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Homechevron_rightWorldchevron_rightIranian journalist...

Iranian journalist refuses to wear headscarf, President cancels interview

Iranian journalist refuses to wear headscarf, President cancels interview

New York: Iranian-born journalist Christiane Amanpour said that President Ebrahim Raisi cancelled an interview with her for refusing to wear a headscarf.

The veteran journalist tweeted that she politely declined the demand to wear a headscarf because she is in New York where there is no law or tradition regarding it. She also pointed out that no previous Iran president has required it of her when she interviewed them outside Iran.

Amanpour is the chief international anchor of CNN. She was born in Britain to an Iranian father. The 64-year-old has a show on US public broadcaster PBS and was ready to interview Raisi on Wednesday. She was set to meet him on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly when an aide demanded that she cover her hair.

He added that the demand is because of the "situation in Iran". The aide also made it clear that the interview would not happen if she did not wear a headscarf and that it was a "matter of respect".

Her decision comes at a time when women across Iran are cutting their hair and burning headscarves in protest of the custodial death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. She was arrested for not covering her entire head as per the dress code imposed by Iran's regime. While authorities at the detention centre said that Amini had a heart attack and fell into a coma, some reports suggest that she suffered injuries due to torture.

Amanpour said she could not agree to the unprecedented and unexpected condition and CNN walked away. "The interview didn't happen. As protests continue in Iran and people are being killed, it would have been an important moment to speak with President Raisi."

"Protests are sweeping Iran & women are burning their hijabs after the death last week of Mahsa Amini, following her arrest by the "morality police". Human rights groups say at least 8 have been killed. Last night, I planned to ask President Raisi about all this and much more," she wrote on Twitter. The journalist also posted a photograph in which she is sitting on a chair without a headscarf facing an empty chair which was meant for the Iranian president.

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TAGS:Christiane Amanpour Ebrahim Raisi Iranian President Iran Iran headscarf row Mahsa Amini Mahsa Amini death 
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