A group of Iranians have reportedly been arrested after creating a tribute to Pharrell Williams' Happy video.
The group – consisting of three men and three unveiled women – dance to the number one hit in various Tehran locations.
“After a vulgar clip which hurt public chastity was released in cyberspace, police decided to identify those involved in making that clip,” Tehran police chief Hossein Sajedinia told the ISNA News Agency, according to ABC News.
“Following a series of intelligence and police operations and after coordinating with the judiciary, all the suspects were identified and arrested,” he said, adding they had “confessed to their criminal acts.”
Iranian state TV ran a programme on Tuesday, apparently showing the men and women confessing on TV , though their faces are not visible, the BBC reports.
The women now wear hijabs – which under Islamic law has been compulsory since the 1979 Revolution and the lack of it is punishable by fines, imprisonment or lashes.
The clip identifies them as actors and sees one telling the presenter: “They told us to come and give an audition. They said they will make us world famous.”
Another, with her back to the camera says: “They had promised us it won’t be broadcast.”
“They told me they are making a feature film and they had a permit for it. They said those things and they fooled me.”
A presenter addresses a policeman to ask: “Officer please give some advice to those who take advantage of our young people.”
He replies: “Here’s my advice to them. They should be absolutely certain that we were able to discover and identify these individuals in a very short time. We will certainly find out about who they are and confront them."
Since the arrests the original video has been taken down after clocking up around 40,000 views but protesters have uploaded copies with the hashtag #FreeHappyIranians.
Even singer Pharrell Williams tweeted his dismay: “It’s beyond sad these kids were arrested for trying to spread happiness.”
It's beyond sad these kids were arrested for trying to spread happiness http://t.co/XV1VAAJeYI— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) May 21, 2014