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Sep 30, 4:25 PM EDT

Iranian filmmakers call for nuclear deal


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TEHRAN, Iran (AP) -- Six prominent Iranian movie directors have launched a campaign calling for a nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.

The filmmakers include Rakhshan Bani-Etemad, who won the award for best screenplay at this year's Venice Film Festival, and Asghar Farhadi, who won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2012.

Slogans on the website, No2NoDeal.com, say a deal to resolve the decade-long impasse over Iran's nuclear program is possible by the Nov. 24 deadline and call for the lifting of crippling international sanctions. It suggests any deal is better than "No Deal" because the sanctions have harmed ordinary Iranians.

The website, which is in English and not Farsi, appears aimed at seeking international support among fellow filmmakers and moviegoers.

Iran's artistic community largely supports President Hassan Rouhani, a moderate elected last year on promises to engage with the West diplomatically in order to resolve the nuclear dispute. Last September, Rouhani's government allowed the reopening of a prominent center for filmmakers and artists more than 20 months after it was closed by hard-liners.

Western nations have long suspected Iran of secretly pursuing nuclear weapons alongside its civilian atomic program. Iran denies such allegations and insists its nuclear program is entirely devoted to peaceful purposes like power generation and medical isotopes.

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On the web: http://no2nodeal.com/

Follow Nasser Karimi on Twitter (at)ncarrimi

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