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Iranian singer's 'sickening' anti-Islam post embarrasses hard-liners

An Iranian singer supported by the country's hard-liners has become a source of embarrassment after he greatly offended Shiite Islam in a social media post.

Furious reactions are pouring in after Iranian singer Amir Hossein Maghsoudlou, known as Amir Tataloo, posted graphically-worded lines against Shiite Islam and its followers on Instagram, where he is followed by over four million people. The post seems to be a response to a video that shows the apparent burning of 72 doves at a Shiite passion play on the occasion of the Islamic holy month of Muharram. Social media users initially speculated that the doves were intentionally burned alive to symbolize the 72 companions of the third Shiite imam, said to have been killed alongside Hussein ibn Ali by the forces of the caliph in 680. But Animal Rights Watch later stated that the clip was four years old and that the doves were supposed to have been evacuated from tents that were set on fire as part of the passion play, but that the person responsible for doing so had neglected his duties.

The Instagram post has become a tremendous embarrassment for the country's hard-liners, who have supported the controversial singer over the past two years to appeal to younger Iranians despite his apparently unreligious behavior and lifestyle.

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