Firebrand cleric Ahmad Alamolhoda

Iranian Cleric Calls Hijab Defiance Treason

Wednesday, 04/10/2024

A firebrand senior cleric has equated hijab defiance with treason amid nationwide rebellion against the Islamic dress codes of Iran’s theocratic rulers.

Ahmad Alamolhoda, who is close to Iran's ruler Ali Khamenei and is the father-in-law of President Ebrahim Raisi, remarked on Wednesday, "Those women who improperly wear hijab should be aware that they are collaborating with an enemy who has targeted not only Islam but also the soil of the country."

The Iranian government has long drawn parallels between dissent and supporting ‘enemy’ nations, usually referring to the US and Israel. Hundreds of Iranians have been arrested on trumped up charges of collaborating with the enemy and espionage while the regime cracks down on all forms of dissent as its legitimacy crumbles.

Alamolhoda’s comments come in the wake of a speech by Ayatollah Khamenei, stressing the significance of compulsory hijab for women as the state fails to stem the tide of disobedience, stemming back to the 2022 Women, Life, Freedom uprising.

Even legislative efforts surrounding hijab have been met with contention. A bill, initially proposed by the government and later revised by hardline factions in parliament, has faced scrutiny for proposing penalties, including heavy fines, for women not adhering to the dress code.

Despite efforts to pass the bill, it has not been approved by the Guardian Council yet, which has requested amendments from parliamentarians.

The head of the Judiciary and Legal Commission of the Parliament, Mousa Ghazanfarabadi, detailed the latest criticisms from the Guardian Council on Tuesday saying that final amendments will be made in the coming week.

International scrutiny over Iran's mandatory hijab laws has intensified, with human rights experts from the United Nations expressing concerns over systematic discrimination against women.

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