In this part, we will be looking at how the Iranian Regime suppresses women.
In Iran, millions of women are subjected to humiliation, violence, and abuse every single day. This takes many forms, but according to Maryam Rajavi, the most pervasive is the regular organized campaigns to enforce the forced veiling of women.
Maryam Rajavi reports that Iran increased the monitoring of women’s clothing a couple of years ago when they introduced “The National and Popular Veil and Virtue Front”, which is made up of 301 associations and institutes across Iran that are dedicated to making sure that women are publically observing the mandatory hijab.
Now, the Regime uses unofficial and plainclothes agents to inflict brutal violence upon women who do not wear the hijab, while Hossein Ashtari, Commander of the State Security Force, has even bragged that some 2,000 women per day are arrested for improper veiling.
Maryam Rajavi explained during her speech that one of the most obvious examples of abuses committed by the Regime with regard to the hijab was the 2014 serial acid attacks on women in Isfahan, which “shocked the nation” and the world. These were no rogue criminals, but part of the Regime-backed Ansar-e Hezbollah vigilantes.
Of course, the mandatory hijab is far from the only way the Regime ensures a systematic clampdown on women.
Sexual violence against women is common, especially in the places that a woman should feel safe like at home or in the workplace.
Some 180,000 girls are forced into early marriages every year, which accounts for 24% of yearly marriages. These girls have little recourse against an abusive husband and are often subject to domestic abuse. While the International Labor Organization (ILO) refers to the sexual abuse of women at work as “the poison of [the] work environment”, with many women reluctant to come forward as they lack any form of legal support and risk being fired.
It is perhaps most common, though, in Iran’s prisons, where rape is used as a well-established form of torture.
Maryam Rajavi said: “Women are not free to speak out under the mullahs’ suffocating repression. They cannot speak about sexual abuses particularly when the abuser is one of the regime officials or an agent of security and intelligence services who enjoys immunity before the law and authority to repress and intimidate. As such, they have an open hand in sexually assaulting women. In this respect, Iran is one of the worst countries in the world, today.”
For further proof, Maryam Rajavi advises that we look at the serial rapes of 41 women and girls in Iranshahr last spring. The rapists had public ties to those at the top of the Regime, which eventually led to them escaping justice and the Iranian judiciary punishing instead the people who protested the crime or published news reports of it.
Women are also the main victims of poverty, high prices and economic bankruptcy, with some 3.5 million now serving as the heads of households, which makes them “most vulnerable strata of Iranian society”.
Maryam Rajavi said that all Iranian women’s lives are currently “intertwined with violence and degradation”, which is appalling. So what is the solution?
In our next piece, we will be looking at how Maryam Rajavi and the Iranian Resistance would seek to eliminate violence against women in Iran after the mullahs have fallen, including how Maryam Rajavi’s 10-point-plan for a free Iran fits in.