CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA)– Two Iranian students at the University of Illinois are speaking out for the women back home who can’t. For their safety, they remain anonymous.
“So Mahsa Amini was visiting Tehran from her home city, and she was stopped by the morality police which is the police that goes around a look at people’s head scarf,” she said.
This U of I graduate student says this problem is not new. She too has been in trouble for how she wore her scarf in Iran.
“This easily could have been me because I’ve even been arrested by that morality police before, it is scary and makes me very angry,” she said.
She moved to the US In 2015 for graduate school and says the issues back home have only grown. Now, she and her friend want to speak up for the women back home who cannot.
“It’s women’s choice deciding what to wear, how to do, and what to do with their body, it’s their choice, and I think that is a universal message to be heard by everyone,” she said.
The woman says while Mahsa’s story sparked outrage, it is not the only issue happening.
“It’s not just about women’s right anymore in Iran, that is just the tip of the iceberg, there has been a lot of different issues in Iran with the government,” she said.
She says there are socioeconomic disparities among people. Now, they hope that people in Central Illinois will stand with them.
“People from here locally can help by contacting their representative or asking them questions about this and IRGC the main people from the government that are on the US sanction list, but they have assets in the United States, and they can travel easily to the US, but that is not a possibility for normal to come here,” she said.
The students say there needs to be global pressure on Iranian leaders. Both hope the protests will send a message that things have to change.
“I think that is the beauty and the power of this movement the way it has been translated throughout the world, it is because there is a woman’s name on this movement and it’s the first counter-revolution led by women,” she said.
There will be a seminar on campus to talk about the issues, more will be posted.