The leading lady in a new film about the state of prostitution in Morocco was brutally attacked, after critics slammed the film and claimed their anger would be used towards physical violence.
Loubna Abida – who plays the role of sex worker Noha in Much Loved – claimed that even police and hospital workers refused to come to her aide after being savagely beaten, and disgustingly mocked her instead.
The film – which is directed by French-Moroccan filmmaker Nabil Ayouch – was premiered at the iconic Cannes Film Festival earlier this year and is considered one of the first to tackle the serious issue of prostitution in Morocco.
The production tells the story of four female sex workers in Marrakech, how they are exploited by pimps and even depicts corruption within the police force, who at times profit from the illegal trade.
Much Love was banned by their government back in May, but supporters of the film claim that the controversy is centred around the publication of the first official stats on the nations sex industry.
Ms Abidar posted several images on to Facebook after the attack, with her head wrapped in a bandage and several bruises on her back.
Since the attack, the Moroccan film star has received support from a Moroccan women and gay rights group- Alternative Movement for Individual Liberties.
Co-founder Ibtissame Lachgar told The Independent:
These are taboos we need to break. We can’t stop fighting. We are not supported entirely by the civil society entirely. There is no Eastern rights and Western rights. There are human rights. I fail to understand anyone who argues otherwise.
Immediately after the attack, the actress spoke of her intentions to seek political asylum to France over fears for her safety.