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Iran says hijab law is under review

(CNN) — Iran’s attorney general, Mohammad Jafar Montazeri, said Thursday that Iran’s parliament and judiciary are reviewing the country’s mandatory hijab law, according to pro-reform outlet Entekhab.

Montazeri was also quoted as saying Iran’s feared morality police had been “abolished”, but Iranian state media strongly rejected those comments, saying the Interior Ministry oversees the force, not the judiciary.

CNN has contacted the Home Office for comment.

Wearing a hijab in public is currently mandatory for women in Iran under strict Islamic law enforced by the country’s so-called morality police. The hijab laws sparked a nationwide protest movement following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died in police custody after being detained by the morality police for allegedly not wearing the hijab properly.

His death, which occurred on September 16, shocked the Islamic Republic and prominent public figures supported the movement, including Iranian actress Taraneh Alidoosti.

The country has been rocked by a wave of protests that first began after Amini’s death and have since coalesced around a series of grievances against the regime. Authorities have unleashed a deadly crackdown on protesters, with reports of forced arrests and physical abuse being used to target the country’s Kurdish minority group.

In a recent CNN investigation, undercover testimony revealed sexual violence against protesters, including minors, in Iran’s detention centers since the start of the unrest.

On the hijab law, Montazeri said: “We know that you feel distressed when you see [mujeres] no hijab in cities, do you think officials are silent about it? As someone who is in the field of this issue, I say that both the parliament and the judiciary work, for example, just yesterday we had a meeting with the culture commission of the parliament and they will see the results within the next week or two ”, quoted by ISNA, state-affiliated media.

But there is no evidence of what, if any, changes might occur to the law, which came into effect after the Islamic Revolution in 1979.

The shocking testimony of an Iranian about the morality police 2:13

Responding to a reporter who asked if the country’s moral police were being disbanded, Montazeri was quoted by Iranian state media as saying: “The moral police have nothing to do with the judiciary. It was abolished from the same place it was launched. Of course, the judiciary will continue to monitor the behavior of society.”

Arabic-language state television Al-Alam claimed that foreign media described Montazeri’s comments as “a departure by the Islamic Republic from its stance on hijab and religious morality as a result of the protests,” but that all of that What could be understood from his comment was that the morality police were not directly related to the judiciary.

“But no official from the Islamic Republic of Iran has said that the Orientation Patrol has been shut down,” Al-Alam said Sunday afternoon.

“Some foreign media have tried to interpret these words of the attorney general as the Islamic Republic withdrawing the hijab and modesty issue and claim it is due to the recent unrest.”

The remarks were delivered in Qom, considered a holy city in Siha Islam.

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