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August 30

Iran jails lawyer over US radio interview

TEHRAN, Aug 30 (AFP) - The defence lawyer for several pro-reform Iranian newspapers banned earlier this year was arrested in connection with a US radio interview, the state IRNA news agency said Wednesday. Mohammad-Ali Jedari-Forouqi was jailed Monday on charges of helping the editor of a pro-reform journal spread "false allegations" about the Iranian courts in an interview with US radio network Voice of America (VOA) >>> FULL TEXT

August 28

Head of a film & sports newspaper summoned to hardline court

TEHRAN, Aug 28 (AFP) - The managing editor of a film and sport newspaper has been summoned to appear at Tehran's conservative Special Court for Clergy (SCC), the official IRNA news agency reported Monday. Cleric Ali Afsahi, the director of the Cinema-Varzesh (cinema and sports) weekly, has to appear at the court Wednesday where he will be informed of the charges brought up against him, IRNA said >>> FULL TEXT

August 23

Tehran's press court summons capital's mayor

TEHRAN, Aug 23 (AFP) - Tehran's mayor Morteza Aliviri appeared at the capital's press court Wednesday to answer charges facing him in his capacity as the director of the Hamshahri paper, the largest circulation daily in Iran. According to judicial sources, Alviri, "responded to press court judge Said Mortazavi's questions relating to charges made against his paper," which is run by the municipality >>> FULL TEXT

August 22

Opposition figure released from detention

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Opposition figure Ezatollah Sahabi, who was detained in Tehran after he returned from a controversial conference in Berlin in April, has been released pending trial, state radio said Tuesday. The Iranian judicial system decided the conference was "anti-Islamic," after some participants attacked Iran's Islamic regime for press censorship and political repression >>> FULL TEXT

August 22

Prominent reformist journalist placed in solitary confinement

TEHRAN, Aug 22 (AFP) - Reformist journalist Mashallah Shamsolvaezin jailed in April for "hurting Islam" has been placed in solitary confinement, his wife said cited by the press here Tuesday. "We were informed by other detained friends that Shamsolvaezin has been transfered to an individual prison cell since Sunday, but we do not know why," his wife said cited by the Hayate-No paper >>> FULL TEXT

August 21

Two women editors in press court

TEHRAN, Aug 21 (AFP) - The editors of two magazines, both of them women, appeared in press court Monday to face charges ranging from defamation to publishing anti-Islamic propaganda. Taraneh Behzadi, head of the scientfic and cultural monthly Danestaniha, which is considered close to the reform movement, has been accused of defamation and publishing false information >>> FULL TEXT

August 20

Conservative papers refuse to reveal circulation figures

TEHRAN, Aug 20 (AFP) - At least eight conservative Iranian newspapers have ignored an order by the culture ministry to make public their print runs, the Hamshahri daily reported on Sunday. The order was given in a bid to "make the workings of the press transparent," according to an excerpt of the directive published by Hamshahri >>> FULL TEXT

August 17

Court slaps permanent ban on 'Ava' newspaper paper

TEHRAN, Aug 17 (AFP) - Iran's press court imposed a permanent ban on a suspended pro-reform newspaper and barred its director from further press activities, newspapers said here Thursday. Ava (The Voice) was one of more than 20 publications closed in a sweeping crackdown on the press over the past few months led by the conservative- dominated courts >>> FULL TEXT

August 16

Judicial official casts doubt on the re-opening of newspapers: paper

TEHRAN, Aug 16 (AFP) - A conservative newspaper, citing an unidentified "high-ranking" official in the judiciary, cast doubt Wednesday on reports that banned papers would be returning to newsstands soon. The official, quoted in the Qods daily, contradicted statements Monday by Iran's number-two judge, Hadi Marvi, that some of the more than 20 newspapers and magazines could be allowed to re-open >>> FULL TEXT

August 16

Radical daily resumes publication in reformist guise

TEHRAN, Aug 16 (AFP) - A radical daily which ceased publication last year reappeared Wednesday expressing support for the reforms of President Mohammad Khatami. Jahan-e-Eslam (World of Islam) said it was now the organ of the Association of Partisan Forces of the Imam (APFI), a group formed in 1997 at the time of Khatami's election >>> FULL TEXT

August 15

Press courts carry on press crackdown

TEHRAN, Aug 15 (Reuters) - Iran's hardline Press Court opened a new case against a convicted publisher on Tuesday, one day after a top judiciary official suggested the crackdown on the pro-reform press could be winding down. The court summoned Mohammad Reza Zohdi, sentenced last month to four months in jail on separate press charges, to answer new allegations. His Arya newspaper was closed for good >>> FULL TEXT

August 15

Relatives of jailed journalists working for release

TEHRAN, Aug 15 (AFP) - Relatives of Iran's jailed journalists have banded together to form a new association to work for their release, the group said in a statement Tuesday. The Association of Families of Detained Journalists said in a statement received by AFP that it expected members of the journalist's guild as well as members of parliament to participate in the group's work >>> FULL TEXT

August 15

Journalist group criticizes Iran press clampdown

PARIS (Reuters) - International media watchdog Reporters without Borders (RsF) Monday accused Iran's supreme leader of turning his country into a huge jail for journalists and published an Internet petition seeking the release of those held. The Paris-based RsF, which also called for an end to a crackdown on pro-reform newspapers, said 14 Iranian journalists were being held and another 16 faced prosecution and possible arrest >>> FULL TEXT

August 15

Reformers seek to protect free press

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - In a daring move after an order from Iran's supreme leader to drop a debate on press freedoms, reformist lawmakers presented a bill Tuesday that aims to block the hard-line judiciary from closing reformist newspapers. Legislators submitted an ``extremely urgent'' motion to the parliament, or Majlis, seeking a debate on whether it was legal to close newspapers under the Security Measures Law, the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) quoted a lawmaker as saying >>> FULL TEXT

August 14

Courts may let some banned newspapers re-open

TEHRAN, Aug 14 (AFP) - The conservative courts will allow several newspapers closed in the recent press crackdown to begin publishing again, the nation's number two judge said on Monday. "Following talks with the chief justice, some papers whose preliminary investigations have been completed will be authorised to resume their activities," deputy chief justice Hadi Marvi said, cited by the official IRNA news agency >>> FULL TEXT

August 14

Judge bans reformist book

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - A hard-line judge has banned the sale of a book that implicates former government officials in the 1998 murders of five dissidents, the author's wife and publisher said Saturday. Judge Saeed Mortazavi did not give any reasons for imposing the ban on ``Tragedy of Democracy in Iran'' by Emadeddin Baqi, Baqi's wife, Fatemeh Kamali, said >>> FULL TEXT

August 14

Newspaper folds because of financial difficulties

TEHRAN, Aug 14 (AFP) - A newspaper geared towards housewives has stopped publishing because of financial problems, the state news agency IRNA said Monday. "We have done all we could do, sold all we could sell, but the expenses are too much and we cannot continue," said Hossein Ferdos, director Sobh-e-Khanevadeh, or Family Morning >>> FULL TEXT

August 13

List of journalists and politicians jailed or facing charges

TEHRAN, Aug 13 (AFP) - The arrest Sunday of two pro-reform Iranian journalists is the latest in a series of legal measures against top writers and politicians in the Islamic republic. Herewith is a partial list of others already in jail or facing charges >>> FULL TEXT

August 13

Opposition movement calls on leader to repeal press decree

TEHRAN, Aug 13 (AFP) - An Iranian opposition movement on Sunday called on supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to reconsider his decree banning the new pro-reform parliament from rolling back tough curbs on the press.

The banned but tolerated Iran Freedom Movement (IFM), in an open letter to Khamenei, blasted his "interference in the affairs of the elected parliament.">>> FULL TEXT

August 10

International criticism mounts over crackdown on Iran's press

NICOSIA, Aug 10 (AFP) - International criticism is mounting over a continuing crackdown on the reformist Iranian press by the country's conservative Islamic regime. After months of successive newspaper closures and the jailing of journalists, Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Sunday issued a shock decree banning the new reformist-dominated parliament from carrying out plans to overturn the country's tough press laws >>> FULL TEXT

August 9

Amnesty expresses concern over arrest of journalists

Amnesty International, 9 August 2000 -- In a renewed crackdown on freedom of speech in Iran, the authorities have arrested three prominent journalists. One of them is diabetic, and has reportedly found it difficult to obtain insulin in custody. Amnesty International considers the three men to be prisoners of conscience, detained solely for the legitimate expression of their opinions >>> FULL TEXT

Behnoud held as crackdown goes on

TEHRAN, Aug 9 (AFP) - Iran's supreme court approved a two and a half-year prison term Wednesday for reformist journalist Mashallah Shamsolvaezin, a judicial official said. Meanwhile the press court issued a warrant for Masud Behnud, a liberal writer close to President Mohammad Khatami, saying he would be arrested if he does not appear in court by Saturday >>> FULL TEXT

Shamsolvaezin sentence confirmed, Behnoud summoned

TEHRAN, Aug 9 (AFP) - Iran's supreme court approved a two and a half-year prison term Wednesday for reformist journalist Mashallah Shamsolvaezin, a judicial official said. Meanwhile the press court issued a warrant for Masud Behnud, a liberal writer close to President Mohammad Khatami, saying he would be arrested if he does not appear in court by Saturday >>> FULL TEXT

August 8

Reformist MP quits post over conservative onslaught on press

TEHRAN, Aug 8 (AFP) - The head of Iran's parliamentary commission for culture, Ahmad Pour-Nejati, resigned his post Tuesday to protest against recent conservative-led attacks against pro-reformers and press. "I have resigned from my post as president of the commission in order to defend parliament," the deputy said at the beginning of the parliamentary session >>> FULL TEXT

Hard-liners demonstrate

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - Hard-liners protesting outside parliament called on Tuesday for the death and expulsion of reformists who dared challenge an order from Iran's supreme leader that squelched debate on easing the country's restrictive press law. In a second day of protests outside the legislature, demonstrators called for the execution of lawmaker Mohammad Rashidian, who sought to debate the proposed changes two days ago. ``Traitor Rashidian must be executed!'' the protesters shouted >>> FULL TEXT

August 7

    Iran's leader stamps on freedom
    Ayatollah tells MPs to spike their reformist press bill

By Geneive Abdo, in Tehran
The Guardian
August 7, 2000

The supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, ordered the reformist parliament yesterday to abandon its promise to expand freedom of speech and revive the banned progressive press. It was seen as a step toward re-asserting clerical rule over participatory democracy.

Ayatollah Khamenei's action runs counter to the hopes of millions whose votes in February's general election sent to parliament a majority of reformists who had run on platforms including a free press >>> FULL TEXT

    Iran leader bars a bill restoring freedom of press

By Nazila Fathi
The New York Times
August 7, 2000

Quashing a cherished goal of President Mohammad Khatami and his reformist allies, Iran's supreme religious leader today sided conclusively with the country's conservatives and ordered Parliament to scrap a bill aimed at restoring a free press.

The surprise intervention by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country's top Muslim cleric, stunned reformers who had hoped to use their newly won strength in Parliament to revive the once vigorous liberal press >>> FULL TEXT

Press group protests Iranian failure to free media

VIENNA, Aug 7 (AFP) - The International Press Institute (IPI) expressed deep concern Monday over Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's decision to ban the reformist parliament from rolling back a series of tough press curbs. The Vienna-based lobbying group, in an open letter to Khamenei calling on him to re-introduce the legislation, lamented a series of incidents including the banning of a pro-reform newspaper and the arrest of a journalist >>> FULL TEXT

"Demonstration" at parliament to support curbs on press

TEHRAN, Aug 7 (AFP) - Hundreds of people rallied outside the Iranian parliament Monday in support of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, a day after he quashed reformist hopes of repealing the nation's tough press laws. The crowd chanted "US-style reforms, Never, never!" and "Woe the day that my leader gives me the command for jihad (holy war). The world's armies will not be able to stop me.">>> FULL TEXT

Courts vow to stamp out press "corruption"

TEHRAN, Aug 7 (AFP) - Iran's conservative-dominated judiciary announced Monday it was determined to stamp out "corrupt" elements working in collusion with the foreign press, state radio reported. "Some of these elements are at the origin of propaganda campaigns against the regime and cooperate with foreign media such as the Voice of America and Israeli radio, the BBC and Radio Free Iran," said Abbas Alizadeh, head of the judiciary in Tehran province >>> FULL TEXT

Reformist writer detained in Iran

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - Bolstered by an order from Iran's supreme leader that undercut hopes of greater press freedom, hard-liners arrested a liberal journalist and shut down a reformist newspaper on Monday. Using powers granted by the restrictive press law the reformers had hoped to ammend, plainclothes security forces arrested journalist Ahmad Zeidabadi at his home Monday >>> FULL TEXT

Female reporters criticise inequality of sexes

TEHRAN, Aug 7 (AFP) - Women reporters marked national journalists' day here Monday by condemning the "inequality of the sexes" in the workplace, the official IRNA news agency reported. "Despite all the slogans, an inequality of the sexes exists between journalists performing the same work," said Maryam Afshari, a staff member at the government-run Iran daily >>> FULL TEXT

August 5

Eshkevari detained

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - A liberal Iranian writer and cleric was detained Saturday for attending a controversial Berlin conference on Iran, his son said. The official Islamic Republic News Agency confirmed the arrest of Hassan Yousefi Eshkevari, saying he was taken to Tehran's Evin prison for investigation on security charges >>> FULL TEXT

August 3

Sahabi demands his release from prison

TEHRAN, Aug 3 (AFP) - A leading opposition figure jailed for taking part in a controversial political seminar abroad has demanded his release from prison, his lawyer said in a statement received by AFP on Thursday. Ezzatollah Sahabi is still in prison although all others arrested for participating in the Berlin seminar that shocked conservatives have since been freed on bail, his lawyer said >>> FULL TEXT

August 2

Iranian progressive released on bail

TEHRAN, Aug 2 (AFP) - Taghi Rahmani, a member of Iran's progressive opposition, was released late Tuesday after 24 hours in jail for "insulting the supreme leader" Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the official IRNA news agency reported. Rahmani, who had been arrested and imprisoned Monday in the central town of Shahr-e Kord, was released on bail, his lawyer Mohammad-Ali Jedari said cited by the agency >>> FULL TEXT

August 1

Reformist editor sentenced to four months in jail

TEHRAN, Aug 1 (AFP) - Tehran's press court sentenced the publisher of the banned reformist daily Arya to a four-month jail term and a ban on further press activities, newspapers reported Tuesday. Hamid Reza Zohdi was found guilty of "provoking public opinion, publishing malicious lies, insulting the state, eroding the regime of the Islamic Republic and (printing) anti-state propaganda >>> FULL TEXT

New reformist newspaper banned in Iran

TEHRAN, Aug 1 (Reuters) - An Iranian revolutionary court has banned a provincial reformist newspaper which had tried to shed light on alleged corruption and mismanagement in the Islamic republic, the former daily said in a fax on Tuesday. Ruzdara, the only independent newspaper in Sistan- Baluchestan, a poverty-stricken province in southeastern Iran, was forced to stop publishing last Thursday by a court decree >>> FULL TEXT

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