Oscars: Iranian Foreign Minister Lauds 'Salesman' Cast and Crew for Foreign-Language Win, Anti-Trump Stance

Fabrizio Maltese
Asghar Farhadi

"Iranians have represented culture & civilization for millennia," tweets Javad Zarif.

Iran's foreign minister on Twitter lauded the best foreign-language film Oscar win for Iranian director Asghar Farhadi's The Salesman and the creative team's public stance about the Trump administration's travel ban.

"Proud of cast & crew of ‘The Salesman’ for Oscar & stance against #MuslimBan," Javad Zarif tweeted. "Iranians have represented culture & civilization for millennia."

Iran’s government-owned English-language network Press TV on its website covered the news of the Oscar win. Its news story used the headline “Asghar Farhadi Wins Another Oscar for Iran.” The filmmaker had also won the foreign-language Oscar in 2012 for A Separation.

Farhadi did not attend the ceremony, in a public protest against U.S. President Donald Trump’s travel ban affecting seven Muslim-majority countries, including Iran. A judge has suspended the administration's executive order.

Iranian-American engineer Anousheh Ansari on Sunday accepted the Oscar on behalf of Farhadi, reading from a statement by the director. "I'm sorry I'm not with you tonight," it said. "My absence is out of respect for the people of my country and those of other six nations who have been disrespected by the inhumane law that bans entry of immigrants to the U.S." 

Earlier on Sunday, Farhadi had told about 10,000 protesters in London that global opposition to Trump’s travel ban was key to empowering people to fight oppression everywhere. Speaking before the Academy Awards ceremony via a video link from Tehran to people attending a London protest gathering, which included a public screening of The Salesman in Trafalgar Square, Farhadi said that solidarity in the face of the ban across different parts of the world "has developed into a powerful and unified movement."

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