A beloved Iranian couple has been sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for dancing in a viral video that angered the Islamic State’s ruling regime.
Istiyazeh Hagighi, 21, and her fiancé, Amir Mohammad Ahmad, 22, were seen in a romantic scene in front of the Azadi Tower, one of the main landmarks in Tehran.
They were seized in early November, the AFP news agency said, because women are not allowed to dance in public in Iran, let alone men.
Haqi also appeared in the video without a headscarf, in solidarity with the September protests Mohsa Amini’s death22, after she was arrested for not adhering to strict hijab rules.
The US-based Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) reported that Haghi and her friend were sentenced this week to 10 and a half years in prison by a revolutionary court in Tehran.
The court stated that the couple – both famous on Instagram – were convicted of “encouraging corruption and public prostitution” as well as “assembly with the aim of disturbing national security”.
Reports said they were also prevented from using the internet and leaving Iran.
Sources close to their families said that they were denied lawyers during the trial procedures, according to Agence France-Presse.
Agence France-Presse reports that Haqiqi is languishing in the notorious Qarchak prison outside Tehran, where activists regularly denounce their conditions.
It was just the latest suppression of protesters The regime’s brutality against women, which has seen at least 14,000 people arrested, according to the United Nations.
In November, a few months after the brutal suppression of the protests, Volker Türk, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said Iran was “now in a full-blown human rights crisis”.
The protests, which used the slogan #WomanLifeFreedom, began in September when Amini died in the custody of the morality police, who took her for “indecent dress”.
Authorities say she suffered a heart attack after being taken to a station to receive an “education,” but her family said she had no heart problems and was covered in bruises.
Hundreds of people have been killed in the unrest so far – and some execution of demonstrators – while thousands more were arrested, including prominent journalists and Iranian personalities.
Hijab became compulsory four years after the 1979 revolution established the Islamic Republic of Iran.
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