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The high stakes of hijab protests in Iran

Screenshot from CBC News' The National program, showing Vida Movahed waiving her head scarf in the air.
Vida Movahed waving her head scarf in the air in Tehran. Photo: Screenshot from CBC News' The Nation broadcast.

About 30 women have been arrested in Iran as a result of hijab protests that began in December when one woman, Vida Movahed, silently waved her hijab in the air for an hour atop a utility box on the crowded Enghelab Street in Tehran.

Why it matters: In a country where women have been punished for not observing "Islamic values" in public, this is a bold move. Haleh Esfandiari, Director Emerita and Fellow at the Middle East program of the Wilson Center, told Axios that the protests are "very interesting, very bold, very courageous," but "on the other hand, this has been going on in Iran for the last couple of years in different ways."