Iranian artists withdraw from festivals in sympathy for Ukrainian plane victims 

January 12, 2020 - 18:45

TEHRAN – A number of Iranian artists have withdrawn from the Fajr festivals to express their sympathy with the families of those people killed following the unintentional downing a Ukrainian plane by Iran last week. 

Ebrahim Haqiqi, the secretary of the 12th edition of the Fajr Festival of Visual Arts, and the jury members and organizers of the festival have all resigned. 

The festival is scheduled to be held at the Tehran Permanent International Fairgrounds from February 12 to 19. 

Iranian veteran filmmaker Masud Kimiai has pulled his film “There Was Blood” from the official competition of the 38th Fajr Film Festival. 

“It’s a hard time for my people and they hear bad news every day. Under these circumstances I don’t want my film to be shown in the festival,” Kimiai announced in a video message released by Persian media on Sunday. 

Director Mitra Ebrahimi also has withdrawn her film “Kami” from the documentary section of the Fajr Film Festival. 

The 38th edition of the Fajr Film Festival will be held in Tehran from February 1 to 11.

Different theater troupes and directors have also withdrawn from the Fajr International Theater Festival. 

Four theater groups led by directors Hossein Akbarpur, Puya Ghazi, Amin Rezai and Arash Dadgar are among the troupes. 

The 38th Fajr International Theater Festival will take place in Tehran from January 30 to February 9.  

In addition, a number of theater troupes joined the chorus of mourners for the event by canceling their Sunday performances.

On Saturday morning, the Armed Forces General Staff released a statement noting that human error in an air defense mistakenly targeted the Ukrainian passenger plane near Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Airport. 176 people on board lost their lives.

The incident happened a few hours after Iran fired dozens of missiles at the U.S. airbase inside Iraq in retaliation for the assassination of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad.

Photo: A poster for the 12th Fajr Festival of Visual Arts.

ABU/MMS/YAW
 

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