Iran has cracked down on women violating its compulsory headscarf decree, arresting at least 29 individuals, according to Iranian media, and drawing criticism from activists and rights groups.
Tasnim news agency reported on Friday that 29 women had been arrested, and quoted Tehran police as saying that the detainees were arrested for “disturbing public security”.
It was unclear where else arrests had been made, as protests have spread from the capital to other areas, including the ancient cities of Esfahan and Shiraz.
The mandatory headscarf, or hijab, has been in place in Iran since 1979, after the Iranian revolution and the installation of Ayatollah Khomeini as Supreme Leader.
Over the years, hundreds of thousands of Iranian women have protested against the law.
One Iranian woman, wearing the traditional black outer garment, or chador, was seen standing on top of a utility box in the corner of a busy Iranian street expressing solidarity.
Omid Memarian, a US-based Iranian journalist who was once imprisoned in Iran, wrote on social media that the fight against forced hijab “is not about whether the hijab is good or bad. It’s about choice and equality. It’s about dignity”.
So far, the protest still lacks momentum for Iran’s authorities to consider amending the hijab law, said Dagres.