We have seen in the last few weeks the great fanfare that has been made in Iran and around the world about the use of the hijab and the government’s violence towards Iranian women. With that in mind, the article has the duty to provide information and show you the reader what the histories of this are and what is happening in Iran today.
By Gabrielly Louise Padilha Silva – Youth Press Agency Brazil
Much is said about the violence of the Iranian government, and especially in recent weeks the case of Mahsa Amini has taken global proportions due to the cruelty of the state. The 22-year-old was arrested and later killed by the government of Iran for incorrectly wearing the hijab (Muslim religious garment for women) and was caught by “morality police” for showing a part of her hair.
According to the Muslim religion, the wearing of the hijab is mandatory for all women after their first menstrual period. Some reports on this obligation were given by Muslim women to the magazine Capricho [written by Isabella Otto, on August 21, 2021] as follows:
Carima: Various passages in the Quran, the Muslim holy book, and in the Hadiths, statements attributed to the prophet Mohammad , refer to the veil of the prophet’s wives, is mandatory from the first menarche on for women who follow Islam. The veil is a way of showing submission to God.
Mariam: The face and hands are some parts of the body that we can show, but in some interpretations and cultures, the woman who wears the niqab [clothing similar to the burqa, but with the eyes exposed, without the protection of the net, very common in Saudi Arabia and Yemen]. That is, God commanded Muslim women to cover themselves in submission to him and not to any man. However, the woman has free will and it is she who must choose.
Knowing that women have free will for the use of clothing, why does the government think women who don’t wear it are so wrong?
Iran’s history with women’s clothing is long and difficult for women who do not agree with the orders. The government uses parts of the Quran (Islamic holy book) and parts of the Hadith (testimonies of the Prophet Muhammad) to justify the policy, even though Muslim writing is not entirely clear whether women should wear the veil. Resistance to the mandatory wearing of the hijab was almost immediate. After Iranian Supreme Leader Aytollah Khomeini said that women should observe the Iranian dress code in 1979, they staged several protests, leading the ruler to say his comments were only a recommendation. However, the comment became law in 1983.
Iranian dress codes are strictly mandatory in the country and their enforcement is monitored by the “morality police”, who patrol the streets with vehicles, detaining people who are wearing “inappropriate”. As a form of protest, several Iranian women who are against the mandatory use of the hijab wear it in any way, without caring much for the imposed rules, for the government and society, even wearing them hanging around their head and also as a
scarf, on the shoulders. As reported by the news platform CNN and the website Monday Feelings.
Protests against the use of the garment happen sporadically, but due to the case of Mahsa Amini, the event became much better known, reaching the point of impacting and attracting the interest of many people, government officials and reporters across the globe.
For many, the hijab is a symbol of oppression. And if we look at it from the religious side, men and the government just don’t know how to interpret what is actually written in the Islamic holy books.
For days there have been cries such as: “Death to the dictator” and “to the Islamic Republic”. And the government responds with the most diverse attacks on the population, ranging from cutting off access to the internet so that news from the country is not published and for the people not to have access to information coming from the West, since in several countries there are protests against the Iranian government and the mourning of the young woman’s death. Since the young woman’s death, Amnesty International and the United Nations have reported the deaths, injuries and the number of people detained by the state.
“The evidence we have collected on the ground shows that security forces are firing metallic projectiles, which are used for hunting, at protesters and people on the street. Hundreds of women, children and men were injured and we saw horrible images of protesters with wounds in head, chest and stomach. The forces of intent to cause as much damage as possible”, reveals Raha Bahreini, an Iranian researcher and human rights lawyer at Amnesty International, in a report given to the digital information vehicle EuroNews.
From New York to Buenos Aires, and from the Argentine capital Turkey, all you hear about and all you see on the news is the case of the young Iranian woman killed by the “morality police”. When Mahsa Amini was detained by the government, witnesses and relatives claim that the young Kurdish girl was severely attacked by officials, being beaten several times in the region of the head. She later collapsed and was taken to a hospital in a coma on 16 September. Three days later, Mahsa died. The government said the young Iranian woman died of a heart attack, but the family claims she was in perfect health.
According to an Iranian activist who preferred to remain anonymous when talking to reporter Joshua Askew of the digital news outlet EuroNews, another problem with the current Iranian hijab policy is that the rule does not respect the different ways of dressing worn by various ethnic groups. and religious in Iran. “The Islamic government doesn’t even approve of the other types of hijab and traditional clothing in other ethnic groups,” she said. “They even oppress people who actually practice their religion.”
Iran is a very mixed society, containing Persians, Kurds, Azerbaijanis, Lurus, Gila Kis, Arabs, Baluchis and Turkmens. Each has their own traditional outfit and wears the hijab in different ways, alternating colors, patterns and styles.
However, the Mahsa case was a watershed moment in this idea that the government preached, that the reason women are detained is a lack of respect for Iranian culture. The problem with the hijab in Iran is not cultural; it is political, as several women were arrested because of their clothing and not because of their disrespect for culture.
Activists say they are hopeful that something will change, even if it is very difficult, and that Mahsa Amini was an opening of the gates of hatred towards the country’s government. As reported to EuroNews.