Iranian Actress Could Face Public Flogging Over Kiss

Iranian Actress Could Face Public Flogging

Iranian actress Leila Hatami, star of Oscar-winning film “A Separation,” is causing a stir in her home country after publicly kissing Cannes president Gilles Jacob.

Unrelated men and women, according to Iran’s strict Islamic regime, are not allowed to touch or kiss in public.

The kiss, a simple peck on the cheek, took place at the world premiere of “Grace of Monaco” last Wednesday, May 14. It was also the opening night of the Cannes Film Festival in France.

Hizbullah Students, a group of university students linked to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, have since filed a complaint over the incident.

She must be flogged for “kissing a strange man,” they said in the petition.

The petition adds, “We, the undersigned, who are a group of student Muslim brothers and sisters, ask the cultural and media branch of the judiciary to prosecute Leila Hatami for her sinful act of kissing a strange man in public, which according to article 638 of Islamic Criminal Justice carries a prison sentence.”

Adding, “Furthermore, the action of this film star has hurt the religious sentiments of the proud and martyrs breeding nation of Iran and as such we also demand the punishment of flogging for her as stipulated in the law.”

Hatami is the daughter of popular Iranian director Ali Hatami and is married with two children.

Her reps could not be reached for comment on this story.

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  1. mini me says:

    Theya re just a bunch o retard ppl…

  2. Terry Keck says:

    No! They are barbarians.

  3. bernynhel says:

    Which is why she should never have returned to Iran after the fact and never looked back

  4. David says:

    Which is why separation of church and state was such an incredibly wise decision on the part of our Founders.

  5. John Freimann says:

    Sadly, it’s stuff like this that makes you think “Freedom of Religion”, phooey!!!

  6. If what you profess to believe creates, incites or results in violence I think it’s time to THINK for yourself and ditch the ” religion “… Why God even allows such stupidity to continue in this world baffles me. Life is so short, we should be spending so much time loving and helping one another that there is no time for hate and senseless violence…you know the greatest commandment? …..If you do you’ll get this…if you don’t? Well it’s time to live it.

    • bernynhel says:

      That’s just it: God has nothing to do with it but it is people using the idea of “God” to exert their will and control over other people and is exactly why god was invented in the first place and why it is so powerful and why so many are willing to die to preserve the myth of god. As soon as enough of us can grow up and reject all concepts of god then wars, genocide, and despotism will be deprived of the vast majority of their justifications.

  7. zahra says:

    i am an Iranian girl who aware about this event more than anyone else in other country.i want to inform you as my friends about it directly. this letter that written by these so called sisters is something like a body in Iran take it seriously because they are prejudice people who even the government dos not support them and no rule in Iran is in favor of them. but unfortunately government afraid of them and because of it try to control them.non of us as Iranian people accept their ideas and their strange believes are not related to Islam at all .Hatami is daughter of Ali Hatami(director) and her husband is Ali Mosafa. she won a lot of prizes in her country and also she is so popular and favorite among the people and even governments.there is nothing important to make you worry and it is just the journalists game…

  8. Laura says:

    I seriously doubt that any ‘sisters’ are willingly involved in this ridiculous attempt to stir up controversy.
    Ignorant, backward fools with their pathetic need to control women are utterly contemptible.

  9. Charles J. Wesoky says:

    I have a better Idea for those Islamic Students….Flog them into the 21st Century!

  10. waynevia says:

    I don’t think she should be flogged for what she did, I think it is wrong people acting like that I don’t care what the law over there says I think they need to do away with there laws in this day and age. Laws should be changed.

  11. Michelle says:

    What a scary backwards society. She should just make another country her home.

  12. Lesmond says:

    I have heard many times that Islam is a peaceful religion. There must be a new non violent type of flogging. Remember this public outpouring the next time there is a public outpouring on behalf of peace.

    • Ringo says:

      Almond Joy! We meet again after 14 years! This is so weird, I didn’t know you read Variety. Anyway, it’s hard to tell if that “group of students” has any pull in Iran. It could be that they’re just some fringe group a la Westboro Baptist Church. Hopefully that will be the case and she can safely return home. Although I can’t see a reason for her to want to go back there.

  13. PETER says:

    Thanks, Mari, that was good, well said.

  14. Mari says:

    Please open your mind before making broad generalizations about Muslims. My father is an Baghdad-born Shia Muslim. He strongly supports women’s rights and gay rights. He invites Christian and Jewish friends over to his house to celebrate their respective holidays, and he understands – as most modernized Muslims do — that many passages of the Koran were a product of their time and that MUCH of the extremism we see today has nothing to do with the Koran and everything to do with the Salafi extremist “reinterpretations” of the book that our Saudi and Qatari “allies” support. His entire side of the family are progressive liberals who believe in equal rights and don’t believe women should cover their heads — that’s a cultural practice as archaic as the rules of the Old Testament that forbid mixing fabrics, etc. Most of the Shia Muslim women in his family hold PhDs. and NONE of them are covered. My hope is that the entire Muslim world can be as open as my father is–all religion are only worthwhile if they help us become more loving, compassionate, big-hearted people. Otherwise, what’s the point?

    • Iceton says:

      You don’t need any religion to become more loving, compassionate, big-hearted people. That should come from our observation and long-standing experience that society functions better when people are nice to one another. Devoutly religious people are less likely to be loving and compassionate, because when you believe in absurdities you can justify any atrocity if done in the name of God.

    • gymviking says:

      It’s not our minds that want to flog the lady publicly. It’s the Muslim religious-govern organization in charge that is getting the petition from practicing Muslims who claim they are shamed by the actresses actions.

      Truth be told, they probably wouldn’t be too thrilled with your father either.

      • Guest says:

        You’re preaching to the choir, Mari. We’re not the ones flying into buildings, bombing malls, kidnapping girls, flogging cheek-peckers, stoning ‘adulterers’, cutting off girls’ genitalia. All in the name of ‘allah’, who must be pretty nasty to want all that to happen.

        Go out and update/reform islam in those backward countries. Oh wait, you’d be KILLED for blasphemy or apostasy!

        Face it: wherever islam rules, misogyny, homophobia (as in DEADLY, not just a mild dislike) and violent punishments are practised. It’s time to reform or leave.

      • Michelle says:


  15. Sam says:

    Oh good. The world is still a horrific place…

  16. PETER says:

    And not all Iranians, Persians believe nor support the backward Islamic stupidity.

  17. kalster65 says:

    Iranians are Persian, and not part of the “Arab nation”.

  18. Austin says:

    Paraphrasing… “he who is without sin, be the first to throw a stone.” -Jesus Christ

  19. Ian says:

    Not misleading at all. They stated the truth.

  20. Joyce Tyler says:

    What the article correctly states, Katie, is that, according to the law in Iran, Hatami COULD face a public flogging, and that there is now a petition by students associated with the government’s revolutionary guard, who do the bidding of the “Supreme Leader,” that said flogging should take place.

    • Katie says:

      Is that true? Could Iran prosecute someone for their actions in France? Where are you getting your information about personal jurisdiction under Iranian law, Joyce? Also, the article references no specific law allowing Iran to prosecute citizens for their conduct while they are physically present in other countries.

      Nope, this article is just shaming another religion and culture. If this woman could only be hypothetically prosecuted if her conduct had taken place in Iran, is this news? I hypothetically could be prosecuted for any crime, if I actually committed it.

      Variety: Please strike this offensive article.

      Thank you.

      • Joyce Tyler says:

        Katie, I was referencing article 635 of Islamic Penal Code mentioned by the “Student Sisters of Hezbollah” in their petition against Leila. If you say that these girls do not understand Islamic law, I’m glad to hear it.

        I should add that it’s not just Iran’s attitudes in particular that I find distasteful. I’m one of those Americans who still believes in separation of church and state. If fundamentalist Christian views became the law of the land, I’d be out of here like a shot.

  21. Brian says:

    Rabid, froth spewing extremist socipaths = fundamentalist islamists. ANything they say should be ignored due to the level of ignorance contained therein.

  22. Reblogged this on Big Blue Dot Y'all and commented:
    No words.

  23. stevenkovacs says:

    Ben Affleck to star and direct the film version. #NoCannesDo

  24. Joyce Tyler says:

    If her husband is affronted by her participating in a harmless French custom, he should be the one discussing it with her, not the Iranian government and especially not a bunch of students.

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