Persecuted Iranian model, Negzzia, slept on the streets in Paris, after fleeing Iran due to fears of imprisonment.
Negzzia has been on the run from the Revolutionary Guards since they arrested a photographer she once worked with, according to Agencia EFE.
The photographer took partially nude photos of her, which is punishable by 148 lashes and prison in Iran.
She goes by “Negzzia”, which is not her real name, to protect her identity.
In an interview with Le Parisien, the model accused the photographer of trying to rape her.
After warning other women in the industry about the photographer, he retaliated by “denouncing” her.
Negzzia received a phone call a few days later which resulted in her packing her bags and leaving Iran.
“I just remembered that he told me 'say goodbye to your body' and in that moment I understood that,” she said to EFE.
“I just took a small bag and moved to Istanbul."
Fleeing Iran, Negzzia made her way to Turkey, where she continued working as a model. Dreaming of Paris and afraid of being spied on, she made the move there after a year in Istanbul.
The 29-year-old has been in Paris for nine months and completed her paper work to receive asylum last November.
Negzzia could not legally work while her status was processed and she has only recently been granted asylum.
While she waited to be granted asylum she slept on the street and sometimes on park benches. One day she had to sell a bag of her clothes just to buy food and there were times when she contemplated suicide.
While some men tried to help her, they quickly abandoned Negzzia when she refused to sleep with them.
According to Agencia EFE, one man shut Negzzia in a room for a week and another man tried to get her to work as a stripper. She convinced herself sleeping on the streets of Paris would be better than owing anybody anything.
Her case caught the attention of French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner after she received significant media attention.
Mr Castaner’s tweets confirmed French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA) were examining her situation.
Mr Castaner’s involvement in the matter proved controversial with many assuming Negzzia was granted asylum because she is a model, while there are hundreds of other refugees in the same situation, but don’t have a platform.
Negzzia was grateful for the help and responded to Mr Castaner on Instagram, where she now has more than 126,000 followers.
“Mr Minister, I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for your support,” she wrote in French.
“It is a great happiness to finally look at the future with more serenity.”
Negzzia says she wants to fight for her rights and see herself as a successful woman.
“Nothing can make me scared,” she told France 24. “I slept in the street, I ran away from my country, I had really crazy time, people wanted to rape me.”
“I will continue, or I will die.”
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