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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Six 'happy' Iranian women forced to 'repent' on national television for video

Six Iranian women have been forced to 'repent' on national television for posting a video on YouTube of themselves dancing unveiled with men. The video has garnered nearly 700,000 views since being posted on YouTube on Monday. This is from the first link.
The video was reportedly uploaded to YouTube late last month; one upload of the six dancing in Tehran to Williams' catchy song promoting happiness has already garnered over half a million views on YouTube since being posted Monday.
A source close to those arrested said armed police raided the home of one of them on Sunday, wantonly destroying private property in the house as they arrested the woman and her friends, reports The Daily Beast.
In jail, the six reportedly were not allowed to use the toilet, put in solitary confinement and constantly interrogated about the clip and comments they had made to foreign media. The women were reportedly forced to strip naked and perform squats before female officers.
The persecution and humiliation reached a head on Tuesday, when they were forced on national TV in front of Tehran Chief of Police Hossein Sajedinia. They "confessed" being tricked to appear in the video, while lined up with their backs to the camera and the women appearing with large head coverings.
Sajedinia, in the role of interrogator and morale preacher, praised the crackdown during the TV broadcast, saying "these (agents) were able to identify (the six dancers) within two hours, and within six hours had arrested them all."
Clips of the dancing video shown during the "confession" were blurred out, apparently for "modesty." The national broadcast, in Farsi, can be seen here:
Let's go to the videotape.

Siavash Taravati, who directed and filmed the "criminal" video, said that in the "confession" broadcast it was apparent how terrified the six were.
While the young Iranians were in jail, allegedly Iranian police threatened their families saying that if they spoke to the media their children would not be released.
The six eventually were released, but only after paying a bail of 30 million toman ($10,000), or 40 million toman in the case of one of the women. Reportedly several cell phones, computers and cameras were confiscated as well, in addition to the personal affects destroyed during the arrest.
Given what normally happens to women in Iranian jails, I suppose they were pretty lucky. Still, that must have been a harrowing experience. 

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