Iran's exiled Prince Reza Pahlavi says as long as Iranian women are not free, Iran will not be free, calling on men to be in the front lines in this struggle to support women. 

In a tweet on Monday, Pahlavi highlighted “43 years of Iranian women’s fight to reclaim their obvious and basic rights,” especially the freedom to choose what to wear. 

“Iranian men should also stand shoulder to shoulder with women in the front lines of this struggle,” he added in his post that ended with a hashtag to support Iranian women who are protesting against the compulsory Islamic dress code or hijab. 

Social media posts from Iran indicate many women left home Tuesday without hijab in response to calls from activists to defy the government’s forced dress code.

Women’s rights and political activists had called for civil disobedience on July 12 with the hashtag of ‘No2Hijab’ in response to a government announcement for a day of ‘hijab rallies’ at stadiums and other venues “to honor, celebrate, and promote” the Islamic notion of the hijab (cover) for women.

For the past few weeks the government has increased harassment of women for their insufficient hijab and many have been detained by special police patrols. This has led to more tension amid economic hardship for 90 percent of the population on fixed income, while inflation has reached 55 percent and food prices have risen by more than 80 percent, according to May-June official reports.

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