Oscar-winning actress Jane Fonda was arrested while protesting over political inaction on climate change in Washington DC.

The 81-year-old star shared footage on social media which showed her being escorted away by police officers as she protested outside the US Capitol building with Oil Change International, a group advocating for clean energy.

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In a clip posted to Instagram before her arrest, Fonda explained why she was getting involved in the protests, which she calls the Fire Drill Friday protests. 

She said: "Inspired by the young Swedish activist Greta Thunberg and the student strikers, I decided to upend my life and move to Washington DC for four months to focus on climate change."

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CBS News reported that she was one of 16 people to be arrested. They were all charged with crowding, obstructing or incommoding. Fonda was released without bail but may have to appear in court at a later date. 

Fonda, who was nicknamed Hanoi Jane in the 1970s for her protests against the Vietnam War, has a history of activism. Last month she was pictured speaking at the global climate strike in Los Angeles and in 2016 she was among the protesters at Standing Rock, demonstrating against the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline.