July 13, 2021
Five people have been arrested at an Iranian fabric store after it held an opening event that featured a number of female models.
The Rabani store in Mahabad, a predominantly Kurdish town in West Azerbaijan province, was shut down following the recent promotional event. A video posted on social media showed several women in party dresses, not wearing the Islamic Republic-mandated headscarf.
Akbar Tayogh, director of public relations for West Azerbaijan Department of Justice, said the fabric shop had acted “immorally” in using “unconventional advertising methods”. The prosecutor’s office, he added, had acted swiftly and “decisively” after it learned about the event.
Mehrab Pour-Akbar, Mahabad’s prosecutor, reported that a total of five people – including the store’s owner, and four of the models – had been arrested over the non-observance of “Islamic hijab”.
The charges against them include offences against “convention and morality”, “unconventional advertising” and not observing “Sharia criteria”.
The actions of the judiciary have been condemned by Iranians across social media as another sign of worsening suppression of civil liberties in Iran.