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Iranian women allowed to work in fire service

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Teheran (dpa) - For the first time since the 1979 Islamic revolution, women in Iran will be allowed to work in the fire service, the news agency Fars reported Saturday.

Following the final approval by the Teheran municipality, women above the age of 23 and with a high school diploma are entitled to apply for the new job after passing the necessary education programme.

The manager of the Teheran fire department, Ahmad Ziaei, told Fars that the women could especially be used in incidents in which only females are present, giving a women-only indoor pool as an example.

Except for physicians, men in Iran cannot touch women they don't know, making the work of police and fire departments extremely difficult in urgent situations.

Women in Iran, who have to wear a long gown and a scarf to hide their body contours and hair in public, are also now allowed to work in the police department.

Copyright 2005 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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