February 25, 2002 - Updated on January 20, 2016

A conservative daily banned

In a letter addressed to to the head of the magistracy, Ayatollah Sharudi, Reporters sans frontières (Reporters Without Borders - RSF) protested against the banning for two months of the daily Siyassat-é-Rouz. "We ask you to annul this decision," said Robert Ménard, secretary general of RSF. According to information obtained by RSF, on 24 February, judge Saïd Mortazi ordered a two-month ban of the daily Siyassat-é-Rouz, a newspaper with close links to the conservative movement. The newspaper faces thirty-three complaints. Ali Yousefpour, the newspaper's managing editor, told Agence France-Presse that this decision followed a complaint by the Ministry of Labor, and said that he would appeal. The exact reasons for the ban are unknown. Reporters sans frontières recalls that Iran has the sad record of being the largest prison for journalists in the Middle East, with nineteen media professionals behind bars. Most of these prisoners have not yet been tried after months of imprisonment. According to the vice-minister of Culture and Islamic Orientation, more than fifty newspapers (including twenty four dailies) have been shut down since March 2000, not counting student press. Ali Khamenei, the Guide of the Islamic Republic, has been named by RSF as one of the predators of press freedom.