No Headscarf: Iran President Cancels Christiane Amanpour’s Interview

United Nations: Famous television journalist Christiane Amanpour’s scheduled interview with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi didn’t materialise after he insisted she wear a headscarf.

Amanpour, chief international anchor of CNN who also has a show on US public broadcaster PBS, was ready for the interview on Wednesday on the sidelines of UN General Assembly when a President’s aide asked her to cover her head.

Amanpour refused to oblige.

“I politely declined. We are in New York, where there is no law or tradition regarding headscarves. I pointed out that no previous Iranian president has required this when I have interviewed them outside Iran. I said that I couldn’t agree to this unprecedented and unexpected condition,” Amanpour wrote on Twitter.

Amanpour, born in the UK to an Iranian father, posted a picture of herself sitting in front of an empty chair, where the President would have sat.

Raisi’s aide, a hardline cleric, told Amanpour that he was insisting on a headscarf because of “the situation in Iran,” she said.

Headscarves have been at the centre of massive protests in Iran for nearly a week since 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died after being arrested by morality police that enforce the clerics’ rules on how women dress in the cleric-run Islamic state.

Around 30 civilians have been reportedly killed so far in the crackdown on protests.

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