As anti-hijab protests in Iran intensify with over 41 dead and 700 arrested, a video of a man’s funeral, Javad Heydari, who allegedly died in the crackdown on the protests, has been widely shared where his sister is seen cutting off her hair over his grave.
The powerful symbolic gesture has been employed by Iranian women across the world who are protesting the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. She was arrested by Iran’s morality police for not wearing a hijab in a “proper way” and died while in custody.
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In the video, distraught women are seen throwing flowers onto the grave as a woman, identified as Javad Heydari’s sister, cuts off her hair over his grave. She places the hair atop the flower-covered grave as a group of mourning women stand behind her.
Iranian journalist and activist Masih Alinejad said that by cutting their hair, “Iranian women trying to show their grief and anger”.
Mahsa Amini died after being arrested by Iran’s infamous morality police for allegedly not wearing a hijab the proper way. Following her death, widespread protests have flared up globally.
Most recently, French police yesterday used tear gas and employed anti-riot tactics to prevent hundreds of people protesting in Paris from marching on Tehran’s embassy, AFP reporters and eyewitnesses said.
In London, police made several arrests as officers clashed with protesters trying to break through barriers protecting Iran’s UK embassy.
The government crackdown on the anti-hijab protests in Iran has been widely criticised, especially after the regime restricted communications platforms like WhatsApp, Skype, LinkedIn and Instagram, among others.