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  • Masoud Dalvand 6:51 am on August 18, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Iran Vilifies Human Rights Defenders as ‘Enemies of the State’ 

    by Siavosh Hosseini 

    The Iranian regime has increasingly focused on clamping down on anyone who speaks out against the human rights abuses of its ruling class. One of the key areas where this is demonstrated is in the trials of these individuals. Many lack basic legal representation, and the proceedings are brief. If they do have legal representation, there are often hurdles for them to meet with their lawyers and having access to court files delayed.

    Human rights lawyers who speak out against torture and unfair trials have also faced harassment, disbarment, and imprisonment. Trials of human rights defenders generally take place in a climate of fear.

    Amnesty International recently launched a global campaign ‘Brave’, calling for an end to attacks against those defending human rights worldwide.

    “It is a bitter irony that as the Iranian authorities boast about their increased engagement with the UN and the EU, particularly in the aftermath of the nuclear deal, human rights defenders who have made contact with these same institutions are being treated as criminals,” said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for the Middle East and North Africa.

    “Rather than propagating the dangerous myth that human rights defenders pose a threat to national security, the Iranian authorities should focus on addressing the legitimate concerns they raise. These are people who have risked everything to build a more humane and just society – it is appalling that they are so viciously punished for their bravery.”

    Amnesty International, who released a new report entitled ‘Caught in a web of repression: Iran’s human rights defenders under attack’, is calling on the EU to speak out in the strongest terms against the persecution of human rights defenders in the country.

    “The international community, and in particular the EU, must not stay silent over the outrageous treatment of human rights defenders in Iran,” said Luther. “Instead of appeasing Iranian officials, the EU should forcefully call for the immediate and unconditional release of all those jailed for their peaceful human rights activism and for an end to the misuse of the justice system to silence activists.”

    This recent report detailed the crackdown on human rights defenders in a variety of key areas, including the death penalty, women’s rights, and trade unionists, just to name a few.

    Over the past four years, Iran’s judiciary have dropped the threshold for invoking the vague national security-related charges, while increasing the length of prison sentences for these individuals. Many of their crimes include contacting the UN and the EU, as well as international agencies focused on human rights.

    via  Iran Vilifies Human Rights Defenders as ‘Enemies of the State’ — The Media Express

  • Masoud Dalvand 8:01 pm on August 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Iran’s women and their lost dreams 

    There are stories of Iran that mainstream media unfortunately refuse to cover. These days it is all talk about the smiling “moderate” Iranian President Hassan Rouhani launching his second term.

    One dark side of Iran the mullahs’ regime have kept a lid on is the status of Iran’s young women. Despite having a highly educated young population, with women comprising the majority of Iranians going to college, the end result, however, is mostly heartbreaking.

    Shahindokht is a young woman in her twenties working at a women’s clothes shop in Tehran’s Haft-e Teer Square. When interviewed she did not allow the reporter from Iran’s state ILNA news agency take photo of the store she works in, not even a small shot for a video-take, and nor will she allow the reporter name the store. She is afraid. Afraid of losing the job she was lucky to even find. When she talks about her conditions, one gets more familiar with the drastic circumstances young Iranian women are enduring these days:

    “I was in my last year of college, unemployed and literally broke to the point that I was going crazy. My father had been unemployed for a few years and barely making ends meet. He had been a factory worker and I don’t know how he was retired after 20 years, while earning less in comparison to others like him. My older brother drove taxis for a while, until he became a drug addict. For the past few years he sleeps until noon at home, then smokes one cigarette after another until evening. He may work a few hours, just to make his drug money. And that’s it.”
    She wants to share more of her pains, about life and her family, about a sister who has divorced, a mother who soon will most likely be diagnosed with Alzheimer… but she prefers to talk about her job, about working in the clothing store:

    “For a few days I would buy a newspaper and look through the ads. I couldn’t find a job in my field, history. As I looked more I started to become hopeless. I came to understand I either had to start selling on the streets or down in the metro, or take a job as a typist or a salesperson. Typing wasn’t easy for me. I started looking for stores selling women’s clothing, and finally, a month later, I found this place. The day when I came for the interview there were many women in line. Such a long line, you should’ve seen it.”

    Now it’s exactly eight months since Shahindokht is selling women’s clothing, and as she said, living on tips and percentage. She doesn’t have a written contract or a fixed paycheck. No insurance either…

    “We receive a monthly salary of two million or three million rials in cash from the storeowner (the equivalent of around $100), for cleaning the place, making tea, providing some service. The rest is from how much we sell. At New Year my salary reached 15 million rials (around $500), but now it’s mostly no more than seven to eight million. I am waiting for late August and September. With schools and colleges opening, young ladies and school girls come flocking in to this square to buy new clothes. That’s when we sellers see better days…”

    In the middle of her sentence two or three ladies enter the store. Shahindokht looked in despair, upset at why she had been standing outside talking. She has to go in or else the other sellers will receive the percentage, and who knows when two or three more customers will come by this store again.

    There are many such young women in Iran’s huge capital, Tehran. Women who are deprived of having a decent job, forced to work in such conditions without a guaranteed future… These women can only afford a very minimum lifestyle if their storeowners are lucky in their sales… if not, they just come and go. Meaningless labor, without any light at the end of a long, dark tunnel.

    This is the destiny awaiting young educated women in Iran ruled by the mullahs’ regime.

    via Iran’s women and their lost dreams — Iran Commentary

  • Masoud Dalvand 8:26 am on August 2, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    80 women executed in Iran under Rouhani 



    Reyhaneh Jabbari was executed in order to defend herself against rape in October 2014

    According to the data collected from material published by the Iranian state-run press, human rights activists and their websites, or from private sources in touch with the Iranian Resistance, 80 of those executed during Rouhani’s tenure have been women.

    Nevertheless, the actual figures are definitely higher, as most executions in Iran are carried out secretly without anyone knowing except those who carry it out.

    Women’s Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran

    Women Executed Under Rouhani
    Released:July 28, 2017

    No. Name-Last Name-Age-Date of Execution-Place of Execution Officially Announced
    1 unnamed woman Sep. 10, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    2 unnamed woman Sep. 19, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd –
    3 unnamed woman Sep. 19, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd –
    4 unnamed woman Sep. 19, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd –
    5 Z S Sep. 22, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd Mehr News Agency
    6 N S Sep. 22, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd Mehr News Agency
    7 S H Sep. 22, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd Mehr News Agency
    8 unnamed woman Sep. 25, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    9 unnamed woman Sep. 25, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    10 unnamed woman Sep. 25, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    11 Kobra Kabiri 48 Sep. 25, 2013 Gohardasht Prison –
    12 unnamed woman Sep. 26, 2013 Kerman prison Mehr News Agency
    13 Nastaran Safari 26 Oct. 21, 2013 Dizel Abad Prison — Kermanshah –
    14 Jazi Darvishzadeh Oct. 26, 2013 Orumieh Prison –
    15 Mitra Shahnavazi Oct. 30, 2013 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj –
    16 unnamed woman Oct. 30, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    17 unnamed woman Oct. 30, 2013 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    18 A A Nov. 21, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd Justice Department of Yazd
    19 R A Nov. 21, 2013 Central Prison — Yazd Justice Department of Yazd
    20 unnamed woman Jan. 26, 2014 Delfan Fars News Agency
    21 Farzaneh Moradie 26 Mar. 4, 2014 Isfahan Prison ISNA news agency
    22 unnamed woman May. 10, 2014 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj –
    23 Behjat May. 10, 2014 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj –
    24 S T May. 28, 2014 Amol Fars News Agency
    25 unnamed woman Jul. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Birjand –
    26 unnamed woman Jul. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Birjand –
    27 unnamed woman Jul. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Birjand –
    28 unnamed woman Jul. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Birjand –
    29 unnamed woman Aug. 07, 2014 Central Prison — Kermanshah –
    30 unnamed woman Aug. 09, 2014 Central Prison — Zahedan –
    31 unnamed woman Aug. 23, 2014 Central Prison — Zahedan –
    32 unnamed woman Aug. 26, 2014 Shahab Prison — Kerman –
    33 unnamed woman Sep. 10, 2014 Gharchak Prison — Varamin –
    34 unnamed woman 60 Sep. 11, 2014 Central Prison — Rasht Iranian state television & radio
    35 unnamed woman Sep. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Zahedan –
    36 unnamed woman Sep. 20, 2014 Central Prison — Zahedan –
    37 Reyhaneh Jabbari 26 Oct. 25, 2014 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj IRNA news agency
    38 Akram Hosseini 43 Dec. 02, 2014 Gharchak Prison — Varamin –
    39 Marzie Ostovari Dec. 02, 2014 Central Prison — Orumieh –
    40 F GH Dec. 10, 2014 Central Prison — Qazvin Young Journalists Club
    41 Nahid Ghiasvand Dec. 16, 2014 Orumieh Prison –
    42 unnamed woman Dec. 17, 2014 Central Prison — Tabriz –
    43 Nahid Dec. 24, 2014 Ghezel Hesar Prison — Karaj Tabnak Website
    44 unnamed woman Dec. 27, 2014 Central Prison — Zahedan –
    45 unnamed woman Jan. 01, 2015 Bam Prison –
    46 unnamed woman Jan. 01, 2015 Bam Prison –
    47 unnamed woman Jan. 01, 2015 Bam Prison –
    48 unnamed woman Jan. 01, 2015 Bam Prison –
    49 Marzie Hossein Zehi Feb. 28, 2015 Kerman Prison –
    50 Mehrnoush Ghavvassi Mar. 07, 2015 Ghezel Hesar Prison — Karaj –
    51 unnamed woman Mar. 07, 2015 Ghezel Hesar Prison — Karaj –
    52 F Yousefi 48 Apr. 25, 2015 Central Prison — Rasht Justice Department of Gilan
    53 Batool A May. 13, 2015 Central Prison — Arak –
    54 Fateme Mehrabani 39 May. 30, 2015 Qarchak prison — Varamin –
    55 unnamed woman May. 30, 2015 Qarchak prison — Varamin –
    56 unnamed woman 32 Jun. 09, 2015 announced in the press w/o place Young Journalists Club
    57 Paridokht Molaie far 43 Jul. 29, 2015 Ghezelhesar Prison — Karaj –
    58 unnamed woman Jul. 30, 2015 Shahab Prison — Kerman –
    59 Fatemeh Hadadi 39 Aug. 10, 2015 Qarchak prison — Varamin –
    60 Fatemeh Salbehi 23 Oct. 16, 2015 Adel Abad Prison — Shiraz Salamat News — Health Ministry
    61 Hajar Safari Nov. 12, 2015 Central Prison — Tabriz –
    62 F Zanjanian Dec. 06, 2015 Central Prison — Qazvin Parsineh website
    63 Zahra Nemati Jan. 06, 2016 Central Prison — Tabriz
    64 Ameneh Rezaiian 43 Apr.14,2016 Prison of Kashmar
    65 unnamed woman Apr. 14, 2016 central prison of Birjand
    66 unnamed woman Apr. 14, 2016 central prison of Birjand
    67 Zeinab Chamani 27 Apr. 25, 2016 Sari Prison Justice Department of Sari-without mentioning the victim’s name or gender
    68 unnamed woman Jun. 02, 2016 Young Journalists Club Central Prison of Qazvin
    69 unnamed woman Jul.17,2016 Ghezel Hesar Prison — Karaj
    70 unnamed woman Aug. 25, 2016 Central Prison — Yazd State-run Iran newspaper
    71 Moluk Nouri Sep. 29, 2016 Central Prison — Orumieh .
    72 unnamed woman January 15, 2017 Central Prison — Karaj
    73 unnamed woman January 15, 2017 Central Prison — Karaj .
    74 unnamed woman March 4, 2017 Central Prison — Rasht
    75 unnamed woman March 4, 2017 Central Prison — Rasht
    76 unnamed woman May/3/2017 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj
    77 unnamed woman May/3/2017 Gohardasht Prison — Karaj
    78 Zeinab Sa’adanlou July/1/2017 Central Prison — Rasht
    79 unnamed woman 25 July/26/2017 Central Prison — Babol
    State-run Ganjineh and Shabtab News
    80 unnamed woman July 26, 2017 Central Prison — Orumieh
  • Masoud Dalvand 4:46 pm on August 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Iran: Bleak future awaits young brides 


    41,000 children under 15 years of age get married every year in Iran.

    Social scientist and writer, Rayeheh Mozaffarian, announced these figures on the marriage of girl children in Iran and added, “37,117 girls under 15 years of age got married in 2014 with men of various ages, while 1,249 girls in this age got divorced.”

    Mozaffarian also revealed that the largest number of girls getting married under 10 years of age are in the southeastern province of Sistan and Baluchistan. Next in line are the provinces of Razavi Khorassan, East Azerbaijan, and Khuzistan for marriages of girl children between 10 and 14 years of age in 2014.

    Mozaffarian added, “Early pregnancy inflicts the greatest psychological and physical damages on married girl children… Presently, nearly 1,700 pregnant mothers less than 15 years of age are experiencing their first pregnancy.”

    She also said, “Based on research done, the largest number of mothers who die between 25 and 30 years of age belong to (the southern Iranian) Province of Hormuzgan. On the average, these women have given birth to three children up to this age. After the third delivery, they face the risk of death.” (The official IRNA news agency, July 30, 2017)

    • bluemoone 2:45 am on August 2, 2017 Permalink

      They should be in school and planning for college. Has that always been one is that a byproduct of the US meddling?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Masoud Dalvand 7:18 am on August 2, 2017 Permalink

      Yes, you’re right dear Danielle, they should be in school, but unfortunately this is situation of women and girls and all of people in Iran under rule of religious dictatorship. Thanks for comment, good luck.


    • Masoud Dalvand 9:22 pm on August 2, 2017 Permalink

      Thanks for sharing.

      Liked by 1 person

    • bluemoone 12:10 am on August 3, 2017 Permalink

      I know you and others are working to bring more freedom to Iran. I lend my voice to your cause. The strength of the people is always stronger than the oppressors’. I look forward to the day when circumstances change for all.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Masoud Dalvand 9:32 am on August 3, 2017 Permalink

      Many thanks Danielle, you are a great friend and a great supporter of human rights. It’s my pleasure friendship with you. Good luck.

      Liked by 1 person

    • bluemoone 7:47 am on August 4, 2017 Permalink

      Mine too

      Liked by 1 person

  • Masoud Dalvand 11:01 am on July 23, 2017 Permalink | Reply
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    Arrest of young woman in Iran for wearing skirt 

    A young Iranian woman shared a post and a photo in the social networks, reporting that she had been arrested for wearing a blouse and skirt. In this illuminating post, she recounts what happened to her and other women arrested and detained for being improperly veiled. Following is the text of her post:
    They told me it’s forbidden to wear a blouse and skirt.
    It was the first time I was hearing something like this. I never thought the situation in the country was so bad that wearing a skirt could be counted as a crime.
    And it was not just me. Everyone wearing short manteaux which was above the knees or was open in the front, and everyone wearing pants just 90-cms in length, were arrested. They were arresting people en masse. Then, when the van was filled, the captain said, ‘That’s enough. Let’s go!’
    All the girls were weeping. They were so scared.
    When we arrived at the police station, their treatment became really rough. They made threats to send some of us to (the infamous) Vozara (detention center).[1] They had us fill a questionaire and took our photos. Then they made us sign a pledge. And finally, they said (your families) should bring you clothes and covering. We can let you go only after we check and OK them.
    I told the agent, “Although compulsory Hijab is wrong in the first place, what was wrong with my clothes? Is it a crime to wear a blouse and a skirt? Where is this written?”
    He told me, “The color of your hair is like those who worship Satan. Your covering belongs to Israel. Then if you fall down and trip over, your skirt flies up. Then what are you going to do? You have ruined our lives!!”
    I started laughing so hard that all the girls who were crying started to laugh loud, too. But I couldn’t resist. I had promised Tahoora (name of a person) that nothing would happen to me again.
    We were humiliated so much. This wasn’t any feminist tweet or an argument over literature. This was the “reality” going on. The reality that showed the real society was something else.
    There I learned that I must get out of the cyber space and all the hot talks in it. Education and protests must be taken to the streets. When security forces tell me that it is a crime to wear a blouse and skirt, I must not fear and I must punch them in the mouth. It’s time for everyone to take to the streets and demand that violence against women be stopped.
    In the end, I have a question for Rouhani, Molaverdi[2] and other officials who speak of freedoms. Is it a national security crime to wear a blouse and a skirt?
    [1] Vozara is the name of an infamous detention center located on a Tehran street with the same name, where women are taken to for improper veiling but are tranferred from there to other unknown locations to be tortured and sexually assaulted.
    [2] Shahindokht Molaverdi is Rouhani’s deputy in women and family affairs.
    Originally published at freedomessenger.com.
  • Masoud Dalvand 8:29 am on July 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Iran women's rights, , Women's Committee of NCRI   

    Ban on women’s entry to stadiums climaxed in June 

    Ban on women's entry to stadums in Iran

    NCRI Women’s Committee Monthly Report – June 201

    Denying women’s entry to stadiums to watch sports competitions once again climaxed in June, attracting attention to the lingering discrimination against women in Iran.

    Women’s tickets were announced “sold out” by the website selling tickets for the FIVB Volleyball World League 2017 in Tehran in the first hour of sale on June 6. Those attempting early to purchase tickets on the website saw this message: Unfortunately, women’s quota of tickets has been SOLD OUT.

    The website also had some warnings before sale of tickets. One such warning read: Ticket quotas for men and women are completely separate and it is not possible to swap tickets between the two. Spectators who purchase tickets from the other’s share will not be allowed to enter the stadium.

    A female journalist reporting on sports said, “We learned that, as in the past, a number of women have been allowed into the stadium as a theatrical measure to claim that the authorities have allowed women into the stadium, while the website selling the tickets displayed a ‘sold out’ message since the very first minutes of the sale of tickets if you chose female as gender.”

    Iranian women showed their protest in different forms.

    A number of women held a banner and staged a protest in Tehran in mid-June against the ban imposed on their entrance to Tehran’s Azadi sports stadium. The banner read, “Entering Azadi Stadium is my right.”

    Iranian women and other users tweeted a Farsi hashtag, “the rights of 49% of the populace (women),” to express their protest to the continued ban on women’s presence in sports stadiums in Iran.

    These protests, however, met threats by Ansar-e Hezbollah. The Coordinating Council of the Ansar-e Hezbollah in Iran issued a warning against women’s presence in the stadiums and declared that it would use Khamenei’s order of “fire at will” to deal with it. (The state-run ILNA news agency – June 17, 2017)

    Hossein Allah-Karam, head of the coordination council of Ansar-e Hezbollah, published the statement on his Instagram and wrote, “This organization has complaints about the Ministry of Sports and Youths which has illegally and unlawfully dragged hundreds of women and girls as spectators to the recent volleyball games of men.”

    Hezbollah students also issued a declaration on Friday, June 16, to the speaker of the mullahs’ parliament (Majlis), Ali Larijani, in which they demanded prohibition of women’s entry to stadiums to watch the World League Volleyball games in Tehran. The declaration read in part, “Please order tending to this matter, otherwise, we would have to prevent it based on Khamenei’s ‘fire at will’ order….”[1]

    The Ansar-e Hezbollah is protesting women’s entry to stadiums while it has not been facilitated, yet. Only a limited number of women attended the first game played by Iran’s national volleyball team.

    Shaqayeq Yazdani, wife of the team’s medical doctor, wrote in her Instagram in this regard, “Unfortunately, entry to the stadium has not been sanctioned for all women and only the wives and families of members of the national volleyball team whose names have already been registered by the federation can enter after providing proper identification.”

    Alamol-Hoda, Khamenei’s representative in Mashhad, reacted on June 11, 2017. He said, “If it is decided that a group of boys and girls gather and a bunch of women and girls create excitement in the sideline of an athletic championship race, clap and whistle and jump up and down, then this would be indecent. And indecency is an epitome of sin.” (The state-run Aparat website – June 11, 2017)

    Women were not allowed in to watch the Pakistan-Iran volleyball match on May 1, 2017, in Rezazadeh stadium of Ardabil, East Azerbaijan Province. They voiced their protest against such discrimination. The cancellation without prior notice was made despite previous approval letting women into the stadium to watch the game.

    Eight young women who attempted to enter Tehran’s Azadi Stadium to watch the game between Persepolis and Esteghlal football teams, were arrested on February 12, 2017, during inspections before passing the entrance gate. (The state-run ISNA news agency – February 14, 2017)

    Female reporters were not allowed entry to the stadium to take pictures of the football match between women of Iran and Russia. ISNA’s headline read, “Female reporters do not enter, the Russians are not wearing the veil!”

    “The women’s national football team of Iran was hosting the world’s second champion, when the Football Federation ironically banned entry of women reporters and photographers to this competition.” (The state-run ISNA news agency – October 17, 2016)

    In August 2016, Shahindokht Mollaverdi, Rouhani’s deputy in women and family affairs, stressed in a news conference that the issue of women is “a political issue.”

    She also defended restrictions imposed on women’s presence in the stadiums and said, “We have never wanted to open the doors of all stadiums on women without any restrictions! We believe that women’s presence in stadiums must be in accordance with religious principles and in some fields!”


    Women’s presence in sports stadiums was restricted in post-Revolutionary Iran and in line with the clerical regime’s views and policies of sex segregation.

    Nevertheless, Iranian women and girls have continued their efforts to gain equal rights. They believe that being able to attend the games in sports stadiums is a step towards elimination of inequality and gender discrimination and they will keep up their struggle in this regard.

    In the 1990s and 2000s, women demanded to be able to watch the games and the Asian and World sports federations brought pressure on the regime to end the ban.

    Women tried to enter the Iran-Germany football match in 2004.

    On September 9, 2012, the State Security forces prevented entry of 1000 female spectators to watch the game between Iran and Japan volleyball teams.

    The state-run Etemad newspaper, reported on June 20, 2014, that in the margins of the Iran-Italy volleyball games, the State Security forces and security forces prevented women’s entry to Azadi sports stadium. According to this report, female journalists who carried special ID cards were not allowed to enter the stadium, either.

    In July 2016, although Iran’s Volleyball Federation had announced that it had sold 466 tickets to women, those who had referred to the website to buy tickets in very hours, they saw this message: “Due to limits on the sector related to women, women’s ticket has been finished and there are no more tickets available until further notice.”

    Subsequently, the state-run TV also showed images of women participating in the game between Iran and Serbia. What was common among female participants in the stadium was that most of them were wearing the black Maghna’eh (tight head cover) and manteaux and they did not show much excitement, either.

    The women present in the stadium were reportedly, the relatives of the players or staff of the Sports Ministry. They had been told to be “conventional and act within limits” in encouraging the players. Their number was also far below the announced figure and amounting only to some 200 people.

    On October 13, 2016, the Human Rights Watch sent a letter to Ary Graça, President of the World Volleyball Federation, in which it wrote, as long as Iran does not guarantee the freedom of female spectators to attend and watch the volleyball games in the country, the World Volleyball Federation must deprive Iran from hosting the federation’s tournaments.


    [1] Ali Khamenei, the mullahs’ supreme leader, used the term, “fire at will”, in a speech on June 7 to a group of youths whom he called “officers of the soft warfare.” He said the young men had permission to “fire at will” to criticize the cultural policies of the government.

  • Masoud Dalvand 10:03 pm on June 1, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Iran women's rights, , , , , , ,   

    Iranian women – onerous path to achieve freedom 

    During the past 38 years, Iranian women have been suppressed in both law and practice.

    All the fundamental rights of women have ceaselessly been violated by ideologically motived laws, which are approved by fundamentalist clerics who believe that a woman is worth half of a man. This means, for example, that if a woman dies in an accident, then her family receives only half compensation.


    Tahere Qurratu l-Ayn

    In historic terms, although clerics have always tried to restrict Iranian women, those women have never given up against Islamic fundamentalist rules. One of the Iranian woman who broke the taboo and challenged all traditional religious laws was Tahere Qurratu l-Ayn. She lived in the nineteenth century and was executed in 1852 by fundamentalist clerics.

    At the moment, women in Iran suffer greatly under the Iranian regime, as the theocracy views them as second-class citizens. They face many restrictions, such as compulsory hijab, to be under the tutelage of a man, gender barriers, and systematic discrimination and marginalisation.

    A few months after the popular revolution in 1979, the founder of “the Islamic Republic”, Khomeini, decreed compulsory hijab in all governmental offices. However, in 1983, the Islamic Consultative Assembly (the parliament) legislated a repressive law that imposed penalties for women who do not observe the compulsory dress code. Despite Hassan Rouhani, a purported “moderate” president, holding office, the Iranian regime has continued to use morality police to enforce this repressive law. For example, few weeks ago, a young woman was run over by police for improper veiling. If a woman resists against the morality police, she will be arrested. According to some reports, a majority of women who are arrested by the morality police are subjected to sexual harassment.

    There is also an exploiter law, which is officially known as Non-compliance. If a woman refuses to have sex with her husband, she can be sentenced by the court. Some fundamentalist clerics say that husbands can and should punish their wives for “such violation”.

    There are other medieval laws in place, such as inheritance and testimony. A woman’s inheritance is half of that of a man’s. The same goes for women’s testimony in a court, as its worth half of a man. This means that there must be at least two women who testify on a matter in the court, if they expect their testimony to be heard and approved.

    For Iran’s religious dictatorship, freedom for women is a red-line. It is a known fact that the clerics do not believe that a woman can or is fit to be a president or a judge. Consequently, the regime’s constitution bars women from standing as a candidate for a presidential election or being a judge.

    Another example of religiously motivated suppression is the suppression of Baha’is. The ruling clerics and their laws consider Baha’is as an enemy of God “Mohareb”. There are many prohibitions against them in the Iranian society, such as an education ban and deprivation of all public service. Many of their leaders are also imprisoned, because they challenge these repressive laws.

    Overall, despite international warnings in recent years, the condition of human rights has gotten worse in Iran. This is proven by the fact that Iran is one of the few countries that have a Special Rapporteur appointed by the United Nations. This Special Rapporteur has the mandate to monitor and report on the human rights situation in the country. The Iranian regime and its allies in the UN used many resources to try to prevent this appointment.

    How the Iranian women resist against mullah’s regime?

    Despite the suppression, the women in Iran continue to protest gender discrimination and challenge the repressive laws. In Iran, women form the core of a historical resistance against the theocracy. Women play a key role in the Iranian opposition group, the People’s Mojahedin Organisation of Iran (PMOI), which terrifies the ruling theocracy. Between 1981 and 1988, tens of thousands of political prisoners were executed. A majority of those killed were members of the Iranian opposition group, officially known as the PMOI. It is obvious that during the massacre, women were a huge portion of the victims. But women are still being arrested for supporting the PMOI and they are being sentenced to long prison sentences as a result.


    Maryam Akbari-Monfared

    A prisoner of conscience, Maryam Akbari-Monfared, 48, was arrested in December 2009 and is serving a 15 year-prison sentence after being accused of supporting the PMOI. “She is facing reprisals after filing a formal complaint that seeks an official investigation into the mass killings of political prisoners, including her siblings, in the summer of 1988,” according to a statement by Amnesty on November 3, 2016.She was said that her conviction was only because of her family’s role in the PMOI.

    In fact, the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), the broader opposition coalition for establishing freedom and democracy in Iran that includes the PMOI, is led by a Muslim woman, Maryam Rajavi, which is unique for the Middle East. This means that Iranian women are at the forefront of the struggle for democracy in Iran.

    She has presented a 10-point democratic platform for the future of Iran that envisions complete gender equality in political and social rights and is committed to the equal participation of women in political leadership. This platform will abolish any form of discrimination against women and the compulsory dress code. It also establishes the separation of the church and the State, prohibiting any form of discrimination against the followers of all religions and denominations.

    This platform represents a viable alternative to the current theocracy and should be recognized and supported by the international community.

    via  Iranian women – onerous path to achieve freedom — The Media Express

  • Masoud Dalvand 7:27 am on May 29, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Iran women's rights,   

    Iran: Women Face Bias in the Workplace 

    Iranian Women

    The law also requires a husband’s permission for married women to obtain a passport


    Discriminatory Laws, Practices

    (Beirut) May 25, 2017  – Laws and policies that discriminate against women interfere with Iranian women’s right to work, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on Friday. Women confront an array of restrictions, such as on their ability to travel, prohibitions on entering certain jobs, and an absence of basic legal protections.

    The 59-page report, “‘It’s a Men’s Club’: Discrimination Against Women in Iran’s Job Market,” examines in detail the discriminatory provisions and insufficient protections in Iran’s legal system that represent obstacles to women’s equal access to the job market. Over the past four decades, Iranian women have become half of the country’s university graduates. But, based on the most recent official statistics available, for the period between March 2016 and March 2017, only 14.9 percent of Iran’s women are in the workforce, compared with 64.1 percent of men. This rate is lower than the average of 20 percent for all women in the Middle East and North Africa. The unemployment rate for women, currently 20.7 percent, is double that for men.

    Laws and policies that discriminate against women interfere with Iranian women’s right to work. Women confront an array of restrictions, such as on their ability to travel, prohibitions on entering certain jobs, and an absence of basic legal protections.
    “Iranian women’s achievements in higher education demonstrate their capability and passion to be equal partners in building a better country, but discriminatory laws are holding them back,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Authorities have started to acknowledge these problems, but they should take the necessary steps to remove the barriers that are pushing women to the margins of the workforce.”

    Human Rights Watch interviewed 44 women and men, including lawyers, small business owners, hiring managers, employees in public and private sectors, and economic experts who currently live in Iran or have recently left the country and have participated in or have studied Iran’s job market. The report also analyzes Iranian laws, policies, and officials’ statements.


    “It’s a Men’s Club”

    Discrimination Against Women in Iran’s Job Market

    Iran’s civil code is a major source of legal discrimination against women in the workforce. The civil code considers the husband the head of the household, giving him control over his wife’s economic choices, including the right to prevent his wife from working under certain conditions.

    “I am a woman who has invested so much time on education and can’t imagine myself without my profession,” a woman who is a lawyer and university lecturer told Human Rights Watch. “By pressuring me to leave my job, my husband wants to take away part of my identity.”
    Several lawyers said that during divorce court proceedings, husbands frequently try to gain an advantage by accusing their wives of working without their consent or in jobs they deem unsuitable.

    The law also requires a husband’s permission for married women to obtain a passport. Some employers interviewed said they are unlikely to hire women for jobs that require extensive travel because of this restriction.

    Iran’s social security regulations also discriminate against working women, requiring a woman to prove that her husband is unemployed or has a disability or that she is the sole guardian of their children before she can get equal or family benefits.

    Many job vacancy announcements specify gender preferences based on arbitrary and discriminatory criteria, especially for technical and managerial jobs.
    Thousands of public sector positions are filled through exams administered by a state evaluation administration. In a Human Rights Watch analysis of the 7,026 advertised vacancies for the past three public service entrance exams, about 60 percent specified a preference for a male hire and only 5 percent specified a female hire.

    Shahindokht Mowlaverdy, the country’s vice president for women and family affairs, brought the discrimination to the government’s attention in April 2015. President Hassan Rouhani , in response, postponed a July 2016 exam for 2,545 vacancies. The exam will be held in November 2017, with 300 more positions open to women. While this is a minor improvement, it falls far short of eliminating ongoing discrimination against women in hiring practices in the public sector, Human Rights Watch said.

    Iranian women’s achievements in higher education demonstrate their capability and passion to be equal partners in building a better country, but discriminatory laws are holding them back.

    Women interviewed described a similar experience in the private sector. Many felt that their chances of getting hired or promoted to management positions are lower. “Once my boss told me to come and explain my views in a meeting, but then he immediately retracted his suggestion, saying that it’s not a good idea since it’s a men’s club,” said a mid-level employee at a consulting firm.

    A lack of adequate legal protection also contributes to obstacles for women in the workforce. According to Iranian officials’ statements, more than 48,000 women have lost their jobs after using their legal maternity leave. Managers and employees interviewed said they were not aware of any anti-sexual harassment policies at their workplace, and women reported instances of sexual harassment and arbitrary enforcement of discriminatory dress codes.

    Women are also severely underrepresented in the decision-making process. They currently only occupy 5.8 percent of seats at parliament, while the Guardian Council, a body of Islamic jurists responsible for vetting candidates for elections, has effectively barred women from running for the highest elected office in the country. The Council rejected all women who wanted to run for president in the May 19 national elections.
    Iran should immediately adopt comprehensive anti-discrimination laws, eliminate discriminatory provisions in the current legal system, and extend equal protections to women who participate in the job market, Human Rights Watch said.

    Private companies and foreign investors also have an obligation to ensure equal practices are in accordance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. They should proactively create and enforce clear policies prohibiting sexual harassment in the workplace, ensure gender equality in hiring and promotion, and provide equal access to professional development opportunities.

    In his campaign for reelection, Rouhani strongly criticized the country’s gender inequality.
    “Now that President Rouhani has been elected for the second term, he should make good on his promises of equality,” Whitson said. “Giving Iran’s women the protection and equal rights they deserve is long overdue.”

    Source: Iran: Women Face Bias in the Workplace

  • Masoud Dalvand 9:55 am on May 27, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Iran women's rights, , ,   

    Iran: Young woman arrested in Tehran stadium just 1 week after election 

    Young Iranian woman disguising herself as a man

    By Iran Probe Staff

    Security forces in Tehran’s Azadi Stadium arrested a young woman on Monday who had entered the facility disguising herself as a young man. The stadium was hosting a match between Tehran’s Esteghlal and the UAE’s al-Ein football teams.

    During Iran’s presidential election campaign the faction affiliated to President Hassan Rouhani had allowed young women in large numbers into the stadiums for their meetings and promising to lift the ban on allowing women into sports stadiums.

    During a Rouhani campaign event a young woman had raised a placard written, “Can I come to the stadium after the election?” The answer was provided in less than a week, proving Rouhani had resorted to deceptive measures merely for election purposes.

    Arrested young woman surrounded by security & military forces

    Young woman’s placard reads: Can I also come to the stadium after the election?

    Young woman’s placard reads: Can I also come to the stadium after the election?

    Source: Iran: Young woman arrested in Tehran stadium just 1 week after election – Iran Probe

  • Masoud Dalvand 8:05 pm on March 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Iran women's rights,   

    Women’s Rights Continue to be Oppressed Under ‘Moderate’ President Rouhani 

    Iran’s human rights abuses have been well documented by a variety of sources, including the latest report by the UN Special Rapporteur assigned to Iran. However, various factions have argued that Iran is dominated by hardliners and a more moderate faction. They point to the election of President Rouhani as proof that Iran’s regime can be changed from within.

    Iranian women University 001

    But has Rouhani’s record in office truly demonstrated a more moderate stance by the government? The facts seem to indicate that Rouhani’s ‘moderate’ stance is just more the same hardliner oppression packaged in a different box. One area of particular concern is women’s rights or lack thereof, within Iran.

    As the world marked International Women’s Day in early March, Rouhani has attempted to cloud his own contributions to the oppression of women in Iran. Yet his record actually shows his support for the Iranian regime’s hard line against women. In his own memoirs, Rouhani even explains in detail how in 1980 he began enforcing mandatory hijab regulations as the mullahs began their historical campaign against Iranian women.

    His time in office has also been marked by systematic oppression against women, workers, college students, writers, journalists, dissident bloggers, imposing poverty and unemployment on a majority of Iranians. Political prisoners, including women, are subject to ill-treatment and torture, as well as isolation from their families and legal representation.

    Iran Women Graphics 001

    The number of executions is also averaging two to three people on a daily basis. While a member of the Iranian Parliament, Rouhani was quoted as saying, “Conspirators must be hanged in public before the people during Friday prayers to have more influence.”

    While Iranian women have a high rate of college education, they are limited in their ability to enter the workforce, even in comparison to their counterparts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Rouhani has pledged to set aside all barriers to women and provide them a larger share in politics and economics, but this pledge, like so many others, has rang hollow.

    “Based on numbers, around 300,000 women were working and enjoying social security insurance. However, these numbers have diminished to 100,000,” said Soheila Jelodarzadeh, advisor to Rouhani’s Minister of Industry, Mines and Trade to the official ILNA news agency. This advisor also acknowledged that in many cases, women were only receiving less than a third of the set minimum wage.

    Iranian women university002

    No Ministry of Women’s Affairs has ever been formed, despite the promises of Rouhani to do so. While there are no specific figures regarding the number of women that have been arrested, tortured, and executed under Rouhani’s watch, many in the international community fear those figures would be troubling.

    Being stoned to death is still a punishment in Iran, and women are still sentenced to this punishment for a variety of reasons. Other within the international community have repeated pointed to the discrimination women in Iran face in terms of marriage, divorce, access to their children, and even inheritance. Women cannot even work or travel without the consent of their husbands or a family relative.

    Women are also banned from attending sporting events, and female musicians are not allowed to perform in public. A large number of gender segregation rules also contribute to the regime’s goal of forcing women to stay at home and refrain from taking to the streets and potentially causing trouble for the state.

    Source: Women’s Rights Continue to be Oppressed Under ‘Moderate’ President Rouhani

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