In Iran, Beware Of New Facebook 'Friends'
Radio Free Europe / Golnaz Esfandiari

When Houshang Fanaian joined Facebook last year, little did he expect it would land him in an Iranian prison.

That's exactly where he finds himself today, however. In late May, the 47-year-old Baha'i had one year tacked on to a larger prison sentence due to his activities on the social-networking site.

Iran has blocked access to Facebook, but that has not prevented tens of thousands of Iranians from joining the site to connect with each other and share ideas, pictures, and even sensitive political content.

For the most part, the Iranian regime stood idly by if its efforts to block Facebook were circumvented.

Fanaian's sentencing is a rarity, but his case and others indicate that Iranian authorities are keeping a closer eye on Iranians' Facebook activities.

Among the more recent posts on his Facebook page are pictures of cute babies, an article about the "negative side effects" of artificial sugar, and a few news stories about the arrests of Baha'is

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