Iranians outraged over arrest of teenager for Instagram dancing clips

Cheryl Sanders
July 11, 2018

Teenager Maedah Hojbari, who has tens of thousands of followers on Instagram, regularly posts videos and images of herself without a headscarf, which is a mandatory piece of clothing for women in Iran when going into public spaces.

Maedeh Hojabri, who was born in Tehran, practiced gymnastics for few years before participating in the sport of Parkour, a training discipline using movement that developed from military obstacle course, which is the reason for her current accusation.

Maedeh Hojabri was arrested by Iranian police after she posted a video of herself dancing. To the tune of Western and Iranian pop and rap music, the teenager bopped and twirled in her bedroom without wearing the compulsory Islamic headscarf or hijab.

"I had some followers and these videos were for them".

Often in these cases, such statements are made under duress in Iran.

A local news website reported that Hojabri and three other people were detained on similar charges and released on bail in recent weeks.

Many people think authorities will end up banning the photo and video sharing app. Facebook and Twitter are already filtered in the country. "30 percent of social media celebrities have been in Tehran city", Toraj Kazemi, the head of FATA, told ILNA news agency.

"It wasn't for attracting attention", the woman said in the broadcast, visibly shaken and crying. Last Friday, she and other detainees, whose identity could not be confirmed, appeared on Iranian TV. I did not want to encourage others to do the same.

"For centuries people have uncovered themselves and danced and this religion wasn't harmed", Iranian cleric Mohammad-Reza Zaeri wrote on his Instagram page.

The Iranian government has put several restrictions on the public role of women based on Islamic Sharia laws. According to BBC's video description, this was just months after a group of young Iranians were arrested for dancing to Pharrell William's Happy.

Other reports by iNewsToday