Fearing another spike in popular protests in Iran, the mullahs’ misogynous regime is launching a new wave of arbitrary arrests to clamp down on youths and particularly women taking advantage of the arrival of summer and harassing women under the pretext of not properly observing the veil.
Citing mullah Hojjatollah Zaker, a cultural and social deputy in the Center running the Affairs of Mosques, the state-run Fars news agency affiliated with the IRGC, wrote on June 16, 2020: “As the weather is warming, the market for vulgarity is also booming. Women and girls are seen across the city and sometimes behind the wheels with disgusting clothes, and sometimes without the veil (covering their hair)…Negligence of the 26 agencies in charge has also had a great impact because none of them have pursued enforcement of the laws written in this regard… We hope that at the end of spring, the agencies in charge would wake up from their winter sleep after several years and figure out a solution for this predicament.”
On the same day, Vali Ghanbari-Rad, deputy Revolutionary Prosecutor of Khorasan Razavi Province, announced that a large number of women had been arrested in this province for “posting photos on Instagram without covering their hair.” The state-run Khabar Fori website cited Ghanbari-Rad as saying: “After reports submitted by unsung agents (the regime’s army of hackers and spies monitoring users on social media), we opened a case and began investigating the case in collaboration with the Security and Intelligence Police of this province. The goal was to confront unrestrained and lewd behavior in the Instagram… Many of the main leaders who published photos on social media without wearing the veil were identified and arrested. Some of them were sent to prison after issuing penal sentences for them. Some were freed on bail and their cases were sent to court to issue them sentences.”
The IRGC’s news agency, Fars, also hosted a so-called round table “to examine the situation of Hejab and Islamic decency in universities.”
Fars cited Maryam Akhoundi, member of the central council and of the women’s office in the Students’ Islamic Association in Amir Kabir University, and wrote: “We are witnessing some sort of laxity in universities… We see that unfortunately in some cases, there is only a monitoring approach. The cases are dealt with leniency and deference…”
“We must not wait for university officials to take action,” Akhoundi declared, thus calling on Bassij agents in universities to directly take action against female students.
Zeinab Sharifi, head of the student Bassij at the all-woman Shariati University, also revealed during this round table discussion, “The dignity of people (i.e. young women) is not respected by the university’s Security Department.” (Fars, June 13, 2020)
Obviously, these suppressive measures will only add to social outrage and particularly to the fury of women and youth who have been organizing in resistance units and cells to topple the mullahs’ oppressive regime through popular protests and uprisings.
National Council of Resistance of Iran – Women’s Committee
June 22, 2020