New reformist Iranian paper hits the streets
TEHRAN, Dec 3 (AFP) - The first edition of reformist newspaper
Khordad, run by a close associate of President Mohammad Khatami, hit Tehran's
news stands on Thursday. The paper takes its name from the date Khatami
was elected in May 1997.
The 12-page colour newspaper is run by former interior minister Abdollah
Nuri, who was ousted in June after a censure motion by the conservative
dominated parliament amid a tense power struggle between the regime's moderate
and hardline factions.
Nuri is now vice president for development and social affairs, a post
that does not require parliamentary approval.
Iran's newspapers continue to flourish although the press has come under
increasing pressure from the conservative-dominated judiciary after a period
of relative openness following Khatami's election.
A number of papers have been closed down, most notably Tous, an outspoken
and often humorous paper that briefly became one of the country's most
Khordad aims to be "the journal for men, women and children in
Iran but also those beyond our borders whose hearts continue to beat for
Iran," it said in an editorial.
The paper, with a print run of around 100,000, said it wants to "promote
the humanist values of Islam (while remaining) faithful to the aims of
the revolution: independence, freedom and the Islamic republic."