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HRW Says Iranian Women Underrepresented In Workplace, Face Discrimination

According to HRW, Iran's percentage of women workers is below 20 percent. (file photo)

With more than one in three university-educated Iranian women unemployed, an international rights group says females face widespread discrimination and other obstacles in the workplace as Iran continues to lag in gender-equality reports.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) says in its May 25 report, It's A Men's Club, that Tehran needs serious legal and social reforms to reverse the negative trend for women -- who only make up 17 percent of Iran's workforce -- and enable them to take part in the country's burgeoning economic opportunities.

The report notes that Iran's percentage of women workers is below the Middle East and North African region's average of 20 percent -- the lowest of any region in the world.

The HRW report says that, although the Iranian economy received a boost in July 2015 when Tehran signed a nuclear agreement with six world powers that ended many international sanctions and freed up billions of dollars in revenue for the government, it hasn't translated into progress for Iranian women despite a pledge by President Hassan Rohani that "all Iranians" would benefit from the deal.

Read the full story in RFE/RL