A large number of women and men have been detained in Iran's capital Tehran as police intensified a crackdown on conformity with Islamic dress codes, according to witness reports cited by international media.
ncr-iran )-In several of Tehran's squares, police and vice units have been stopping women for outfits that were deemed un-Islamic. Many were transferred to police stations for temporary detainment, DPA reported citing witnesses.
DPA points out that Iranian police and vice units usually start their crackdowns in the summer season, when women wear lighter clothing due to temperatures that can reach nearly 40 degrees.
All women in Iran, including foreigners, are expected to adhere to the Islamic dress code of gowns or long coats that mask their figures and scarves to hide their hair. Nevertheless, many women in Tehran and other large cities often ignore strict observation of the rules.
The women's dress code has been a controversial issue in Iran since the 1979 Islamic revolution. Official attempts to force women to fully respect the code have so far been futile.
The checks come just as a new moral security plan adopted by Iranian Parliament to counter 'Western cultural invasion' is prohibiting dog ownership and banning men from wearing necklaces and Western-style haircuts.
The new measures also coincided with a call by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for a united anti-Western front by several former Soviet republics and Asian countries, including China, made during the latest summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Kazakhstan's capital Astana on Wednesday.