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Iran to boycott 2013 Oscars over anti-Islam film

  • Iran is to boycott the 2013 Oscars in protest of a U.S.-produced anti-Islam video that has sparked outrage across the Muslim world.

    Culture and Islamic Guidance Minister Mohammad Hosseini said Iran would boycott the next Academy Awards "to protest against the making of a film insulting the Prophet (Mohammed) and because of the organizers' failure to take an official position (against the film).”

    He also urged other Islamic countries to boycott the Oscars.

    The amateur video was posted on YouTube earlier this year and depicts the Prophet Mohammad as a womanizer and leader of a bloodthirsty gang.

    It triggered days of violent protests in which dozens of people, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya, were killed.

    Despite censorship and the repression of controversial filmmakers, Iranian art cinema has received international acclaim in recent decades.

    Asghar Farhadi's A Separation won the Oscar for best foreign language film in February, the first Iranian film to do so.

    Reza Mirkarimi's comedy drama A Cube of Sugar had been chosen as Iran's submission for the 2013 foreign-language category.