An Iran couple has been handed decade-long jail time for filming themselves while dancing.
It was reported that Astiyazh Haghighi, 21, and her fiance, Amir Mohammad Ahmadi, 22, both Iranians, were arrested in November 2022 for recording their romantic dance video in front of Tehran’s Azadi Tower.
The authorities arrested them after the video went viral on social media.
According to The Guardian, “A revolutionary court in Tehran sentenced them each to 10 years and six months in prison, as well as imposing bans on using the internet and leaving Iran, the US-based Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) said.”
In the video, Haghighi was not wearing a headscarf while out with her partner in public, which defies the country’s strict rules.
They were both arrested and later charged for “encouraging corruption and public prostitution,” in the state.
BBC reported that the couple posted the video on their Instagram accounts in November 2022. Both Iranians collectively have two million followers on their Instagram.
Before the arrest, Astiyazh’s family home was raided in the name of a search operation.
“It is unclear how long the sentence is for each of the separate convictions they are facing. They have each been sentenced to a total of 10 and a half years – a combined sentence for the charges,” wrote BBC.
“If their verdicts are upheld, they will have to serve the longest one of those sentencing terms.”
Sources close to the young couple said they were not allowed to hire any lawyers for their court proceedings, and their bail was also rejected.
“It said Haghighi was now in Qarchak prison for women, outside Tehran, whose conditions are regularly condemned by activists,” per The Guardian.
Iran’s government has arrested and tortured several citizens for raising their voices for freedom of choice.
It all started with the brutal murder of a 22-year-old Iranian woman, Mahsa Amini, at the hands of the morality police for not wearing her headscarf properly.
Following her death, nationwide protests against the government and its dehumanizing policies erupted in the country.
“At least four people have been executed after convictions related to the protests, and hundreds were swept up in mass-arrests. According to HRANA, at least 506 people have been killed in the Iranian authorities’ violent crackdown on the protests, which have died down in recent months,” CBS News reported.
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