UN Experts Condemn Iran’s Proposed Harsh Hijab Law as “Gender Apartheid”

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Image Courtesy: Mitchell McCluskey and Chris Lau

UN experts have strongly criticized a new draft law in Iran that could impose severe penalties on women and girls who do not wear the hijab, stating that it could amount to “gender apartheid.” The legislation, currently under review by the Iranian parliament, proposes harsh punishments, including long jail sentences, for women who refuse to wear the veil.

The 70-article draft law also suggests stringent penalties for celebrities and businesses that violate the dress code, along with the use of artificial intelligence to identify dress code violators. The UN experts argue that both the new law and existing restrictions discriminate against women and may constitute gender persecution.

The draft law gained attention just ahead of the first anniversary of mass protests triggered by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian woman who died in detention after being stopped by Iran’s morality police for not adhering to the conservative dress code.

The legislation, initially submitted to parliament on May 21, faced amendments that increased the severity of punishment. On August 13, parliament voted to allow a committee to review it without public debate, according to the UN.

The proposed law would reclassify failure to wear the hijab as a more serious offense, punishable by up to ten years in prison and a substantial fine. Business owners and celebrities could also face significant fines, bans on travel, and exclusion from professional activities for non-compliance.

UN experts have called on Iranian authorities to reconsider the legislation in compliance with international human rights law and to ensure the rights of women and girls in Iran are fully protected.

Re-reported from the article originally published in The EDT.

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UN Experts Condemn Iran’s Proposed Harsh Hijab Law as “Gender Apartheid”

Image Courtesy: Mitchell McCluskey and Chris Lau

UN experts have strongly criticized a new draft law in Iran that could impose severe penalties on women and girls who do not wear the hijab, stating that it could amount to “gender apartheid.” The legislation, currently under review by the Iranian parliament, proposes harsh punishments, including long jail sentences, for women who refuse to wear the veil.

The 70-article draft law also suggests stringent penalties for celebrities and businesses that violate the dress code, along with the use of artificial intelligence to identify dress code violators. The UN experts argue that both the new law and existing restrictions discriminate against women and may constitute gender persecution.

The draft law gained attention just ahead of the first anniversary of mass protests triggered by the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian woman who died in detention after being stopped by Iran’s morality police for not adhering to the conservative dress code.

The legislation, initially submitted to parliament on May 21, faced amendments that increased the severity of punishment. On August 13, parliament voted to allow a committee to review it without public debate, according to the UN.

The proposed law would reclassify failure to wear the hijab as a more serious offense, punishable by up to ten years in prison and a substantial fine. Business owners and celebrities could also face significant fines, bans on travel, and exclusion from professional activities for non-compliance.

UN experts have called on Iranian authorities to reconsider the legislation in compliance with international human rights law and to ensure the rights of women and girls in Iran are fully protected.

Re-reported from the article originally published in The EDT.