Young woman in protests, becomes new symbol of defiance

Women are compelled to cover their hair in public in Iran, which as a Shiite theocratic state follows a strict interpretation of Sharia law. The morality police – officially known as the Gasht-e Ershad; or “guidance patrol” – are responsible for enforcing this dress code. But the law does not precisely define the “correct” way to wear the veil. So it is effectively defined by the authorities as they see fit. Iranian clerics and politicians ban women from wearing short coats above the knee, tight trousers and jeans with holes in them – as well as brightly coloured clothing.