An Iranian actress has caused outrage in her home country after posting photos of herself without a hijab on social media.
Sadaf Taherian posted photos on Facebook and Instagram without the compulsory Islamic headdress, in protest against strict laws that mean women have to wear them in public, the Daily Mail reports.
This got a furious reaction from Iran’s ministry of culture, who called the actress ‘immoral’ on state TV.
According to reports the government has now banned her from acting, and – bizarrely – have even photoshopped a hijab onto her photos.
Talking to Tablet, a TV programme on the Voice of America Persian language channel, Taherian said she’s faced abuse from the public online. She said:
I was nervous and worried about how people would react to my photos.
I did not expect this from the people of Iran, from my own culture – to hear so many insults.
I can only feel sorry for their reaction and I have nothing else to say. I want to live in a place and live the way that makes me happy.
Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani has previously spoken out about the strict laws that have been in place since 1979, defending women who don’t comply by saying: “many women in our society who do not respect our hijab laws are virtuous”.
But conservative men and women have previously campaigned in Tehran for the law to be strictly adhered to.