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Iran Arrests Eight Over Internet Posts Of Women Without Hijabs

  • RFE/RL

Iran has arrested eight people in a crack down against Internet posts showing female models who are not covering their heads with an obligatory hijab.

State-controlled television in Tehran said that it identified 170 people in the operation who are alleged to be part of a "network" using Instagram pages -- including 58 models, 51 fashion designers, 59 photographers, and makeup artists.

It said the aim of the alleged network was "to undermine the foundation of family [values] in Iran."

Police have filed criminal charges against 29 people whom they described as the "main managers and networkers."

State television also broadcast what it said was a "confession" by one woman telling Tehran's prosecutor Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi that she posted photos of herself on Instagram to earn money.

The charges against her were not clear.

State television has a history of airing so-called confessions that were made under duress.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said during the weekend that the Internet was a "battlefield" where clerics and seminary students should fight "deviant and erroneous thoughts."

With reporting by Reuters and AP