Iranian actress Farahani Golshifteh
Iranian actress Farahani Golshifteh

A nude photo of the Iranian actress Golshifteh Farahani has sparked angry reactions from her fans and a warning from Tehran.

The Paris-based actress who left Tehran last year posed naked for the French magazine Madame Le Figaro.

Within hours of the photo's publication Farahani received thousands of reactions.

While many supported her move in defiance of her country's strict religious and moral codex, others were outraged.

The actress also posted the picture on her Facebook page on January 18 but the post was removed in the afternoon after more than 11,000 people commented on it.

Her detractors accused her of "indecency", or to be demeaning to women.

"This is more discriminating to the women than the compulsory hijab. I am very much disappointed with Golshifteh, but she is free to do whatever she wants", a comment read.

"It is impossible, she would never do that!" another added.

The 29-year-old, who was also part of a rock band when she was in Iran, left her homeland after she was subjected to months of interrogation by the Iranian information ministry for appearing in the Hollywood blockbuster "Body of Lies" in 2008.

Now she says she has received an order from the Ahmadinejad government not to travel back to Iran.

"I was told by a Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guide official that Iran does not need any actors or artists. You may offer your artistic services somewhere else", Farahani said, the Telegraph reported.

British-based rights activist Matyam Namazie, who is the spokesperson for Equal Rights Now - Organisation against Women's Discrimination in Iran, has reiterated her support for Farahani, writing on her blog: "I unequivocally support Golshifteh Farahani"

"We need nudity now more than ever to break the hold of Islam and Islamism in our lives particularly since Islam hates a woman's body like nothing else..."