WASHINGTON: The United States has condemned the arrests in Iran of at least 29 individuals “for exercising their human rights and fundamental freedoms by standing up against the compulsory hijab.”
In a February 2 statement, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the US is supporting Iranians who are protesting the dress code enforced following the 1979 revolution.
The dress code dictates that women’s hair and body must be covered in public.
“People should be free to choose the clothes they wear and practice their faith as they desire. Depriving individuals of this choice undermines their autonomy and dignity,” Nauert said.
Iranian police said on February 1 that they had arrested 29 women who removed their headscarves in a protest against a law requiring women to wear the Islamic veils in public.
The police claimed the women had been “tricked” into removing their headscarves by a propaganda campaign being conducted by Iranians living abroad.
In past days, a growing number of Iranian women have taken a stand against the forced hijab by removing their headscarf in public and waving them on sticks.