Actor Nazanin Boniadi asks world to back Iran women protests

Streaming HUBMarch 8, 2023

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Actor Nazanin Boniadi urged the world Wednesday to support protests for women’s rights and political change in her native Iran, saying the autocrat was “an independent and politically active woman.” Fear nothing more than women.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Forbes 30/50 summit in Abu Dhabi, Boniadi told The Associated Press that she hopes people accuse Taliban-controlled Afghanistan and Iran of “gender apartheid” with policies that target women. Will sign a petition.

“This system of oppressing women, of dehumanizing women, is based on reinforcing and perpetuating these established systems of power,” she said.

Boniadi, who left Tehran with his family for England as a young child after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, used his fame as an actor in the series “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” on Amazon Prime Did and played starring roles in the feature. Films to highlight what is happening in Iran.

Since September, Iran has faced massive protests following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died after being detained by the country’s morality police. Since that time, activists say more than 500 people have been killed and more than 19,000 others detained in security force crackdowns.

“What is unprecedented is that we are seeing 12-year-old girls, schoolgirls, on the streets saying, ‘We don’t want an Islamic republic,'” Boniadi said. “The courage it takes is amazing. And that courage has been contagious.

However, recent months have seen suspected poisonings in the country’s girls’ schools. While details are difficult to trace, human rights activist groups in Iran say there have been at least 290 suspected school poisonings in recent months, with at least 7,060 students claiming to be affected.

It is not clear which chemical may have been used, if any. No one has claimed the attacks and authorities have not identified any suspects. Unlike neighboring Afghanistan, Iran has no recent history of religious extremists targeting girls’ education. However, some activists worry that extremists may poison the girls to keep them out of school.

“What binds us together is that (as with dictators and autocrats), there is nothing they fear more than an independent and politically active woman. And that’s why there’s action in Iran today… as you’re seeing in the chemical attack on schoolgirls.”

She said: “We have to come together. We have to unite. We have to find a way forward and end these atrocities against women.”

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Follow Malak Harb on Twitter at www.twitter.com/malakharb.

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