Iranian women protest hijab as defiant headscarf demonstrations spread

She was released following pressure and a publicity campaign led by the country's most prominent human rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh.

One of the women who removed her headscarf and waved it on a stick staged her protest in the Tehran's busy Enqelab Street.

Young women standing tall and proud on the streets of Iran with their hair uncovered, defiantly waving their discarded headscarves on the end of sticks and in direct violation of the country's strict laws that force women to cover their hair. One has reportedly been detained by the authorities, while the fates of the others are unclear.

"The first demonstrations against the hijab took place a few days after the revolution on March 8, 1979".

She said women in Iran want to have control over their own bodies. The videos and photos showed individual women in separate locations in Tehran and Isfahan.

The Girl of Enghelab Street, nicknamed so because of the name of the road where she took her head-scarf off in protest, has spurred many other women in Iran to do the same. This woman stood atop a utility box for 10 minutes before officers arrested her, the Guardian learned.

Breaking the rules can result in fines of up to 500,000 rials (£17) and up to two months in prison.

Ms Bahraini says she received reports law enforcement officials arrested the woman on the spot and transferred her to a nearby detention centre.

Since Ms Movahed's release, there has been an explosion of young women on social media following in her footsteps and the images are now spreading like insane.

Women showing their hair in public can be jailed for up to two months or fined $25 (aprox Rs 1500).

In late December, police said they would no longer arrest women for failing to observe the code.

Rights lawyer Sotoudeh said the protests were an indication that many women are fed up with the obligatory hijab and predicted they would continue.

Iran's clerically dominated authorities insist that women, even foreign visitors, must cover their head and hair in public with a scarf, known as the hijab. Alinejad also created the campaign #whitewednesdays previous year, which called on women to wear white in protest of the strict laws.

Women are only allowed to show their face, hands and feet in public and are supposed to wear only modest colours.

  • Jon Douglas