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Top Iran Police Official Claims 87 Percent Support The Regime

File photo Iranian protesters shout slogans as they gather at a street close to a bazaar in Tehran, Iran, 25 June 2018

While there are constant tensions between citizens and law enforcement in Iran over the strict dress code, a top police official claims 87 percent support the regime and, "More than 90% of Iranian society believes in modesty, the necessity of being covered up, and Hijab (Islamic dress code)."

Describing "improper hijab" as an "obvious crime," General Ayoub Soleimani warned, the security forces will seriously confront women who disregard Islamic dress code.

"Out of 90% who believe in decency and proper clothing, 40% is for the Islamic hijab, and 50% for conventional clothes," the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps General noted.

Without elaborating on the sources of his information, Soleimani also claimed, "Surveys show that more than 87 percent of Iranians support the Islamic rule over their country.

Iran witnessed large anti-regime protests in 2017-2018 across 100 cities, where thousands of protesters called for drastic change and some chanted slogans against the Supreme Leader and major political factions of the ruling elite.

Furthermore, the IRGC General dismissed the number of women, who have been protesting compulsory hijab by taking off their headscarves in busy streets across Iran, as minuscule and highly insignificant.

Taking off headscarves in public is a "plot" devised by the "enemy," Soleimani insisted, adding, "Security forces will not tolerate such behavior, and will confront it with no compromise."

In the meantime, Soleimani asserted that law enforcement forces had prepared ten plans for the current Iranian calendar year (March 21, 2019- 2020) to neutralize the "enemy's plots," fighting narcotics, smuggling, cyberspace security, burglary, and combating social anomalies.

Conservative Islamists and even the so-called "religious intellectuals" have always portrayed hijab as something most Iranians want. However, there has been no study or independent opinion poll to support this.

However, Hijab did not become mandatory based on law. It was based on the use of force against women and imposed by the IRGC Baseej militia and vigilante groups branded as Hezbollah. Hijab became mandatory by use of violence and based on suppression of women and then given a legal facade, not vice versa.

Naturally, some women form conservative families decide to cover their heads but many others are forced by the police to follow hijab rules.

Tehran's Prosecutor-General, Ali Alghasi Mehr, warned ten days ago that whoever protests the compulsory hijab will be unsparingly dealt with and formally prosecuted.

Under the country’s compulsory veiling laws, women and girls, even those as young as seven, are forced to cover their hair with a headscarf against their will. Women, who do not, are treated as criminals by the state, Amnesty International (AI) reported on May 28, 2019.

According to the same report, Iran’s "morality" police place the entire female population – 40 million women and girls – under surveillance. These state agents drive around the city and have the power to stop women and examine their dress, scrupulously assessing how many strands of hair they are showing, the length of their trousers and overcoats, and the amount of make-up they are wearing.

"The punishment for being seen in public without a headscarf includes arrest, a prison sentence, flogging or a fine - all this for the “crime” of exercising their right to choose what to wear," AI said.

Recently, efforts by the so-called "hijab enforcers" to oblige women to observe a strict dress code have led to more resistance in public. In some cases, "hijab enforcers" were pushed back and even battered by angry young women.

Last March, The U.S. State Department strongly condemned the oppression of women’s rights in Iran and called upon the Islamic Republic leaders to end the harassment and imprisonment of women who merely demand their fundamental rights.