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Iran Police Target Rappers in Arrest Sweep

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Law enforcement in Iran is up to some not so tolerant things. Over the weekend, CNN reported that the Tehran police force performed a sweep to arrest several members of underground Iranian rap groups for using vacant homes to record and videotape their songs, which are apparently illegal in the country.

“These groups use the most trashy, juvenile and street-like words and phrases that have no place in proper grammar,” a local police chief, Hussain Sajedinia, said to the country’s ILNA news organization. “More importantly, they have no regard for the law, principles, proper behavior and language.”

In Iran, musicians participating in both rap and rock n’ roll music are not necessarily committing serious crimes that come with prison sentences, but authorities find the music “un-Islamic.” When one is found to be a rapper, it often comes with accusations of Satan worship and can be grounds for a night in jail.

“Those who have been arrested are among those who have veered away from proper behavior, who have distanced themselves from all of life’s hardships and are in search of comforts that have no limits,” the chief concluded.

It’s unclear if the arrested artists are still in custody or what specific charges they have faced. Reports were also vague as to how many rappers were arrested and their ages.

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