Iran Bans Women From Featuring in Ads After Ice Cream Commercial, Cites Hijab, Chastity Rules

Anger over an advertisement that aired in Iran, showcasing a woman eating ice cream, has led to the country banning women from featuring in advertisements. As per the Mirror, Iran’s Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance made this call, citing the state’s strict “chastity rule.” The announcement came shortly after the Islamic leaders of the country got furious over an ice cream commercial featuring a woman wearing a hijab and biting into a chocolate ice cream stick. As per the publication, Iranian clerics, who were enraged by the advert, urged the officials to sue the ice cream manufacturer. In a letter issued by Iran’s Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, they stated that the advertisement went “against public decency” and further, they believed that it was an “insult” to “women’s values”.

The letter, which was sent to the nation’s art and cinema schools, quoted the ministry citing the “hijab and chastity rules” for the ban which stops women from featuring in any commercial. The letter reportedly added that the ban complies with the rulings issued by the Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution.

In addition, it also re-emphasizes the long-enforced country’s rules and regulations related to commercial ads, which reportedly prohibit the “instrumental use” of not only women but also children and men. However, according to Mirror, the interpretation of “instrumental use” varies depending on how hardline the ruling administration is at a given time.

This ban comes after Iranian women participated in the social media campaign against the hijab enforcement street patrols by the Islamic Republic. Since the Islamic revolution of 1979, which led to the increasing religious conservative laws, the hijab for women has been made compulsory in Iran. The ruling has stayed in place, despite women in the country protesting against it time and again and even facing severe punishments for their activism.

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