Confusion grows over way forward for Iran’s hijab patrols  

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TEHRAN — Iran’s state-run Al-Alam information community dismissed studies that the Islamic Republic’s controversial morality police, accountable for implementing obligatory hijab rules, has been abolished.  

Al-Alam was addressing in depth protection of remarks by Iran’s hard-line Chief Prosecutor Mohammad Jafar Montazeri, who appeared to counsel that hijab police was now not working.  

“The morality police has been closed down by the very institution [Interior Ministry] which introduced it,” Montazeri had introduced at an occasion in Tehran on Saturday.  

Jafari’s temporary remark was shortly picked up by Western media as a attainable signal that the ruling institution was backtracking on the long-standing and as soon as unchallenged hijab rules, anger over which has thrown the nation in a state of lethal unrest for 11 weeks now. The protests erupted on Sept. 16, when Iranian lady Mahsa Amini slipped right into a coma and died after her arrest by the hands of a morality police patrol in Tehran.  

Whether or not the prosecutor’s assertion meant an official finish to the morality police mission has but to be clarified. Al-Alam’s report underlined that “no Iranian official has confirmed such a decision,” suggesting that the Interior Ministry stays the one establishment licensed to make such an announcement.  

The report argued that Montazeri had been “misunderstood,” since in the identical speech he declared that the Iranian judiciary will proceed its mission of “control and oversight of social behavior.”  

The so-called steering patrol or morality police, accountable for the general public enforcement of the Iranian authorities’s model of hijab, has been working underneath the Interior Ministry since 2006, when hard-line president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was in workplace. Yet the Iranian public was no stranger to the general public implementation of hijab on the time. To many, it was a rebranding and re-emergence of 1980s patrols working underneath the much-feared Islamic Revolution Committee, which had earned notoriety for its degree of public brutality with strict inspections and arrests.  

The cleric’s feedback have unsurprisingly changed into a trending debate on social media. Some have discovered it as a message that the hard-line institution is finally heeding requires reform. Others, nonetheless, assert that even when the morality police is written off, the protesters’ calls for have already transcended the problem of hijab, as they’re looking for the very overthrow of the Islamic Republic which, of their view, has confirmed its “irreformable” nature through the years.  

“The prosecutor’s comments about the ‘closure of the morality police’ has led to the misunderstanding that the Islamic Republic has retreated from its position on mandatory hijab. It hasn’t,” wrote London-based analyst Hossein Bastani. “The prosecutor, in fact, had a bone to pick with the police, [as] they are exhausted and not continuing their hijab controls in simultaneity with their crackdown on the protesters.” 

At least 470 protesters, amongst them 64 minors, have been killed within the state’s push to quell the unrest, based on the Human Rights Activists News Agency.  

For the primary time because the outbreak of the protests, Iranian authorities launched their official loss of life toll on Saturday. With no exact breakdown, the State Security Council put the determine at 200, noting that it coated safety personnel, “rioters,” some “innocent” civilians, and people who have been victims of “plots” by dissident teams.  

The assertion didn’t trace at duty mendacity with authorities forces, nor did it supply guarantees of justice to the households of the killed protesters.