Anti-Hijab Civil Disobedience Leads to Arrest of Iranian Women

Amid an intense campaign of the Iranian government on the proper and strict wearing of the hijab, arrests of protesters, mainly women activists, have also started to increase.

Under Iran’s 1980 Islamic Sharia law, women are obliged to cover or disguise their figures by wearing long, loose-fitting clothes, ensuring that this also covers their hair. Women who violate this dress code are met with public rebuke, fines, and even arrests.

Despite this, voices of women echoing over this issue, including on social media, have become more prominent, especially on July 12, during their ‘No2 Hijab’ campaign. Many women have posted photos and videos of them removing their hijab, with some posted as “The good feeling of freedom - NO2Hijab”.

The peak of these arrests happened following the call of women on their rights. Accordingly, there has been a rise in harassment among women for “improper” wearing of the hijab.

A firm warning over those disobeying hijab rules was announced. Ahmad Vahidi, the interior minister, said that the government’s Special Unit would take action against those “breaking rules.” Some called hijab violators “Satan’s troop,” and some alleged these women committed ‘Moharebeh,’ meaning “enemy of God,” identified as a serious crime based on the Sharia.

One of the women arrested is twenty-eight-year-old Rashno, a writer and editor. She was detained on July 16 following a viral video about her and a woman named Rayeheh Rabi’i, who argued inside a city bus over hijab rules enforcement.

In the video, Rabi’i, wearing a black ‘chador’, was seen shouting at Rashno, who removed her hijab inside the bus.

The argument between the two became panicky, which triggered other passengers to intervene and, as filmed, forced Rabi’i out of the bus.

Rabi’i, for her part, had secured a copy of the video and threatened to relay this to the Revolutionary Guards.

Rabi’i received praises for what she did, particularly from some government officials, including the head of Islamic Development.

Later that day, Arash Sadeghi, civil rights activist, and ex-political prisoner, said that Rashno was nabbed following this altercation with Rabi’i.

Prior to Rashno’s arrest, Souri Babai Chegini, a civil activist and one of the women who took her hijab off during the nationwide civil disobedience campaign on July 12, was arrested. Her husband, Mohammad-Reza Morad-Behrouzi, alleged that at least eight agents, including two women, had arrested Chegini, taken the cellular phones of their children, and menaced their 13-year-old daughter.

Melika Qaragozlu, another woman who unveiled her hijab and posted this on social media, was also arrested.

In February 2021, Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, issued a fatwa stating that women in cartoons and animated features must be depicted wearing a hijab, according to the country’s Tasnim News Agency.

If you like our posts, subscribe to the Atheist Republic newsletter to get exclusive content delivered weekly to your inbox. Also, get the book "Why There is No God" for free.

Click Here to Subscribe

Donating = Loving

Heart Icon

Bringing you atheist articles and building active godless communities takes hundreds of hours and resources each month. If you find any joy or stimulation at Atheist Republic, please consider becoming a Supporting Member with a recurring monthly donation of your choosing, between a cup of tea and a good dinner.

Or make a one-time donation in any amount.