The government in Tehran considers pet ownership “Western” and worries that Iranians are expressing their distress on social networks.
#pasdecruautéenversles Animaux, #nonauxmeurtresdechien… In social networks, hashtags calling for the protection of animals in Iran are increasing. For a decade, the Islamic regime in Tehran has been trying to introduce a new law to ban pet ownership. Soon, Parliament hopes to approve a bill that will restrict the rights of the public and property owners. An ambition driven by the desire tode-Westernize” the country.
The bill is based on two major axes: the possession of a permit issued by a special committee capable of accommodating a pet and the distribution of fines, in at least 790 euros, for “import, purchase and sale, transportation and storagein some animals (among them cats, turtles or rabbits).
Severe restrictions are in place
This is not the first time that the authorities have restricted pet ownership. They already forbid citizens to walk their dogs in the parks, now this action is considered a crime, arguing the questions “public safety», Pointing to the danger posed by canids. In the eyes of extremist leaders and some members of parliament, walking with your dog tied by your side is not a gesture “Islamic», decodes Elsayed Mohammed, regional director of the Middle East and North Africa of IFAW, an NGO for the protection of animals.
A shorthand he considered wrong and unprecedented: “Never in the history of Islam has the ownership of dogs been prohibited“. Through the centuries, they have always been there, used for guarding and hunting in the Middle East, he said. So the decision is morepolitical rather than cultural or religious“.
In recent years, the Iranian government has stepped up its action “against dogs“. Many media, such as the BBC or theIndependent Persian, condemned the killing of hundreds of animals across the country. One of the most unusual is what happened on Monday July 25, in a refuge in Damavand (North). BBC Persian reported on Twitter that around 1,600 stray dogs were killed by city officials. The head of the environment department denied this, saying that “50 sick dogs belonging to the landfill centershot. Images of dead animals leaked on social media and, in protest, animal rights activists gathered outside the governor’s house in Damavand province.
A good tool to “punish” the Iranians
Iranians are now worried about the future of their animals. Many of them post photos of their partners on networks, wanting to avoid the ridiculousness of finding them “dangerous“. Another user tweeted a photo of two cats, with the caption, “Street animals are very lonely, more endangered than in the wild, where they just fight to survive with other animals. But in town, they face the most dangerous and violent parasite in the world.pointed to the Islamic regime.
“The situation is worrying, many people and animals will sufferblamed Elsayed Mohammed. This can be a great tool to annoy people when needed“. And for Jean-Pierre Digard, emeritus research director of the CNRS, this is one of the objectives behind these measures, to say the least extreme. “Since the election of the new president, the regime has become more rigid“, he analyzed. The authorities wantmarginalize, punish, members of Western-oriented society and show more resistance to them“.