Iran, Repression of Unveiled Women: A Collective Camera Installation

Iran, Repression of Unveiled Women: A Collective Camera Installation

The crackdown on women in Iran continues. Iranian authorities have begun installing cameras in public places to identify women who violate the obligation to wear the hijab. Police said the women identified would receive a message about the consequences of not wearing a headscarf. Police said the initiative should help prevent “resistance to the headscarf law”.

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After Mohsa Amini died on September 16 in the custody of the morality police in Tehran, the country went through months of protests led by women, which were later bloodily suppressed. Since then, more and more women have stopped covering their heads with headscarves, especially in big cities, despite the risk of arrest. A police statement carried by state news agencies said the system was using so-called “smart” cameras and other tools to identify and send “documents and warning messages to violators of the headscarf law”. Police described the headscarf as “one of the foundations of the Iranian nation’s civilization” and urged restaurant and shop owners to abide by the rules through “diligent inspections”.

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Public attacks on uncovered women are not uncommon: Last week, a video of a man throwing yogurt at two uncovered women went viral on the Internet, and both women were later arrested under the veil law. The man was also arrested. But Iran’s chief judiciary, Gholamhossein Mohseni-Eje, warned that a widespread crackdown might not be the best way to encourage women to follow the rules. “Cultural problems must be solved by cultural means… If we want to solve these problems by arrest and imprisonment, the costs will increase and we will not see the desired effectiveness,” Al-Amin said.

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