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Interview of Iranian president with CNN journalist canceled after refusal to wear headscarf

After she refused his request to wear a headscarf, according to the reporter, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi canceled an interview with CNN journalist Christiane Amanpour.

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After she refused his request to wear a headscarf, according to the reporter, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi canceled an interview on Thursday with CNN journalist Christiane Amanpour.

Amanpour wrote on Twitter, “Protests are sweeping Iran & women are burning their hijabs after the death last week of Mahsa Amini, following her arrest by the ‘morality police’. Human rights groups say at least eight have been killed. Last night, I planned to ask President Raisi about all this and much more.”

Referring to the UN General Assembly, she added, “This was going to be President (Ebrahim) Raisi’s first ever interview on US soil, during his visit to NY for UNGA. After weeks of planning and eight hours of setting up translation equipment, lights and cameras, we were ready. But no sign of President Raisi.”

Amanpour was asked to wear a headscarf by a presidential aide 40 minutes after the interview had been scheduled “because it’s the holy months of Muharram and Safar.” Amanpour said she declined the request.

She stated, “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.”

The aide “made it clear that the interview would not happen if I did not wear a headscarf, Amanpour claimed. It is “a matter of respect” and referred to the situation in Iran, alluding to the protests sweeping the country, he said.

Saying she could not agree to “this unprecedented and unexpected condition,” the internationally-recognized journalist and her team then walked away.

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