Iranian officials adopt strict dress code for civil servants

2023-12-04 19:51:00, Kosova & Bota CNA
Iranian officials adopt strict dress code for civil servants
Illustrative photo

Iranian media reports that the governor of the central city, Qom, has issued a directive that compels female employees in government offices to adhere to strict Islamic dress codes, in particular to wear a black chador, and not to use makeup

The black chador is a garment for wrapping the head and upper body, leaving only the face uncovered.

The directive, first revealed by the Iranian human rights group Iran Watch's website, means the Islamic Republic has further tightened control over how women dress in the workplace.

The deputy governor of Qom, Abolghasem Moghimi Araghi, underlined in the instruction the need for female employees to adhere to the "laws of modesty and hijab".

The guidance was released at a time of heightened sensitivity and opposition to mandatory hijab laws.

Nationwide protests under the motto: "Women, Life, Freedom" have called for the abolition of dress codes, with Iranian women risking much in their quest for freedom and equality by standing at the front of the demonstrations.

The hijab, or Islamic headscarf, became compulsory for women and girls over the age of 9 in 1981, two years after the Islamic Revolution in Iran.

The decision had sparked protests which were quickly suppressed by the new authorities. Many women have broken the rules over the years and challenged officials' decisions about what clothes are acceptable.

Women have also launched campaigns against the discriminatory law, even though the state has put pressure on many of them and forced them to leave the country for security reasons.

Tensions have been rising in Iran over the hijab law since 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died in police custody in September 2022.

Amin's death, which came days after she was detained in Tehran by morality police for allegedly not wearing a hijab properly, sparked nationwide protests and the deaths of hundreds of protesters in the country.

Despite the long public outcry, on the anniversary of Amin's death, Iran's parliament approved an updated version of the law, which includes tougher penalties for violating the hijab law, including up to 10 years in prison.

In late October, anger boiled over again after another girl died after a confrontation with "morality" enforcers earlier that month in a Tehran subway.

Armita Garavand, 17, died after falling into a coma following the alleged confrontation on October 1. Some media suggested that she was attacked by the morality police, while others have said that the hijab guards are responsible./ Rel

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