Iranian police install cameras to identify women violating strict dress code

Authorities say those not wearing headscarf in public places will receive ‘warning text messages as to the consequences,’ as women increasingly defy ‘hijab law’

In this file photo taken on February 7, 2018, Iranian women wearing hijab walk down a street in the capital Tehran. (Atta Kenare/AFP)
In this file photo taken on February 7, 2018, Iranian women wearing hijab walk down a street in the capital Tehran. (Atta Kenare/AFP)

Iranian police have installed cameras in public places to identify women violating the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code, authorities said Saturday, according to the Reuters news agency.

The Islamic dress code, in place since the 1979 revolution, considers Islamic veiling or hijab, obligatory for any female above 13 in Iran and says they should cover themselves from head to toe while disavowing any figure-hugging dress.

Iranian police said the cameras would be used to identify unveiled women in public places and thoroughfares and later penalize them. Violators will receive “warning text messages as to the consequences,” said a statement carried by the Iranian judiciary’s Mizan news agency.

The statement said the move was aimed at “preventing resistance against the hijab law,” adding that such resistance tarnishes the country’s spiritual image and spreads insecurity, according to Reuters.

There has been an increasing number of women refusing to wear the mandatory hijab or headscarf, following the death in custody of Iranian Kurd Mahsa Amini in September 2022. Her death sparked months of protests after the 22-year-old was detained for an alleged breach of the strict dress code.

Hundreds of people were killed, including dozens of security personnel, and thousands were arrested in connection with what Iranian officials described as “riots” fomented by Israel and the West.

Iranians protest the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after she was detained by the morality police, in Tehran, October 1, 2022. (AP Photo/Middle East Images, File)

Hundreds of women have been seen unveiled in public places since the death of Amini, with some facing public rebuke, and others being arrested, fined, or jailed by authorities.

The police statement, according to Reuters, called on business owners to “seriously monitor the observance of societal norms with their diligent inspections.”

In late March, the head of the judiciary Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei said that “removing hijab amounts to enmity towards values, and people who commit such abnormality will be punished.”

Agencies contributed to this report.

Most Popular
read more: