Connect with us

News

Iran: Musician faces jail for working with women dancers, singers | News

Published

on


Iranian musician Mehdi Rajabian has said he is under house arrest as he awaits trial for working with female dancers and singers, in the country’s latest move to stop female artists from performing.

Rajabian, 30, said he was arrested on August 10 following media reports that his latest project will include women singing and the publication of a video of a woman dancing to his music – both of which can be deemed immoral under Iranian law.

Iran’s Justice Ministry and the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance did not respond to Reuters news agency’s requests for comment.

“Even if I go to prison hundreds of times, I need female singing in my project, I need female dance,” said Rajabian, who has been jailed twice before over his music.

“Whenever I feel the need to produce this music, I will definitely produce it. I do not censor myself,” he told Reuters via text message from the northern city of Sari where is currently out on bail.

Gaza’s 11-year-old rapper

Iran has long censored art and music and arrested hundreds of performers under vaguely defined morality laws that target women and sexual minorities, according to Human Rights Watch.

There are no laws banning women in music but religious decisions issued under Iran’s Islamic rulers, who came to power in the 1979 revolution, have been used arbitrarily, said Hadi Ghaemi, executive director of the Center for Human Rights in Iran.

“The government would like to propagate … a traditional attitude towards women’s presence in public in general,” he said. “It doesn’t have to be about performance.”

Laws limiting women’s freedom

The Iranian government faced nationwide protests last year, sparked by fuel price hikes, which were met with a violent crackdown.

Many young Iranians are disillusioned with laws that limit women’s freedom, with fines and jail terms for having their hair uncovered or for wearing clothes deemed immodest. Many have protested by removing their hijabs in public in online videos.

The video which led to Rajabian’s latest arrest features Iranian dancer Helia Bandeh, who lives outside Iran, performing to a track from his 2019 peace album Middle Eastern by Sony Music, which features about 100 artists.

Rajabian spent three months in solitary confinement in 2013 for propaganda against the state. In 2015, he served two years behind bars until he was released after a 40-day hunger strike.

Freemuse, a non-profit that supports freedom of artistic expression, said at least 11 artists were prosecuted or sentenced to jail in 2019, with women targeted for performing for mixed – rather than all-female – audiences.

Negar Moazzam was investigated for singing solo in traditional costume and her Instagram account was taken down after a video of the performance went viral on social media, Freemuse said.

It also said male musicians Ali Ghamsari and Hamid Askari were banned from performing in Iran after they allowed women to sing during their concerts, with authorities turning off the sound to stop the women being heard during both shows.

“This has been happening … because of one-sided interpretations of religious doctrine supported by political power,” said Srirak Plipat, executive director of Freemuse.

Meanwhile, Rajabian is undeterred by the latest prison threat as he has been living in isolation for a long time.

“I have been completely alone at home for years,” he said. “It was as if I had been transferred from a smaller prison to a larger one.”

SOURCE:
Reuters news agency





Source – www.aljazeera.com

News

Muntu Blocked in Kamwenge

Published

on

Alliance for National Transformation presidential candidate Gen. Mugisha Muntu has been blocked from campaigning in Kamwenge according to a statement he released earlier today.Below is the full statement:

STATEMENT
Today in Kamwenge, as we have done since the start of the campaign season, we headed out to speak with the people. We had earlier in the week agreed on the venue with security agencies. No one had anticipated that it would rain as much as it did, making it impossible for us or the people to access.

After identifying an alternative place only 100m away from the original venue, negotiating with the owner and communicating the same to the public, we headed to the second venue only to be stopped by police.

Our policy has always been to do all we can to be reasonable, even in the face of unreasonable action on the part of the state. We engaged the police leadership in a civilized, respectable manner well knowing that they intended to not only frustrate us, but cause us to act in ways that would give them an excuse to cause chaos. This was on top of their intimidating the radio we had booked and duly paid to appear on.

While we are confident that we are on the right side of both the law and reason, we have chosen not to endanger the lives of our supporters or the general public by escalating the situation. We will do everything humanly possible to avoid a single life being lost or blood being shed on account of our campaign.

And yet this truth remains: the regime’s days are numbered.

ChangeYouCanTrust

CountryBeforeSelf

Continue Reading

News

Is Johnson Byabashaija courting Enid Kukunda for protection?

Published

on

The very amiable Commissioner General of Prisons Canon Johnson Byabashaija was recently sighted with President Y K Tibuhaburwa Museveni’s second wife Enid Kukunda as the two had a very secretive meeting in one of the city hangouts.

According to our informers, the two seem to be in a deep conversation that they wouldn’t allow a housefly pass around. However, sources further reveal that Byabashaija could have courted the second lady for protection given that he has amassed a lot of wealth and could be a subject of investigations.

Our sources reveal that Byabashaija who carries himself as Mr.I know it all hasn’t met Madam Enid alone but a host of others with connections to the centre of power in the country.

We will bring you more detail

Continue Reading

News

Bobi Wine released on Bail

Published

on

Presidential candidate and kyadondo East legislator Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu has been realeased on bail by the Iganga magistrates court where he appeared to defend himself against accusations of flouting COVID-19 campaign SOPs. A defiant Kyagulanyi took the opportunity to blast the incumbent Yoweri Museveni, whom he accuses of using state power to quell dissident.

This follows a tense week that has seen thousands injured and several dead following Hon. Kyagulanyi’s arrest earlier this week. Demonstrations and riots erupted in many parts of the country and heavy police and army deployment was seen all over the country.

Continue Reading

Trending