Iran’s parliament is about to pass a law which will obligate anyone who wants to keep a dog as a pet to apply for a special permit from some special committees.

Mojtaba Zonnour (Zolnour), a member of parliament’s foreign policy and national security committee, said on Saturday that if the so-called "Protection of public rights against dangerous animals" bill is approved, applicants for keeping dogs should request an official permit from the committees, which will be comprised of representatives of the prosecutor’s office and other government agencies such as the governors’ offices and municipalities. 

The hardliner lawmaker added that these committees will review the conditions of the applicants to issue the necessary permits. 

The representative of the religious city of Qom noted that the security and military apparatus of the Islamic Republic, including the police, the Intelligence Ministry and the Revolutionary Guards were involved in devising the outlines of this plan.

The parliament proposed the legislation late in 2021 by claiming a dog had killed children in a Tehran park. But in fact, the real reason for Iran’s conservatives is that keeping dogs is a symbol of Westernization, which they try to prevent. Although the bill names all kinds of pets, from dogs and cats to turtles, snakes, hamsters, rabbits and even crocodiles and monkeys, the main concern of parliamentarians is dogs, since dogs are considered impure in Islam.

Keeping dogs, always common in Iran’s rural areas and on farms, has only in recent years become popular in urban areas despite occasional police crackdowns. 


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