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The Interview

Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi 'disappointed' by outcome of Iran's Islamic Revolution

FRANCE 24 sat down with Shirin Ebadi, an exiled Iranian human rights activist who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003. On the fortieth anniversary of Iran's Islamic Revolution, Ebadi expressed her "disappointment" in the Islamic Republic, particularly in regard to women's rights. She explained that she supported the Revolution at first, but quickly moved away from it when Ayatollah Khomenei declared that women working in the administration had to wear the veil.

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"At the time, Khomenei’s slogans and [those of] the other revolutionaries were independence and liberty. Actually, they promised that in the Islamic Republic we would reach those goals. And now, 40 years later, I’m disappointed that we did not obtain the liberty we wanted and nor did we get independence," Shirin Ebadi told FRANCE 24's Catalina Gomez Angel.

"In 1979, more than 90% of Iranian people were in favour of the Islamic Revolution," the Nobel laureate explained. "But today, if you were to organise a new referendum, a free referendum with international monitoring, it’s quite clear that you would only obtain 10% at most who would vote in favour of the Islamic Revolution," she added.

"The Iranian government doesn’t respect women and in particular is not favourable to women's rights. There’s a system of segregation within the Islamic Republic," Ebadi told FRANCE 24.

"Women are always considered as being against the regime and the enemy," she concluded.

Programme produced by Narimène Laouadi.

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