The boldness of a woman without a headscarf in an official job: the story of the dismissal of the Iranian ambassador to the United Kingdom

The video of the celebration at the embassy that caused the departure of the Iranian ambassador to the United Kingdom

In Iran, the regime is beginning to face small but persistent challenges from women who, along with their increasing presence in all areas of social life, are resisting compliance with it. The strict teachings imposed by the Islamic Revolution. Gradually, many dare to defy the rules about clothing, even knowing that there will be consequences.

Punishment for Appearing in public without a headscarf, for example, can result in arrest, imprisonment, a fine or flogging. But it becomes a more dangerous transgression if the act takes place within the circles of the Iranian government itself.

On February 11, during the commemoration of the forty-third Iranian Revolution, The presence of a woman who was not veiled while playing the piano with a violinist shocked everyone present The spread of this concert had dire consequences for the staff of the Iranian Embassy in the United Kingdom.

A video posted by an Iranian resident in London on Twitter revealed what happened at the official event and sparked a wide rejection across networks, with comments reaching the highest levels of the Iranian government.

The participation of a non-jihadi pianist in an official work for the Iranian embassy in the United Kingdom hastened the downfall of Mohsen Baharvand (NA)

In addition, anger increased when users noticed a large presence of Iranian diplomats. The writer of the tweet even questioned what benefit the presence of that woman at the ceremony could bring to the Iranian people and unleashed the responses that were also read in the regime’s offices.

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In response to the news and scandal launched by Mr. President Ibrahim Raisi Take a radical decision: He expelled the Iranian ambassador to the United Kingdom, Mohsen Baharvand, and ordered his return to Tehran.

Later, the writer of the tweet wrote: “It is our pleasure that our voice was heard in Iran. Please send a pragmatic ambassador to London who deserves to serve Iran and work only for the benefit of the Iranian people.”

The story first circulated in pro-regime newspapers, with some claiming it was part of a broader shift in Iran’s diplomatic corps by Ebrahim Raisi, who was elected last June. An idea more difficult than the previous one.

Bharvand had been appointed by the Foreign Office before the presidential election, but took office in London in July after the change in the leadership of the ministry. He had previously held the position of deputy director of the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Legal Department under Mohammad Javad Zarif, the former foreign minister.

Ebrahim Raisi, President of Iran
Ebrahim Raisi, President of Iran

Baharvand’s exit from the government comes at a critical time in British-Iranian relations. Iran is about to decide whether to accept Washington’s conditions for the United States’ return to the Iran nuclear deal, including the lifting of several sanctions. Parallel to the nuclear talks, Britain is trying to secure the release of three British-Iranian dual nationals held in Iran.

Therefore, Iran is immersed in Difficult negotiations with Western powers to save the 2015 nuclear deal Returning to the agreement means lifting international sanctions, but the conditions do not convince Tehran, which in recent years has accelerated its atomic program in light of the rejection of the United States in particular.

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Before issuing a response, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian is expected to meet Iran’s Supreme National Security Council on Monday, and a special session in Iran’s parliament is also expected on Tuesday. US long-term commitment.

Read on:

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