Iranian Regime Judiciary Blocks Anti-Domestic Violence Bill, Citing Fears that Men Would Be Punished for “Minor Violations”
The Iranian regime’s Judiciary struck another blow against women’s rights recently when it blocked passage of the Provision of Security for Women Against Violence (PSW) bill. The all-male Judiciary called for fundamental revisions to the bill, citing concerns that jailing men for domestic abuse might weaken the family structure.
The PSW bill would impose penalties, including jail time, for men found guilty of domestic violence. The regime has blocked passage of this bill in one form or another for thirteen years. Meanwhile, women in Iran are left with no recourse when dealing with abusive spouses.
#Iranian regime’s Judiciary that has a habit of imprisoning ppl 4 any minor charge that resulted in prison overcrowding now uses policy of de-imprisonment to justify blocking the 'Provision of Security for Women Against Violence bill' for 13 yrs https://t.co/GM9NxqDenH
— NCRIWomen'sCommittee (@womenncri) February 20, 2019
Gholam-Hossein Mohseni Eje’ii, the regime’s First Deputy Minister and Spokesman of the Judiciary, commented on the Judiciary’s call for revisions. “The objective of adopting this bill is to fortify the family environment so that women, spouses, and others, would feel secure in every respect,” he said. “Now, the question is whether the articles contained in the PSW bill provide such security or not.”
Eje’ii claimed that the Iranian regime has a policy of “de-imprisonment” and that the bill prescribes jail time for every “minor violation.” In order to violate the law, one would have to physically assault a woman, so Eje’ii’s second statement is in keeping with the regime’s general attitude that women are of little value. As for his claim about “de-imprisonment,” Iran’s prisons are so overcrowded that inmates are forced to sleep on floors and in hallways. Iranian prisons are currently filled to between three and four times their capacity, so if the regime’s policy is to de-imprison its citizens, the policy is a spectacular failure.
“Greatest Blow to Women and Families”
Eje’ii went on to justify the Judiciary’s demand for revisions, saying, “The PSW bill contained numerous problems so much that it could not be reformed. The solution is to draft a totally different bill or to reform the existing bill only in collaboration with the government.”
Hadi Sadeqi, the Cultural Deputy of the Judiciary, used similar arguments when he claimed that the PSW bill was fundamentally flawed. Sadeqi claimed that the bill could not support women while sending their husbands to jails. He further characterized the imprisonment of domestic abusers as “the greatest blow to women and families.”
Sadeqi said, “When a woman sends her husband to jail, then that man can never be a husband for her again, and the woman must accept the risk of getting divorced in advance.”
The idea that it is better for a woman to live in an unsafe home with a violent man than to see that man face consequences for his actions is reprehensible. The fact that the possibility of divorce should lay at the feet of the victim of domestic violence and used as a deterrent for her to report his crime is abhorrent. The ideology behind the statement that a man “can never be a husband” after being called to account for a violent attack on his wife is disgusting.
The failure, after thirteen years, of the Iranian regime to pass the PSW bill and the justifications by the Judiciary after the most sabotage reveal the ugly truth about the regime’s attitude toward women. The level of disdain by the mullahs toward women is so ingrained as to be unchangeable. The women and families of Iran deserve better.
An Alternative for Iran
The MEK and National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) are fighting for a better future for Iran. Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, President-elect of the NCRI, has a ten-point plan for a free and democratic Iran that includes gender equality and equal representation in government as a key tenet. The men and women of the MEK and the NCRI are working for an Iran in which families are strong and violence against women is not accepted or justified. When women are oppressed, society as a whole suffers. No one is truly free in a society where half of those living in it are deprived of basic rights.