday, nearly half the country is opposed to the mandatory hijab. 

According to the three-year old-report, 49.2 percent of respondents in a poll believe that the decision to wear the headscarf is a private matter. 

In a televised news conference on Tuesday, addressing the recent anti-government protests that were largely rooted in economic concerns, Rouhani said people have the right to protest.

“Yes people have criticisms about the economic situation and yes they're right, but they are also criticising the social situation, foreign relations, and the political situation. The people have a lot to say and we should listen to them," he said.


duroi | 7/2/2018
Iran will eventually make Hijab optional, like in Turkey, considering that there is no verse in Quran making it obligatory for both Moslem and non-Moslem women. If they make it optional only for non-Moslems then 70% of women in Iran will convert to another religion.
Eugene | 7/2/2018
Women should be women..keep the head covered..hajib a must at religious events? Long-hair for woman...short-hair for the man.......
mynewsclips | 7/2/2018
The problem is not these women but with Shia Islam which is full of Mullah hypocrisy, superstition, human divinity, idol worshipping and compulsory fake grief in Muharram which has nothing to do with real Islam hence the rebellion by people.
Matt Dan | 7/2/2018
Iran will pass more laws supporting wearing Hijab, but the Hijab in Iran is not a Hijab.
Amama Banana | 28/2/2018
@duroi is an infidel! @mynewsclips whores like you and them deserve jail! Your crusade against Shia islam is shameful you christian troll! Long live the Islamic Republic of Iran!

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