White Wednesdays activist Saba Kordafshari, has been temporarily released from prison on a furlough together with her mother, Raheleh Ahmadi.  Based on reports, Kordafshari had to post a 2.2 billion Tomans (around $500,000) bail to be granted a furlough.

Tehran Revolutionary Court had sentenced Kordafshari in 2019 to a total of 24 years in prison for demanding an end to compulsory hijab laws, including 15 years a on charges of “spreading corruption and prostitution and walking without a veil.” She had received 7.5 years on “national security” charges for removing her headscarf in public and the remaining 1.5 years for creating propaganda against the regime.

Ahmadi, was released on furlough on March 14. Shei had been arrested in February 2020 for having opposed the unjust sentence meted out to her daughter.

Kordafshari and her mother were part of a group of women, including Yasaman Aryani, Monireh Arabshahi and Mojgan Keshavarz, that created a video opposing compulsory hijab in 2019. The women had handed out flowers to women in Tehran metro. The security forces arrested everyone affiliated with the campaign on the same day.

The White Wednesdays movement opposes compulsory hijab and promotes freedom of choice for Iranian women.

Women of #WhiteWednesdays in Iran are still in prison. By removing their compulsory hijab, they had produced this awe-inspiring video on women’s day on Tehran’s metro. They were calling their sisters to band together, regardless of whether they wear hijab or not.

In spite of being sentenced to long prison sentences, they don’t regret their heroic act. Don’t forget their names and help us raise awareness for their release Yasaman Aryani Monireh Arab-shahi Mojgan Keshavarz Saba Kord-Afshari Raheleh Ahmadi They’re Iran’s Rosa Parks And here is a message from these two brave mother and daughter from prison for #InternationalWomensDay



Did you know that in addition to being the only country in the world imposing a dress code on women, Iran is also the only country in the world that makes it forbidden to them to ride bicycles? Often times, municipalities come up with draconian rules to find out about the best ways of making cycling impossible to women. Just like what the city of Esfahan recently did when it relaunched its bike sharing system.

Why are Iran’s clerics so rattled by the image of women cycling in the streets? Basically, the tenets of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s ideology are written on women’s bodies. Controlling their actions in society is part and parcel of how this clerical system projects its power. Women in Iran have been the greatest victims of more than 40 years of the clerical rule. Various clerics aver that women riding bicycles provokes men. In other words, instead of teaching men to control their urges, the system in Iran blames women for exciting men. Just like the way they impose compulsory hijab.

But as in this video, many Iranian women have been cycling unveiled to shatter the foundations of patriarchy in Iran. They have been challenging these clerics in every possible way. This woman is engaging in a double crime in the standards of the Islamic Republic: being unveiled and cycling, freedoms taken for granted elsewhere in the world.

The bravery of Iranian women in the face of misogynist clerics who impose compulsory hijab on them is simply awe-inspiring. Over the course of our campaign, we have received countless videos from many Iranian women overtly walking unveiled in front of clerics in Iran. Despite being verbally attacked and humiliated by these clerics, these women continued their combat and filmed their experience. Such humiliation has been ongoing for more than 40 years now. What we have done is to relay these women’s heroic fight to the entire world so that the world becomes aware of fact that hijab is not merely a piece of cloth. In the hands of dictators, it can deprive women of their agency. Here is a selection of 13 women who fight the verbal abuse of 13 clerics and walk unveiled despite the threats.

Read More

Their bravery is awe-inspiring. Despite the risk of getting arrested, these women openly opposed the compulsory hijab in Iran. Their names Yasaman Aryani, Monireh Arab-Shahi and Mojgan Keshavarz.

Imagine being jailed for defending the most basic freedom: Freedom to choose what to wear! Elsewhere in the world, these women would have been celebrated for their commitment to women’s rights and feminism.

But in Iran, authorities have sentenced them to years of prison and they are being treated like criminals. As the world is presently grappling with the coronavirus pandemic, let’s not forget about these brave souls who are languishing in prison. Because freedom is not free.The international community should not turn a blind eye to the situation of these women. When female politicians visit Iran and submit to the compulsory hijab (under the pretext that it is the “Iranian culture”), they are also justifying the authorities’ repression of Iranian women. After all, compulsion has never been part of Iranian culture. Rather, it is the hallmark of a repressive and authoritarian system called the Islamic Republic, which has killed tens of thousands of Iranians fighting for freedom.

#WhiteWednesdays #MyStealthyFreedom

Read More

Your donation can make a huge difference. Together we are stronger.