An Iranian couple, social media influencers, have been jailed for a long time after a video emerged of them dancing in a large square in the capital, Tehran.
In a video shared on social media, Astiyazh Haghighi, 21, was seen dancing with her fiancé Amir Mohammad Ahmadi, 22, without a head covering in Azadi Square. The couple posted the video themselves.
Each was charged with “spreading corruption and immorality,” and “collusion and collusion with the intention of undermining national security,” receiving 11-and-a-half-year sentences, according to the activist group Human Rights Watch. According to Activists News Agency (HRANA).
However, Mizan, a news agency linked to Iran’s judiciary, said each was sentenced to 5 years in prison on charges of “collusion and conspiracy with the intention of undermining national security.”
The two are accused of encouraging people to gather and calling them to riot in an Instagram post made on October 26, Mizan Online added.
Judge Abolqasem Salavati presided over their trial and completed the sentences, including a ban on posting videos on social media for two years and a ban on leaving the country for two years, according to HRANA.
Security forces first raided the couple’s home in the early hours of October 30, a source told CNN, and took them in for questioning before taking them to jail.
Haghighi was initially sent to Evin Ward 209 Prison but was transferred to Qarchak Women’s Prison where she is currently being held, HRANA reports. He added, Haghi and his partner are being denied access to a lawyer.
Haghighi and Ahmadi each have nearly a million followers on Instagram and have separate YouTube channels with a total of over half a million followers.
This comes after the country sparked protests across the country over the death of Mahsa Amini, a young woman accused of violating the country’s hijab law. Iran has killed protesters, who have been accused of killing security forces, which critics say is due to a hasty trial.
Critics have compared their streak to that of Sajjad Heydari, the Iranian man who beheaded his wife last year. Heydari, who killed his 17-year-old wife in February 2022, was jailed for just eight years and two months, according to the country’s Khabar Online website.