Home | English | Publications | Reports | Silencing the Women's Rights Movement in Iran

Silencing the Women's Rights Movement in Iran

more difficult for women, and criminalized the marriage of a non-Iranian to an Iranian woman without proper authorization.75 Article 25 also proposed taxing mihriyyih, the property given to the wife at the time of marriage, if it is uncustomary or unreasonably high." 76 Women's rights activists were successful in convincing the Parliamentary Judicial Committee to "temporarily shelve" the controversial parts of the bill.77

Although Iranian women have made some progress, women are still treated unequally under Iranian law. Women, regardless of their religion, must follow the hejab dress code when in public.78 The legal marriage age is 13 for women and 15 for men. Men may marry up to four permanent wives and an infinite number of temporary wives at any one time.79 Men have absolute rights to divorce while women may initiate divorce only if they meet certain conditions, some of which must have been agreed to in the marriage contract. Mothers may have custody rights over children until they reach the age of seven after which, fathers have automatic custody. Mothers' custody rights are dismissed if they remarry. In case of a custody dispute, the court will decide based on the welfare of the child.80 Fathers and paternal grandfathers continue to have absolute guardianship rights over children when their fathers die. Mothers can never be awarded guardianship rights.81

Women do not have equitable inheritance rights as wives, mothers, sisters or daughters. Even if a wife is the sole survivor to her husband's estate, she may not inherit more than a quarter of the estate; if she is not the sole survivor, she is limited to an eighth of the estate. The civil code provides that only Iranian fathers may pass on their citizenship to their children.82

A woman's testimony is regularly discounted as worth half that of a man's.83 Under some circumstances, relying only on the testimony of women (regardless of the number) can constitute a false accusation. In the case of murder or injury, the law sets an amount known as diyeh - blood money - to be paid to victims

[75] 2007 Family Protection Bill, Foundation for Iranian Studies, available at http://www.fis-iran.org/en/women/laws/07fpb; See also Shadi Sadr, Ishkalat-i Qanun-i Himayat az Khanivadih [Problems of the Family Protection Law], Mardomak, September 9, 2008, available at http://www.mardomak.org/news/family_protection_law_def/; and Gholam-Hossein Ra'isi, Mu'zalat-i Layihihyih Himayat az Khanivadih [Hurdles of the Family Protection Bill], Mardomak, April 8, 2010, available at http://www.mardomak.org/news/iran_family_law/.
[76] Critics of the provision note that under Islamic law, the minimum compensation a wife is guaranteed at the time of marriage and in the case of divorce is the mihriyyih and taxing it is exceptionally discriminatory against women. Matn-i Kamil-i Layihiyih Himayat az Khanivadih 1386 [Complete Text of the Family Protection Act of 2008], Iran Gender Equality (February 17, 2010), available at http://familylaw.irangenderequality.com/spip.php?article4.
[77] Chand Hamsariyih Mardan va Maliyat bar Mihriyyih Itibar Nadarand [Multiple Wives for Mena and Taxing of the Mihriyyih Are not Legal], Mardomak, November, 18, 2008, available at http://www.mardomak.org/news/articles_family_protection_law_removal/.
[78] Khorasani, supra note 73, at 122.
[79] Id. at 118.
[80] Qanun-i Madaniyyih Jumhuriyyih Islamiyyih Iran [Civil Code of the Islamic Republic of Iran], (1307) [1928], arts. 1119, 1133, 1169 [hereinafter Civil Code], available at http://www.unhcr.org/refworld/country,LEGAL,,LEGISLATION,IRN,,49997adb27,0.html.
[81] Khorasani, supra note 73, at 118.
[82] Civil Code supra note 80, arts. 906, 907, 913, 949, 976 (2).
[83] See for example, Qanun-i Mujazat-i Islami [Islamic Penal Code] 1379 [2000], art. 74 [hereinafter Iran Penal Code], available at http://iranhrdc.org/httpdocs/English/aadel.htm.

« 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 »
  • Email to a friend Email to a friend
  • Print version Print version
  • Plain text Plain text

Tagged as:

Sexual Violence, Gender Rights, Death Penalty, Political Killings, Executions, Torture, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment, Punishment, Personal Liberty, Arbitrary Detention, Travel Restrictions, Due Process, Right to an Attorney, Illegal Search and Seizure, Free Speech, Right to Protest, Protests, Free Association, Child Rights, Political Freedom, Equality Before the Law, Discrimination