“The brutal maneuvers of the moral police that prevent women from choosing their clothes must be ended,” criticizes Mahtab, an Iranian with an orange scarf that shows her hair, on a Tehran street.
“I like to wear this veil as others prefer to wear a chador“, which covers the entire body, says this 22-year-old woman, a makeup artist by profession, in a wealthy neighborhood in the north of the iranian capital. “But the veil has to be an option, they don’t have to force us“ to take it, he adds.
A series of protests, which caused several deaths, broke out in Iran after the authorities announced on September 16 the death of Mahsa Aminiafter being arrested for carrying “inappropriate clothing“by the morality police, charged with enforcing a strict dress code for women.
According to the Iranian authorities, the young woman died of natural causes, but activists and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights they state that she was violently beaten on the head and against a police vehicle.
Mahtab She admits that she is afraid of this police unit, but nevertheless she has not changed her way of dressing or putting on her veil. These police “are useless,” she says.
In Iran, women are required to cover their hairand the morality police forbids them wear coats above the kneestight pants, jeans with holes or brightly colored clothing, among other restrictions.
Nazanine, a 23-year-old nurse, prefer not to risk. “Now I will be more vigilant about how I wear the veil, so as not to have problems,” he explains to AFP. But, as mahtabalso considers that this unit should be withdrawn from the streets since “it does not behave correctly”.
“I don’t understand why these police officers confront people when (…) all the women are veiled and decently dressed. If the police want to go further, then it is interference, ”estimates this woman, with a dark scarf that mixes with her hair.
The hostility towards these policemen, that they chase the slightest flaw in the outfits, it is evident, especially after the death of Mahsa Amini.
“With this new incident, people no longer call this unit ‘Gasht-e Ershad’ (orientation patrols) but ‘Ghatl-e Ershad’ (assassination orientation)”, says Reyhaneh, a 25 year old studentin the north of Tehran.
After this case, people also question “the effectiveness of the use of force“against women. “The use of the hijab should not be governed by a law”, this woman tells AFP with a beige veilfrom where the hair protrudes.
in the south of the capitalpoorer and more conservative, the use of chadors and dark clothing is predominant, compared to the more affluent north, where it is more frequent more casual clothing.
On Wednesday, after several days of protestsnormality returned to Tehran, and in the northern neighborhoods, the girls continued to wear the veil well back. Mahsa’s death Amini “It has saddened us. What happened shocked the whole society”, says Reyhaneh.
The morality police “I would have to be more lenient and less aggressive. The use of the veil is a personal matter and the woman has the right to dress as she wants”, she assures.
The death of Amini and the response of the Iranian security forces to the protests provoked international outcry and were condemned by the United Nations, the United States, France and other countries.
Finally, Kurdish rights group Hengaw -based in Norway- indicated on Wednesday that two other protesters, aged 16 and 23, had died during the early hours in the province of West Azerbaijan.
Hengaw also reported that about 450 people had been injured and that about 500 were arrestedsome figures that could not be contrasted with an independent source.
hengaw,Kurdish Rights Advocacy Group, it also reported that some 450 people had been injured and nearly 500 arrested. Photo: EFE.