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Visit to Iran by US porn star angers exiles

By AFP

February 5, 2024 09:26 PM


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An American porn actor on Monday faced accusations of promoting propaganda for Iran's government after boasting on social media about a trip to the Islamic republic from where she posted pictures at sites including the shut-down US embassy.

The Iranian authorities have denied being behind the visit by Whitney Wright, saying she was issued a visa like any other foreign citizen and they had not been aware of her "obscene" profession.

The posts by Wright, who is known for her vehement criticism of Iran's arch-enemy Israel, have particularly angered Iranian exiles as she showed herself carefully observing the strict Islamic dress code for women in the wake of the 2022 nationwide protests against the obligatory hijab.

Those protests erupted after the September 2022 police custody death of Mahsa Amini who was arrested for allegedly flouting the dress rules.

"American porn star Whitney Wright is in Iran, my birth country, where women are killed for simply showing their hair and being true to themselves," prominent US-based Iranian dissident Masih Alinejad wrote on X, saying Wright had been "completely covered up" in the images.

"Iranian women don't want to obey a discriminatory law," she added.

At the US embassy, closed following the severing of US-Iranian diplomatic relations in the wake of the 1979-1981 hostage-taking of staff by Islamic radicals, Wright posed next to a flagpole with a torn US flag on the ground.

She was dressed in a long enveloping headscarf, trouser suit and long coat well in line with the dress code and a far cry from the usual skimpy garb enjoyed by her one million followers on Instagram.

"Whitney Wright, an American porn star was invited to Tehran to promote the Islamic republic," a France-based association for Iranian women Association Femme Azadi wrote on X. "They stop at nothing."

In Tehran, foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani denied any knowledge of her trip, but noted that despite the political tensions "it is not forbidden" for Americans to visit Iran.

A source told the Tasnim news agency that she was not invited by any organisation in Iran and the visa system "was not aware of the nature of her immoral and obscene occupation."

Wright hit back at the criticism of her images from her trip -- which now appear to have been removed -- by asking: "Posting photos of my Iran trip now means I'm pushing Iran propaganda?"

"Just sharing what I saw on the inside and outside."

The Iranian reports made clear she had already left Iran but it was not clear how long she stayed. She appears to have been on a tour through the region, also posting images from Egypt, Lebanon and Morocco.

This not the first time a porn star has raised eyebrows with a visit to Iran: in 2016 British adult entertainment actor Candy Charms visited the country for cosmetic surgery on her nose.


AFP


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