Christiane Amanpour’s interview with the Iranian president was canceled after he asked her to wear a scarf

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi did not show up for his first ever interview on US soil after CNN’s Christiane Amanpour “politely refused” his request to wear a headscarf, the reporter said on Twitter. wire Thursday.

“After weeks of planning and eight hours of installing translation equipment, lights and cameras, we were ready. But no sign of President Raisi,” Amanpour explained. “40 minutes after the interview began, an aide arrived. The president, he said, suggested that I wear a headscarf, because it is the holy months of Muharram and Safar.”

Although Amanpour has worn the veil for interviews in other countries in the past, such as Iran or Afghanistan, he noted that he would not wear one in a country where it is not required.

“We are in New York, where there is no law or tradition regarding scarves,” wrote the reporter. “I pointed out that no previous Iranian president requested this when I interviewed them outside of Iran.”

According to Amanpour, the aide who informed her of Raisi’s request “alluded to the rampant protests“Iran at the moment after a woman – who was detained by police for morality on charges of not covering her hair completely with hijab – died in police custody.

“And so we left,” Amanpour tweeted. “The interview did not take place. As protests continue in Iran and people are being killed, it would have been an important time to speak with President Raisi.”

Under Iranian law, women must respect a particular dress code, which is based on the country’s interpretation of the Sharia. This includes wearing a hijab to cover their hair and wearing baggy clothing to mask their figures, the BBC reports.

Last week, Mahsa Amini, 22, was visiting Tehran from Kurdistan when she was arrested by the moral police for not respecting the rule of the headgear. She died while she was in custody.

Police said Amini died from health conditions, saying she suffered a heart attack. Amini’s family denied that she had any health problems, criticisms and eyewitnesses claimed that the woman was beaten in a police van before going into a coma.

After the incident, protests erupted across Iran in response to Amini’s death. Many women are public fiery their hijab and cut their hair in solidarity with Amini. At least 17 were killed in the protests and internet access was cut off in different parts of the country.