The recent event of the death of 22-year-old Miss. Mahsa Amini in an Iranian hospital on September 16 after her detention by the morality police of Iran, has resulted in countrywide protests and condemnation of the event by world leaders. The issue has resulted in an Anti-hijab movement in Iran.
The issue, at some points, might have genuine and of indigenous status. However, the support of the international community, especially the USA and European groups, has presented the notion of a foreign hand in the fuelling of the incident. This stance is quite more reliable and understandable as the leader of the hijab movement is a journalist, living in an FBI safe house in New York.
This journalist namely, Miss. Masih Alinejad has been in New York since 2014 and has met with the highest officials representing the government of the United States, which has a track record of meddling and engaging in regime changes in different countries for their national interests.
Even in Iran, back in 1953, Dr. Musadiq, an elected head of the state was overthrown by a military coup with the help of the CIA. More importantly, she has been actively manipulating Iranian women through social media platforms provoking them to remove their headscarves and send her pictures so that she can post online, and go against the state’s law, which speaking generally, is a matter of attempting to damage the sovereignty of the state.
For this matter, the support of the very same governments who have been actively punishing hard the Iranian nation through the imposition of sanctions since the Iranian revolution resulting in inflation, poverty, and lack of medicines imports, puts a big question mark on the legitimacy or true intentions of the protests and protestors.
Since the revolution Iranians have been hit hard by sanctions. The biggest impacts these sanctions have left are on the economy and medical sector of the Iranian nation. Due to these sanctions, international companies have withdrawn from Iran and have even stopped conducting financial activities there due to fear of being sanctioned.
This has not just stopped Iranians from making trade transactions but has created hurdles in the import of essential medicines, medical equipment, and other necessary means for medical sectors. This has risked the lives of thousands of Iranians. So the support of the same governments responsible for this humanitarian crisis in Iran makes this even more controversial and suspicious.
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Also, there is another angle and the timing of protests makes it look like a well-executed plan to make the Iranians accept the new nuclear deal. UK foreign secretary was quoted as saying, “Protests show ‘another path’ possible for Iran.” He was referring to the acceptance of the nuclear deal, abandonment of missile advancements, and cooperation.
The recent talks on the nuclear deal are having a pause as Iran is not willing to sign the treaty unless it gets guarantees from the US ensuring a permanent solution to the sanctions. The Europeans are saying the ball is now in the court of Iran. Overall, the issue may be having a genuine cause as the Islamic Republic of Iran has been quite tight on protesters and those who violate the laws or challenge the writ of the state.
Keeping in consideration that similar and even more hurtful, inhuman, and cruel moves against women in Palestine and Kashmir are being carried out which Western powers choose to not address, the timing when the nuclear deal is to be signed, makes the event more doubtful and suspicious of a possible foreign intervention and incitement. Seeing the interference, Iranian officials recently summoned the ambassadors of European countries asking them not to interfere in the internal matters of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Bilal Hyder Simair is a Student of International Relations at the National University of Modern Languages. Islamabad. He can be reached at Bilalhyder313@gmail.com