Thank us for helping Iranian repression

The more the West bullies Tehran, the easier these outrages will occur:

Iranian newspapers have been banned from publishing the names or photos of the leaders of Iran‘s green movement, according to a confidential governmental ruling revealed by an opposition website.

The move is part of a new round of censorship, which follows the recent closure of a newspaper and the suspension of two magazines.

The ruling, issued by Iran’s ministry of culture and Islamic guidance on 18 August, was stamped “top secret” and “urgent”. It was addressed to the editors of newspapers and news agencies in Iran, and bans them from publishing any news about the defeated presidential candidates in last summer’s disputed election and current opposition leaders, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, and the former reformist president, Mohammad Khatami.

The opposition website has published a copy of the letter, which reads: “Keeping the society and the public opinion calm is the main responsibility of the media. Security officials have considerations about publishing news, photos and speeches of Mr Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi and Mohammad Khatami, therefore according to the clause 2 of the article 5 of the press code publishing news, photos and reports about the these people are prohibited.”

An Iranian journalist who works for a government paper, and asked not to be identified, told the Guardian: “Soon after the election last year, those papers which insisted on publishing news or reports about the opposition leaders were all closed down , so after a while an unwritten ruling overshadowed the media in Iran. Self-censorship meant no journalist even dared to utter the names of the opposition leaders to their editors, let alone publishing any news about them.”

Text and images ©2024 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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