A 17-year-old Iranian girl was arrested for dancing to pop music in trending online videos.
The teenager, Maedeh Hojabri, was arrested after she posted hundreds of videos on Instagram, in which she danced to Persian pop songs.
She was arrested and was made to cry and show remorse in a broadcast on Iranian state television.
Since the case emerged, the country’s judiciary and state broadcaster, IRIB, has come under intense criticism nationwide.
Many Iranians even posted their own dance videos on social media in solidarity with the young girl.
The Iranian National Parliament on Wednesday weighed in, and criticised the arrest of the teenager.
The criticism came after the case attracted widespread outrage across the country.
“People do not have drinking water in some parts of the country there are numerous corruption scandals and instead of dealing with these issues, you’re concerning yourselves with a teenager’s dance,’’ said legislator Parvaneh Salahshouri, according to news agency Isna.
At this critical stage, with the country facing sanctions from the United States and risking renewed international isolation, the country needed “relaxation, not even more tension,’’ she was quoted as saying.
“We demand from the rulers who make such decisions in this country to finally understand the difference between their generation and the present one,’’ said Salahschouri.
Social services such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are considered a problem for the Islamic establishment in Iran, and the judiciary has demanded that all social networks be blocked.
However, virtually all Iranians can access prohibited sites and networks through VPN technology.
In 2014, six young Iranians who posted a video of themselves dancing to Pharrell Williams’ hit song Happy on the streets and rooftops of Tehran were given suspended sentences of up to one year in prison and 91 lashes.