Acclaimed Iranian actress Taraneh Alidoosti has been released from prison.

Alidoosti’s mother, Nadereh Hakim Elahi, announced the news via an Instagram story posted Wednesday morning. The actor’s attorney, Zahra Minooei, also shared the news on Twitter. In the post, Minooei said: “Today, my client Ms. Taraneh Alidoosti will be released from Evin Prison after posting bail.”

Alidoosti, one of the nation’s most prominent actresses and star of the 2022 Cannes Competition Title Leila’s Brothers, was arrested on 17 December 2022 and detained after expressing solidarity with anti-government demonstrators on Instagram where she posed without a headscarf.

The actress has been daringly vocal in her support of freedom protests sparked by the death in police custody of 22-year-old Kurdish-Iranian woman Mahsa Amini in September.  

Iranian government-backed media said Alidoosti had been arrested for “failing to provide proof for some of her statements”.

There has been widespread condemnation of Alidoosti’s arrest.

Oscar-winning director Asghar Farhadi, who directed Alidoosti in The Salesman, called for her release on Instagram while the Cannes Film Festival also expressed its support for the actress on its social media accounts. Over 600 artists around the world have signed a petition urging Iranian authorities to release Alidoosti.

Alidoosti is among a growing number of Iranian artists who have been detained by the authorities, firstly in a crackdown on freedom of speech and now the protests.

Other detained figures from Iran’s art and entertainment world include filmmakers Jafar Panahi, Mohammad Rasoulof and Mostafa Al-Ahmad, singer Singer Shervin Kapour and Kurdish Tehran-based rapper Saman Yasin.

More to follow.


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