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If someone forces me to remove my scarf, I will protest: Malala | The Express Tribune

Protests broke out in Iran over the death of a 22-year-old girl, Mahsa Amini, who was arrested by the “morality police” for allegedly breaking hijab rules. She never made it back alive. Celebrities across the world have lashed out at the horrific tragedy. Supermodel Bella Hadid was among the first to speak up on Instagram. Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai and American singer Halsey followed suit.

Posting a picture of Amini from when she was in the hospital, Bella captioned the post, “Just wow. Rest in peace, Mahsa Amini. You did not deserve this. Sending blessings to her family and loved ones.” She reposted a string of images uploaded by photographer Amanda de Cadenet, who wrote, “This is a devastating and shocking story of a woman who was allegedly beaten and killed for wearing her hijab ‘incorrectly’. Mahsa Amini was taken by ‘morality police’ to be educated about the hijab and never made it back alive.”

Malala shared on her Instagram Stories, “Whatever a woman chooses to wear, she has the right to decide for herself. As I have said before: If someone forces me to cover my head, I will protest. If someone forces me to remove my scarf, I will protest.” She added, “I am calling for justice for Mahsa Amini.”

Meanwhile, Halsey shared, “‘My body, my choice’ is not a monolith reserved for women of the west. Every woman deserves the right to decide if hijab is her path. Or if it is not.” Halsey said that while local media outlets in Tehran are reporting that Mahsa suffered a heart attack, “her family and activists are certain the death was caused by police brutality.” She added that the victim’s relatives are demanding the release of unaltered CCTV footage, depicting what truly happened. Halsey continued, “I am devastated about this news and what it means for the activists erupting across Iran in response to this tragedy.”

The singer concluded with, “There are two simple concepts at hand: It is the choice of the woman. And no woman deserves to die at the hands of law enforcement for her personal expression of faith or lack thereof. Mahsa Amini had no choice. Not even the choice to live or die. The world is mourning her with great force.”


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