NEWS Taraneh Alidoosti: Iranian actress arrested for criticizing execution of protesters

Taraneh Alidoosti: Iranian actress arrested for criticizing execution of protesters


One of Iran’s most famous actresses was arrested days after criticizing the execution of a man involved in the nationwide protests that have gripped the country since September.

Taraneh Alidoosti, who starred in 2016’s Oscar-winning film “The Salesman,” condemned the hanging of Mohsen Shekari, the first known case linked to protests this month Event-related executions. Shekari was reportedly convicted of “waging war on God” for stabbing a member of Baski’s military unit during a protest in Tehran on September 23.

Fars News Agency, the state media agency affiliated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, said Alidoosti was arrested because of “the lack of evidence for her claims”.

Alidoosti, known as a feminist activist, posted a photo on Instagram last month of herself without the hijab and holding a sign reading “Women, Life, Freedom” in support of the protest movement.

After Shekhari was executed, she said in another post: “Your silence means supporting tyranny and tyrants,” adding, “Every international organization is watching this bloodshed without action, This is a disgrace to humanity.”

Her Instagram account has been deleted.

A second execution took place on 12 December, a few days after Shekari was hanged. Majidreza Rahnavard was hanged in the northeastern city of Mashhad after being accused of killing two paramilitaries.

“Some celebrities were arrested for making claims and posting provocations without evidence,” AFP said in its report on Alidoosti.

The Committee to Combat Violence against Women in Iranian Films, a local rights group, said on Twitter that it was unclear which government agency had detained Ali Dusti.

Alidoosti has appeared on various popular Iranian television shows and is known for her activism in the #MeToo movement in the Iranian film industry.

Last month, she denied reports that she had left Iran, writing that she planned to stay in the country and stop working.

“I will stand with the families of prisoners and victims and bring justice to them. I will fight for my home and I will defend my rights at all costs,” she wrote.

The death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after being arrested by the state’s morality police for allegedly not wearing the hijab properly sparked nationwide protests and the death penalty for several Iranians.

Her death has touched a nerve in the Islamic Republic, with prominent public figures coming out in support of the movement. Since then, the protests have revolved around a range of grievances against the authoritarian regime.

As of November, Iranian authorities were seeking the death penalty for at least 21 people linked to the protests, according to Amnesty International.

At least 458 people have been killed in the unrest since September, the Norway-based Iranian human rights group said on Wednesday.

CNN could not independently verify the number of people facing executions in Iran, or the latest number of arrests or deaths related to the protests, because no one outside the Iranian government can confirm the exact number.

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