"An Iranian court has handed jail sentences of more than 10 years each to a
young couple who danced in front of one of Tehran’s main landmarks in a video
seen as a symbol of defiance against the regime, activists have said.
Astiyazh Haghighi and her fiance, Amir Mohammad Ahmadi, both in their early
20s, were arrested in early November after a video went viral showing them
dancing romantically in front of the Azadi Tower.
Haghighi was not wearing a headscarf, in defiance of Iran’s strict rules. Women
are also not allowed to dance in public, let alone with a man.
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.
The couple, who already had a following in Tehran as popular Instagram
bloggers, were convicted of “encouraging corruption and public prostitution” as
well as “gathering with the intention of disrupting national security”, it
HRANA cited sources close to their families as saying they had been deprived of
lawyers during the court proceedings, and attempts to secure their release on
bail had been rejected."
*** Xanni ***
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Manager, Serious Cybernetics