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Women and Human Rights in Iran

Thursday 20 October 2016, by siawi3


The new edition of the Foreign Policy Centre’s Iran Human Rights Review (IHRR) sets out some of the critical challenges facing Iranian women and puts them in the context of the more than three decades long struggle for gender equality against a theocratic state. The findings suggest that recent political changes mark a new phase in this struggle, where tensions within the regime can be marked by the mistreatment of women, such as British-Iranian citizen Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, and where even modest efforts to support women’s role in society are seen by factions as a conspiracy against their core Islamic Republic values. Consequently, incendiary claims around national security are increasingly being used as grounds for curtailing women’s freedoms and their rights.

The Iran Human Rights Review: Women and Human Rights is edited by Tahirih Danesh and Dr Sanam Vakil. It contains contributions by: Nahid Husseini, Elahe Amani, Leili Nekounazar, Elaheh Imanian, Shadi Salehian, Maryam Hosseinkhah, Arzoo Osanloo and two pieces by authors based inside Iran who maintain anonymity for their security.

Iran Human Rights Review is available online in English and Persian/Farsi. Please visit: and

The Foreign Policy Centre (FPC)
Unit 1.9, First Floor, The Foundry
17 Oval Way, Vauxhall
London, SE11 5RR
Tel # +44 (0) 203 752 5850 and +44 (0) 203 752 5851

Women and Human Rights [October 2016]

In this latest issue, the Iran Human Rights Review focuses on women and their on-going struggle to access human rights. The review contains contributions from human rights lawyers, activists and defenders, from both inside and outside of Iran. The Iran Human Rights Review: Women and Human Rights, focuses on the need to recognise both the current plight of women in Iran and their role in securing a culture of human rights in Iran despite the legal, cultural and social challenges they face.

Wendi Momen

Tahirih Danesh
Foreign Policy Centre
Sanam Vakil

Undeclared Aspiration: ‘Education for Change’
Nahid Husseini

Gendered diplomacy, human rights and the role of women in making the Iran Deal
Elahe Amani

From Self-Rule to Self-Immolation: Kurdish women’s past and present
Ava Homa

A look at violence against women in Iran

Politics of chicness: How fashion becomes the defiant apparatus
Leili Nekounazar

The Women’s Movement in Iran; Challenges and opportunities
Elaheh Imanian

Women’s mental health and rights in Iran: Unique challenges and opportunities for raising awareness and forging reform-A review and analysis
Shadi Salehian

Forbearance Advocacy and Criminal Sanctioning in Iran
Arzoo Osanloo

Unimplemented laws and the decline in economic opportunities for women: ‘Soup in the bowl but burnt mouth’
Maryam Hosseinkhah

Women’s rights
A Human Rights Lawyer in Iran