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Solidarity with Iranian Women

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP

Dr Rosalie Woodruff MP  -  Thursday, 14 September 2023

Tags: Women, Violence, Equality

Dr WOODRUFF (Franklin - Leader of the Greens) - Mr Speaker, 'jin, jiyan, azadi' - this is the rallying cry of Iranian women today. Jin, jiyan, azadi means 'woman, life, liberty'. This Saturday, 16 September, is the anniversary of the murder of the beautiful young Iranian woman Jina Mahsa Amini. This obscene act has triggered a year of ongoing public defiance against the Iranian Islamic regime by incredibly brave women and their male allies. Jina Mahsa Amini was a 20-year-old Kurdish woman. She was bashed and murdered by the morality police of Iran for the crime of showing her hair.

At her funeral, we saw the extraordinary sight of brave Iranian women ripping off their hijabs and waving them in the wind, grieving, and in solidarity with women looking for freedom in Iran. Her death has been a galvanising flashpoint for women and male allies against the cruel and oppressive Sepah, the Islamic state militia, whose role is to crush so-called deviant movements.

The crime of Mahsa and so many other women victims and survivors is the crime of representing their female selves in public. The Greens acknowledge the bravery of these women who continue to flagrantly resist in public and on social media. They do this even with the knowledge they have the great risk of brutality, emotional and physical torture, lengthy imprisonment and execution by gruesome means.

Hadis Najafi was 20, she was seen dancing on social media with her hair swinging free before being shot six times for the crime of liberating her hair. There are many images openly filmed on social media of public resistance. A young woman standing on the roof of a car surrounded by protesters, male and female, whirling her hijab around her bare head. In south east Iran, a woman quietly removing her headscarf and waving it around the town square with her two young daughters standing beside her. In Tehran yesterday, a mother filming her daughter walking ahead of her through the street, bare head, bare shoulders in an act of the most extraordinary courage. We acknowledge the solidarity and strength of Iranian women and men.

At Tehran University, two months ago, 60 students were barred from university for defying the hijab law. Security teams violently raided dormitories and expelled students for sharing social media posts in support of protesters and people sentenced to death. One student posted:

There are those who lost their eyes, there are those who were murdered. Compared to what they have suffered for the freedom of Iran, my suspension is nothing.

Young women in Ekbatan posted a video in March of themselves dancing outside their apartment block to a song by Rihanna and Selena Gomez, unveiled, revelling in their bodies and long flowing hair. It went viral. The regime can see just how the tide of resistance is growing.

Zainab Kazemi, this week, courageously removed her hijab at an engineers' gathering in Tehran. She has been sentenced to 74 lashes, but posted that she has no regrets and refuses to be silenced by the authoritarian mullahs.

The journalist Nazila Maroufian, who interviewed Jina Mahsa Amini 's father, has been sexually assaulted. She is now in prison on a hunger strike in protest of the violence and sexual abuse by the oppressors. She posted her voicemail from prison detailing her mistreatment by the Islamic regime. Nazila has been arrested four times in under a year but she still posts unveiled photos after each release, declaring Iranian women will not be silenced.

As the anniversary of Jina's murder nears, the arrests are escalating. Last week, Jina's uncle was arrested. Ten days ago, Javad, a 35-year-old man was sentenced to death and executed for protesting the brutal murder of Mahsa Amini to the hijab police.

I want to acknowledge the many men who have stood to resist the murderous regime. A specific tactic of the regime is to blind people who are protesting. All of these people were blinded. Sadiq Sufi[6:38:55], 27, posted: 'You shot my eyes, but my heart is still beating'.

[6:39:00], 23, who lost his vision after going to help a woman bleeding on the street during a protest, said, 'My eyes are sacrificed for my people'.

[6:39:10], shot and blinded for participating in the revolution of 'woman, life, freedom' said, 'The voice of my eyes is louder than any scream'.

[6:39:20] is 30 years old. The Iranian regime agent shot him in the face and blinded him. He always smiles in his pictures and says, 'They took my eye, but they can never take my hope and my smile'.

[6:39:37] was also blinded in one eye and said, 'I will continue with one eye because before there were many things that could not be seen, but now I see things clearly'.

[6:39:50], 23, posted last week, still boldly walking unveiled in public defiance of the mandatory hijab laws, although her beautiful face has been blinded by the regime.

Her message, with other Iranian women, is: 'We will stand firm, and it's the regressive mullahs who must leave.'

We stand in solidarity with Iranian women and men against the regime, and I will be attending a protest in the honour of the women of Iran and their allies, who have sacrificed so much, this Saturday, here on the parliament lawns, organised by Tasmanian Iranians.

The regime is committing crimes against humanity and crimes that should be labelled apartheid against women. We honour the resistance against this oppression of women's bodies and of women's right to expose and express their female selves.