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Video: Women in Iran defy fatwa forbidding them from cycling

"It's our absolute right and we're not going to give up" say mother and daughter who filmed themselves riding...

Women in Iran have reacted to a fatwa issued by the country’s supreme leader that forbids them from cycling by posting videos and photographs to social media that show them riding bikes.

Among the first to do so after the new religious law was pronounced by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei were a mother and daughter from capital city Teheran.

They heard about it while holidaying on the Kish Island resort in the Persian Gulf.

So what did they do? The pair hired bikes, and filmed themselves riding them, of course.

“Bicycle riding is part of our lives,” said the daughter, adding that cycling “is our absolute right and we’re not going to give it up.”

Their video was shared on the Facebook page of the women’s rights group My Stealthy Freedom, with other women also posting their own photos and videos.

In July a group of women taking part in a cycling event in northern Iran were arrested for riding bicycles, with some made to sign a pledge saying they would not do so again.

> Woman arrested in Iran - for riding bikes

Human rights campaigners accused the country’s regime of misogyny and said it was an infringement of women’s hard-won rights.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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