Top Line

Following the death of a 22-year-old at the hands of Iran’s “ethics police”, women-led protests erupted in several major towns and cities of Iran, who deemed her a violation of the country’s strict dress code for women.

Key Facts

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Over the past five days, anti-government protests – involving both women and men – have spread rapidly in dozens of towns and cities, including the capital Tehran.

Women protesters expressed anger On fire They have scarves on their heads – which they have to wear in public – and cut locks of their hair in social media posts or in public.

As the protests intensified, with protesters chanting for the death of Iran’s almighty supreme leader, growing anger has been directed towards the regime in Tehran. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his son Mojtaba Khamenek,

human rights group Blame At least six protesters have been killed by authorities as of Wednesday – while government officials have accused the protesters of killing three people, including a police officer.

In an attempt to avoid action by security forces, some are reportedly holding “flash protests” – quickly gathering and dispersing -CNN informed of,

according to a Video Shared by the BBC’s Persian news service, protesters in Tehran have painted a street sign for “Hijab Street” and named it “Mahasa”, after Mahsa Amini, whose death sparked protests. .

main background

Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman, was arrested by Iran's ethics police on September 13 during a visit to Tehran. He alleged that Amini was violating the public dress code for women, which requires her to cover her head with a hijab and wear loose-fitting. Clothes that cover their arms and legs. Witnesses say Mehsa was thrashed by the morality police soon after her arrest, following which she slipped into a three-day coma. united nations human rights office noted There were reports that Amini was "beaten on the head with sticks" and her head was "beaten" by a morality police vehicle. Police officials attributed Amini's condition to a heart attack and the 22-year-old died in hospital on 16 September. Iran's interior minister, Ahmed Wahidi, claimed that Amini had "previous physical problems", which her family categorically denied, saying she was healthy and fit. The anti-government demonstration is Iran's largest since 2019, when people took to the streets to protest a hike in gas prices.

important quotes

UN Acting High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada al-Nasif criticized Iranian officials and called for an independent investigation into Amini's death. in one official statementShe said: "The tragic death of Mahsa Amini and the allegations of torture and abuse should be promptly, impartially and effectively investigated by an independent competent authority," adding that "authorities must target, harass and Stop detaining those who don't follow hijab rules."

tangent line

Iran's ethics police - known as "Gasht-e Ershad" or Guidance Patrol - Established in 2005 to ensure that women in public places follow the official dress code. The Guidance Patrol deploys both male and female officers in various public places including malls, train stations, parks and city squares. Authorities are allowed to stop and detain women who do not adhere to the strict dress code.

Iran unrest: Women burn headscarf in anti-hijab demonstrations (BBC)

Hundreds of Iranian women burn their hijabs in protest against Mahsa Amini's death (CNN)

Protests in Iranian cities after custodial woman's death (new York Times)