Mohammadbagher Ghalibaf

The mayor of Tehran has defended his move to segregate male and female workers in city offices, saying: “We have religious honour and will not permit women to socialize and have contact with men other than their husbands.”

Mohammadbagher Ghalibaf said he was standing firm on his decision to separate the offices for men and women and he dismissed “foreign media” and their negative portrayal of these developments.

Ghalibof’s new measure has stirred serious outrage on social media. The move appears to be a reaction to President’s Rohani’s call for a more moderate stance on social matters.

In May, Tehran city deputies established a regulation preventing the employment of women as office managers, secretaries and typists.

President Rohani’s advisor on Women’s Affairs steered away from taking a position on the matter, telling ISNA that the city has to remain accountable for its decision. She added that they are meeting with City Council to discuss the new regulation.