There is a stark contrast between the level of Iranian women’s social and political engagement and what the conservative regime prescribes. The gap between the reality of women’s participation in public life and their restricted legal status has emboldened women’s groups to campaign for legal reforms. But the Iranian regime has adopted an uncompromising position in relation to such demands. This is seen as an existential matter for the state. As a result, the Islamic regime has adopted a highly intolerant and repressive approach to women’s groups. This is most evident in relation to secular-oriented feminists, such as the Nobel Prize Laureate Shirin Ebadi, driving a wedge between the latter and the more religiously-oriented feminists.