Members of the Iranian parliament have gone under fire for rushing to take what has since been dubbed "selfies of humiliation" with a top female European Union diplomat.
Photos circulating on social media show the EU's top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, bombarded by a group of male MPs - some of whom are religious figures - trying to capture photos of her.
The incident has provoked a wave of outrage and ridicule on social media, with many users criticizing the MPs for their "humiliating" behavior, accusing them of acting "like they have not seen a woman before".
Mogherini, an Italian politician who currently serves as the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, was in Iran over the weekend for recently-reelected President Hassan Rouhani's inauguration, the BBC reported.
Despite being among several foreign diplomats visiting the country for the inauguration, Mogherini seemed to capture most of the attention.
Iranian MPs reportedly bombarded Mogherini trying to snap photos with her.
In the images making the rounds online, male Iranian politicians can be seen perched on their desks with their smartphones in hand, ahead of the Italian diplomat.
The incident has even drawn criticism from Iranian politicians, with MP Alireza Salimi describing the behavior as "self-surrender to the West" while suggesting a disciplinary committee to take action, according to the BBC.
"This is a cultural rather than a political problem," said Hesam Ashena, the president's cultural adviser. "Every one of those esteemed MPs in that selfie should be interviewed seriously."
In response to the backlash, one of the MPs in the controversial photos, Ahmad Mazani, took to Twitter to justify the rush to surround Mogherini after the ceremony. He said that lawmakers had been banned "from interacting with special guests" during the event.
Under a hashtag that translates to "selfies of humiliation," social media users criticized and ridiculed the Iranian politicians for what many deemed as humiliating behavior:
Does this scene look familiar?
The first tweet compared the incident to a scene from the film Malena, in which men rush to light actress Monica Belluci's cigarette. Meanwhile, the second tweet draws parallels with a scene from Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.
Never seen a woman before?
"Foreign Minister of the EU, Mogherini, in the Iranian parliament - looks like they have not seen a woman before."
One user compared the politicians to street harassers
"Thank you for disgracing 80 million people"
"Dear MPs, thank you for disgracing 80 million people," one Twitter user wrote, according to the Saudi Gazette.
Some thought she was being treated as an 'imam'
"They might as well have let her lead the [Islamic] prayer."