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Take off hijabs in support of Iran protests, says French actress

Isabelle Adjani says Muslim women around the world should act in solidarity with those being ‘massacred’ for doing the same, in a statement criticised on social media

French actress Isabelle Adjani has said that women across the world should take off their hijabs in solidarity with those who are being ‘massacred’ for doing the same in Iran Pic: Andrea Raffin / Shutterstock

French actress Isabelle Adjani has called on Muslim women who wear a hijab or other head covering to take it off in solidarity with “those who are being massacred for doing the same”. 

Ms Adjani, whose father was Algerian and mother German, was one of several French actresses – including Juliette Binoche and Marion Cotillard – who filmed themselves cutting off some of their hair last month in protest against the death of Mahsa Amini on September 16. 

Ms Amini was a 22-year-old Iranian woman who was arrested by the religious morality police for not wearing her hijab in accordance with government standards and later died in hospital under suspicious circumstances. The authorities stated that Ms Amini had a heart attack, but eyewitnesses claimed that she had been severely beaten.

Anti-regime protests are continuing in Iran, and when speaking on Franceinfo radio this morning (November 7), Ms Adjani said: “The fight of Iranian women makes me want to tell women across the world who wear a hijab to take it off, in solidarity with those who are being killed, massacred, for doing the same.” 

She also said that cutting some of her own hair was meant “simply to send to Iranian women a message which could bring them a little strength in a fight which goes beyond what we understand by bravery.” 

Ms Adjani added that “the world is doing badly,” as “there have never been so many psychologically disturbed people in power in so many countries”.

Ms Adjani’s comment has elicited hundreds of critical responses on social media, with one woman tweeting: “I am a woman. I refuse to be made to wear a headscarf and equally refuse to be made to take that headscarf off if tomorrow I decide to wear it. 

“My freedom is in being able to choose and not that a man or Isabelle forces me!” 

Another Twitter user stated: “I call on women to wear what they like, as they like, in solidarity with those who are being massacred for the same reasons.” 

On Sunday (November 6), demonstrations took place in Iranian universities and Kurdish regions in the north-east of the country. 

According to the latest information from the UN, at least 250 people have been killed by security forces during or as a result of these demonstrations. 

Ms Adjani is the only actor in history to have won five César Awards for acting. She was made Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in 2010, and a Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters in 2014. 

Related articles 

Videos and images: People in France march in Iran solidarity

Hijabi women’s football game protest banned by Paris police

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