The head of Iran’s human rights council, Mohammad Javad Larijani, has criticized what he describes as “Western behavior”. Speaking to Tasnim news agency, Larijani said that dancing and displaying happiness in public was against Islamic values, and a clear example of the West “forcing its lifestyles on the world”.
Larijani said that there was an appropriate way to express happiness. “You don’t shout and scream when you are happy,” he said. “This is what donkeys and other animals do. Donkeys buck when they are very happy. Should we do the same?”
The head of the human rights council also took issue with the internet, saying that filtering was necessary to ensure people did not have access to inappropriate content. This, he said, was common sense: “It’s like having a door and windows in a house.”
Iran’s human rights council functions as part of the judiciary, so Larijani’s comments carry considerable weight. He also advises the judiciary on foreign relations.