Iranian state-run media said that security forces arrested five shopkeepers and shut down 13 stores in Alborz province, northwest of the capital Tehran, for selling “unconventional clothing”.
According to the IRNA state-run News Agency, the head of the Alborz Tazir Organization said today that the 13 shops were closed after inspections were carried out in 150 clothing stores in the province.
“Buying and selling clothes with Latin letters, signs and designs for Western music bands and groups and in general, clothing that conflicts with Islamic culture and values is banned in shops,” Ali Akbar Mokhtari added.
The official said that the five people were arrested for “spreading Western culture and selling clothes and symbols of Satanism”.
The Iranian regime has been imposing its brand of Islam and lifestyle choices on Iranian citizens since it came into power 40 years ago and deems anything outside of this structure as “Western” and “unconventional”.
Men and women are regularly harassed and arrested by Iran’s moral police for not observing the regime’s strict dress code.
In July, Iran’s Chief of Police said that 32 government organizations were charged with carrying out social suppression and curbing civil liberties.
Hossein Ashtari also cited 26 systems charged with controlling “chastity and the hijab”. It would seem that these 26 organizations are specifically responsible for cracking down on women.
Also in July, the regime announced that new social media channels in Instagram and Iran’s own homegrown messaging services would be launched for ordinary Iranians to report each other’s “immoral” conduct to the Guidance Prosecutor.
According to the Revolutionary Guards affiliated Tasnim News Agency, the head of the Tehran’s Guidance Prosecutor’s Office detailed what the state deemed “immoral”, instructing ordinary Iranians to spy on each other, taking photos and videos to gather information from their fellow citizens to report to the law.
Despite the regime’s crack down on civil liberties, Iranians, especially women, have become more defiant with many of them refusing to wear the compulsory veil in public.