#WhiteWednesdays: Women From the Middle East Protest Mandatory Hijab Laws

Published September 9th, 2019 - 07:06 GMT
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Women from Turkey, Afghanistan and Iran protest forced hijab by sharing videos of themselves taking off their head scarves through hashtags #WhiteWednesdays and #FreeFromHijab on social media.

A while ago, an Iranian online movement advocating for women's freedom of choice created the White Wednesday movement which invites men and women to wear white veils, scarves or bracelets to show their opposition to mandatory forced veiling laws. 

Masih Alinejad, an Iranian-born journalist and activist based in the United Kingdom and the United States created the movement to protest Iran's mandatory hijab rule. She described the movement saying, "This campaign is addressed to women who willingly wear the veil, but who remain opposed to the idea of imposing it on others. Many veiled women in Iran also find the compulsory imposition of the veil to be an insult." 

In the videos shared on social media, women from all over the Middle East, and even from Spain, take off their hijab and call for their right to not wear it. 

In the beginning of this week, an Iranian woman set herself on fire after being jailed for entering a stadium. This was a brutal reminder about the reality and the risks of being arrested for walking unveiled or protesting mandatory hijab laws in Iran. 

Women from Turkey also shared their solidarity with Iranian women by calling out the oppressive reality of forced Hijab and its heavy burden on females anywhere in the world.

A Spanish journalist showed her support for the movement, which raises awareness towards Iranian activists imprisoned for protesting compulsory hijab in Iran.

In the meantime, at least 40 Iranian women are in jail for peacefully challenging the Islamic Republic of Iran, including 10 women who protested their mandatory hijab laws in the strict country. 


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