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Jafar Panahi, Jailed Iran filmmaker on hunger strike

Jafar Panahi, a renowned Iranian filmmaker imprisoned for the past 6 months, has announced a hunger strike to protest his ongoing detention, as reported by his wife Tahereh Saeidi on her Instagram page.

Sabrangindia 03 Feb 2023

Jafar Panahi, Jailed Iran filmmaker on hunger strikeImage: AP

Tahereh Saeidi reported the hunger strike on her Instagram page. Jafar Panahi, a former Golden Bear winner and director of socially-conscious films, was arrested along with other Iranian filmmakers on July 20th of last year for protesting the arrest of two colleagues. Despite being a recipient of several awards, including a Golden Lion for "The Circle" at the Venice Film Festival and a Golden Bear for "Taxi Tehran" at the Berlin Film Festival, Panahi found himself in Evin prison after a judge resentenced him. He began his dry hunger strike, refusing both food and water, on Wednesday as stated in the statement.

"Today, I am compelled to protest against the inhumane treatment of the judicial and security forces in Iran through my most valuable possession - my life," stated Panahi. He added that the protest is against the illegal and oppressive behavior of the authorities, who have taken hostages.

"I have started a hunger strike since the morning of the 12th of Bahman, and I will refuse to eat and drink any food and medicine until the time of my release. I will remain in this
state until perhaps my lifeless body is freed from prison," the renowneddirector said in the statement. "With love for Iran and the people of my land," Jafar Panahi signed off.

Last month, there were expectations that the judiciary would order Panahi's release, but he is still detained in Evin prison in Tehran. Panahi, 62, was arrested on July 11th and was serving a 6-year sentence imposed in 2010 for "propaganda against the system," according to AFP. However, on October 15th, the Supreme Court overturned the conviction and ordered a retrial, giving his legal team reason to hope for his release.

Panahi's arrest in July occurred when he appeared in court for fellow filmmaker Mohammad Rasoulof, who had been arrested a few days prior. Rasoulof was freed from prison on January 7th on a two-week medical leave and is reportedly still outside of jail.

Cinema producers and directors are among the thousands of people arrested by Iran in its crackdown on the protests sparked by the September 16, 2022 death in custody of Mahsa Amini, 22, who had been arrested for allegedly violating its strict dress code for women. Another popular actor Taraneh Alidoosti, who had published images of herself without wearing the Islamic headscarf, was among those detained although she was released in early January after being held for almost three weeks.

(Reports on the basic of those in New Indian Express inputs from AFP)

Jafar Panahi, Jailed Iran filmmaker on hunger strike

Jafar Panahi, a renowned Iranian filmmaker imprisoned for the past 6 months, has announced a hunger strike to protest his ongoing detention, as reported by his wife Tahereh Saeidi on her Instagram page.

Jafar Panahi, Jailed Iran filmmaker on hunger strikeImage: AP

Tahereh Saeidi reported the hunger strike on her Instagram page. Jafar Panahi, a former Golden Bear winner and director of socially-conscious films, was arrested along with other Iranian filmmakers on July 20th of last year for protesting the arrest of two colleagues. Despite being a recipient of several awards, including a Golden Lion for "The Circle" at the Venice Film Festival and a Golden Bear for "Taxi Tehran" at the Berlin Film Festival, Panahi found himself in Evin prison after a judge resentenced him. He began his dry hunger strike, refusing both food and water, on Wednesday as stated in the statement.

"Today, I am compelled to protest against the inhumane treatment of the judicial and security forces in Iran through my most valuable possession - my life," stated Panahi. He added that the protest is against the illegal and oppressive behavior of the authorities, who have taken hostages.

"I have started a hunger strike since the morning of the 12th of Bahman, and I will refuse to eat and drink any food and medicine until the time of my release. I will remain in this
state until perhaps my lifeless body is freed from prison," the renowneddirector said in the statement. "With love for Iran and the people of my land," Jafar Panahi signed off.

Last month, there were expectations that the judiciary would order Panahi's release, but he is still detained in Evin prison in Tehran. Panahi, 62, was arrested on July 11th and was serving a 6-year sentence imposed in 2010 for "propaganda against the system," according to AFP. However, on October 15th, the Supreme Court overturned the conviction and ordered a retrial, giving his legal team reason to hope for his release.

Panahi's arrest in July occurred when he appeared in court for fellow filmmaker Mohammad Rasoulof, who had been arrested a few days prior. Rasoulof was freed from prison on January 7th on a two-week medical leave and is reportedly still outside of jail.

Cinema producers and directors are among the thousands of people arrested by Iran in its crackdown on the protests sparked by the September 16, 2022 death in custody of Mahsa Amini, 22, who had been arrested for allegedly violating its strict dress code for women. Another popular actor Taraneh Alidoosti, who had published images of herself without wearing the Islamic headscarf, was among those detained although she was released in early January after being held for almost three weeks.

(Reports on the basic of those in New Indian Express inputs from AFP)

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