Friday, February 02, 2018

Hijabs held aloft as Iranian women protest compulsory cover-up

To read the entire item at the Jerusalem Post site, kindly click on this link:

http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Iran-News/Hijabs-held-aloft-as-Iranian-women-protest-compulsory-cover-up-540438

HIJABS HELD ALOFT AS IRANIAN WOMEN PROTEST COMPULSORY COVER-UP

BY THOMSON REUTERS FOUNDATION
 
 FEBRUARY 1, 2018

As images of Iranian women holding their hijabs aloft spread on social media, an influential activist said women are symbolically rejecting the wider "interference of religion" in their lives.

"We are fighting against the most visible symbol of oppression," said Masih Alinejad, who hosts the website My Stealthy Freedom where women in Iran post photos of themselves without hijabs.

Under Iran's Islamic law, imposed after the 1979 revolution, women are obliged to cover their hair with a scarf, known as a hijab, and wear long, loose-fitting clothes. Violators are publicly admonished, fined or arrested.

"These women are saying, 'It is enough - it is the 21st century and we want to be our true selves,'" the Iranian activist told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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Although the wider anti-government demonstrations have ended, women across Iran are "fed up" and continue to protest against "the interference of religion in our personal lives," said the activist.

Alinejad said she is now flooded with videos and photos of women imitating the viral video and she shares them on the My Stealthy Freedom Twitter account and Facebook page.

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To campaign against the obligatory wearing of headscarves, Alinejad last year encouraged women to take videos or photos of themselves wearing white and upload them on social media with the hashtag #whitewednesdays.

The #whitewednesdays campaign is part of a larger online movement started three years ago by Alinejad, a journalist who has lived in self-imposed exile since 2009. She has received death threats since her campaigning started.

"I wake up everyday with the voices of these women in my inbox," said Alinejad from New York where she now lives.


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