Iran: President announces ‘review of laws’ – Politics

Iran: President announces 'review of laws' - Politics

Because of the protests that have been going on across the country for weeks, the Iranian government is coming under increasing pressure. Now sees himself President Ebrahim Raisi apparently forced to react in order to get the situation under control. The Irna news agency circulated a statement by Raisi in which he made promises of reform, albeit very vague. He sees it as necessary to “review, revise, update and, if necessary, revise” some of the laws in force in the country.

A social dialogue is necessary in order to eliminate “doubts” within society. “We should also see whether we have achieved the goals set and if not, where the problems lie,” said Raisi. According to the President, there should also be more focus on the status of women. Raisi, on the other hand, did not say which laws he means specifically and whether his demand relates to compulsory headscarves.

The trigger for the unrest, in which women in particular took to the streets against the government’s repressive course and the compulsory headscarf, was the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in mid-September. The moral police had arrested her because of her allegedly “un-Islamic outfit”. What happened to Amini after that is unclear. The woman fell into a coma and died in a hospital on September 16. Critics accuse the morality police of using violence; the police deny it.

After weeks of demonstrations: there are nationwide protests in Iran.  The government is coming under increasing pressure.

There are nationwide protests in Iran. The government is coming under increasing pressure.

(Photo: AP/AP)

Observers are of the opinion that Raisi is now focusing on dialogue, as the violent and sometimes brutal operations of the police and security forces were unable to stop the protests.

A new incident has just become public that has left the government in need of an explanation: a police officer is said to have grabbed a woman’s bottom during a demonstration. There is a video showing the scene that has been shared on social media. There, users are outraged at how the police of an Islamic state could commit such an immoral and sexist act.

The attack is said to have happened this week in the north of the capital Tehran. The police initially tried to portray the video as a recording manipulated by opponents of the regime, but ultimately had to admit the incident. The case is now being investigated, it said in a press statement that was distributed on Saturday.

The video shows that the police want to arrest the demonstrator. However, she vehemently resists. That’s when the attack happened. The woman was eventually freed with the help of other protesters.

EU plans sanctions against Iran

A PR campaign on Vali Asr Square in central Tehran was just as embarrassing for the system. A huge advertising banner with pictures of 50 important women should recognize their achievements for the country. The Islamic Republic is not misogynist – I think the campaign should underscore that message. But a short time later, some of the women – as well as the families of the deceased personalities – demanded that the respective pictures be removed. The system has no right to make political propaganda with these people without permission. Eventually, those responsible had to remove the banner and replace it with an imageless poster.

After weeks of demonstrations: the Iranian regime advertised its policies in the center of Tehran with the portraits of 50 famous women...

With the portraits of 50 famous women, the Iranian regime promoted its politics in the center of Tehran…

(Photo: STR/AFP)

After weeks of demonstrations: ... but had to replace the poster after protests.

… but had to replace the poster after protests.

(Photo: -/AFP)

According to unconfirmed reports, the protests have so far killed more than 200 people, both protesters and police and security forces. In addition, there were a large number of injuries and thousands of arrests, allegedly among them minors as well as journalists and photographers. Iran has so far neither confirmed nor denied these figures.

The EU wants to impose sanctions on the Iranian government because of the unclear circumstances surrounding the death of Mahsa Amini and the suppression of the protests. These could be decided on Monday. Earlier, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell spoke to Iran’s foreign minister, Hussein Amirabdollahian. The government in Tehran sharply criticized the EU: “Unrest, arson and terrorist operations no longer have anything to do with peaceful protests,” said Amirabdollahian. According to the Foreign Minister, the protests are being controlled by the country’s “foreign enemies” and the police operations are therefore legitimate. The EU should not use these incidents as an excuse to put pressure on Iran.

Should the EU impose punitive measures, there will be an “adequate reaction”. There is even talk in Tehran of breaking off diplomatic relations and expelling the EU ambassadors. In this case, observers expect an end to the EU efforts to save the Vienna nuclear agreement of 2015. Then the Iran sanctions would also be off the table, because of which the actually oil-rich country has been in an acute economic crisis for almost four years.

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