Iranian state media dismisses claim that the morality police has been disbanded following months-long protests

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Mahsa Amini
(Source : Twitter Leah Rimini)

Jakarta, IO – The death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini who was arrested by Iran’s sharia (morality) police for allegedly not wearing hijab (headscarf) properly in September has sparked widespread and protracted demonstrations in the country.

To quell more than two months of protests, there was claim that Iran has disbanded the notorious morality police as per the statement of Iran’s Attorney General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri during a religious conference, reported Merdeka, Tuesday (6/12).

“The morality police has nothing to do with the judiciary system. The same source that created it in the past, from the same place it has shut down. Of course, the judiciary system will continue its surveillance of social behaviours across society,” said Montazeri.

However, state-owned television station Al-Alam dismissed the claim that the morality police, known locally as known as Gasht-e Ershad (Guidance Patrol), has been abolished.

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“No official of the Islamic Republic of Iran has said that the Guidance Patrol has been shut,” Al-Alam said Sunday afternoon. “Some foreign media have attempted to interpret these words by the prosecutor-general as the Islamic Republic retreating from the issue of Hijab and modesty and claim that it is due to the recent riots.”

The morality police were formed during President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad administration with the aim to “spread a culture of modesty and the hijab.” They began their patrols in 2006. (un)