An Iranian anti-Hijab activist living in Turkey has been released hours after being detained by the Turkish police amid concerns that she could be deported back to Iran.
Mariam Shariatmadari, who was detained in Tehran in February 2018 and later sentenced to one year in prison for removing her scarf in public, said on Instagram on September 7 that she was held by Turkish police "for no reason" in the southwestern city of Denizli, and that she could be deported along with several others.
She called on her supporters to spread the news about her arrest. Hours later, she was reported to have been released.
Turkey-based lawyer Mousa Barzin, who had spoken to Shariatmadari while she was in detention, told RFE/RL's Radio Farda that she had lived in Turkey on a tourist visa for a year and that about 7 months ago, after the expiry of her visa, she had asked for asylum.
"It’s not clear whether her asylum request has been reviewed or rejected but the reason why she has been put under supervision is her illegal stay in Turkey," Barzin added in a September 8 telephone interview.
Shariatmadari was among dozens of Iranian women who publicly protested the compulsory hijab in 2018 by removing their headscarves in public. They became known as the "Girls of Revolution Street" with authorities accusing them of "encouraging corruption" by removing their hijab.
Shariatmadari was reportedly injured after police pushed her off a utility box in the Iranian capital where she was waving her headscarf to protest the hijab rule, which requires women to cover their hair and body in public.
A video of the incident posted on social media went viral.
The hijab rule became mandatory after the 1979 revolution and the implementation of Islamic law.