The Guidance Patrol in Iran

           In the Islamic Republic of Iran, some women removed their veil in public to protest against power. Back in January, the center of Tehran was the corner of protests against the mandatory rule according to which women have to wear the veil in public. On January 29, a girl mounted on a high block. She took off her white veil and knotted it around a stick and gently stirred it for a few minutes. Around her wrist, she wore a green ribbon, the color of the protest movement in 2009, against the re-election of former populist president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005-2013). Not long after, her image spread on social networks. Elsewhere in Tehran and around Iran, other women have carried out the same action, this time with black and red scarves. Since the establishment of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1979, women have been required to cover their entire body except for their face and hands. A specific brigade, known as the Islamic Religious Police known as Guidance Patrol, ensures the “good respect” of this law. Stationed in the squares of Iranian cities, these police officers arrest women who are “badly veiled”, taking them to the station, where they will be photographed as criminals, and sometimes sentenced to pay a fee.

           As a Muslim, I find that this law is a pity. Wearing the veil shouldn’t be an obligation to any woman on earth. First, the veil is rather cultural than religious. Second, women should be free of wearing whatever they want. Third, this law is perpetuating stereotypes. Fourth, thank you again to Western hegemony as the Iranian revolution is a consequence of it. I could continue for hours… Anyway, I would like to salute these strong women as they are speaking for themselves and fighting for their rights. There is still a long path for our fight for gender equality, and hopefully, we will achieve equality some day. Don’t give up, each voice matters, we can do this! We don’t want to be oppressed anymore.



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