Iran

Iranian Internet users are far from “Happy”

Many Iranians have not forgiven their regime for imprisoning for two days the young men and women who had lip-synced Pharrell Williams’ hit song “Happy” in Tehran. Moreover, even though the actors were released (after being forced to disavow their video), the clip’s creator is still in jail. As a result, new videos are taking an inverted approach to the famous song, accusing the Iranian government of infringing its citizens’ right to be “happy”. Read more...

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Threat of rape used to pressure women in Iran to wear hijab

Our Observers in Iran tell us that a disturbing photo of a mutilated woman has been widely circulated via text message, accompanied by threats of rape for women who do not wear headscarves and conservative clothing. This comes at a time when an increasing number of Iranian women are pushing back against the Islamic Republic’s compulsory dress code. Read more...

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The mysterious origins of Iran's animated anti-Israel films

 
It’s an all-out war between Iran and Israel – in cartoon form. And Iran is winning, at least according to a string of explosion-filled propaganda films the country continues to release. Though Hassan Rohani’s government has sought to somewhat assuage tensions with Israel, these 3D animated films, which first appeared under his predecessor’s reign, keep on coming.  Read more...
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Courting endangered cheetahs capture Iranian hearts

 
Kushki, an Asiatic male cheetah, is waiting for a response to his marriage proposal, which was delivered by his best men, four cyclists. The cyclists travelled 400 kilometres to bring the message to Delbar, a female cheetah who lives on the other side of Iran. Read more…
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The woman encouraging a hijab revolution in Iran

Over the past week, women in Iran have been posting photos of themselves without their hijabs on a Facebook page called “Stealthy Freedoms”, which has already garnered nearly 130,000 likes. We asked the woman who launched the page about the meaning behind this defiant gesture. Read more…

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Iran’s hardliners launch campaign against ‘improper’ dress

 
Every year, as the weather warms up, the Iranian morality police come out in full force to patrol the streets and stop women they judge as being dressed too seductively. Despite a new, more moderate president, our Iranian Observers expect this summer’s crackdown will be even harsher than in previous years because the country’s hardliners have launched a massive campaign to denounce examples of “immodest” dress. Read more...
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Iranian President’s wife sparks outrage with 'wild party'

 
Last Saturday, the Iranian first lady, wife of Iranian President Hassan Rohani, threw a party to mark Women’s Day, celebrated on the birthday of Prophet Muhammad’s daughter Fatima. Ultra-conservative outcry at this so-called “lavish ball” has sparked many spoofs videos from bloggers and Rohani supporters. Read more...
 
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Iranians shave heads to protest political prisoner ‘abuse’

 
Dozens of Iranians have sheared their hair in support of political prisoners held at a penitentiary in Tehran, who say guards beat them and shaved their heads last week. Read more...
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‘Sex jihadist’ was actually a porn actress

Aïsha left Saudi Arabia to go carry out “sex jihad” in Syria, where she became pregnant with an Islamist fighter’s child. Or at least, that’s the story several official Iranian media outlets have reported. But Iranian Internet sleuths quickly realised it was fishy. Read more...

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