Famous Iranian actress Taraneh Alidoosti poses without headscarf

    Taraneh Alidoosti

    A top Iranian actress has posted an image of herself on Instagram without a headscarf to signal solidarity with anti-government demonstrations.

    Taraneh Alidoosti, best known for her role in the Oscar-winning film The Salesman – also held a sign reading “Woman, Life, Freedom” in Kurdish.

    The slogan has become a common rallying cry among protesters.

    Demonstrations sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody are entering their seventh week.

    The 22-year-old died after she was arrested by morality police in Tehran for allegedly violating Iran’s strict rules requiring women to cover their hair with a hijab, or Islamic headscarf.

    Ms Alidoosti is one of Iran’s most successful actresses and has more than eight million followers on Instagram. She starred in The Salesman, which won an Academy Award in 2016 for the Best International Feature Film.

    She has previously vowed to remain inside Iran at any price and has paused her career to support the families of those killed in the security forces’ clampdown on demonstrators.

    Local human rights activists say least 328 people have been killed and 14,800 others have been detained.

    The star’s post is the latest gesture of support by leading figures in the arts and sports of Iran.

    Last month, Iranian star footballer Sardar Azmoun backed demonstrators amid increasing violence from the government. The Bayern Leverkusen forward condemned security forces in an Instagram story, saying: “Shame on you for easily killing the people and viva women of Iran. Long live Iranian women!”

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