Every year, as the weather warms up, the Iranian morality police come out in full force to patrol the streets and stop women they judge as being dressed too seductively.
Despite a new, more moderate president, our Iranian Observers expect this summer’s crackdown to be even harsher than in previous years, because the country’s hardliners have launched a massive campaign to denounce examples of “immodest” dress.
Over the past few weeks, hardliner-affiliated websites and media outlets have published strange photographs of women in a variety of situations considered improper.
One shows a woman driving a motorcycle – which, while not illegal, is a rare sight in Iran – who supposedly caused a traffic accident because she was “too distracting”.
Another, reportedly taken in the streets of Karaj, a city just west of Tehran, shows a woman walking around topless.
There is no mention of whether the woman may have had any mental health issues, nor have local residents confirmed such a sighting. A local prayer leader was quoted in hardliner media as demanding that action be taken against these immoral acts, which he attributed to the negative influence of Western culture.
Initially published on France24 on 04/30/2014
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