Hard-line Iranian weekly suspended

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An Iranian hard-line weekly that has been one of the most vocal critics of the new administration has been suspended.

The weekly 9 Dey, whose editor is hard-line member of parliament Hamid Rasaei, has received a total of six warnings from the Press Supervisory Board in the last year for violating a number of media laws. The board operates under President Hassan Rouhani’s Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance, which is currently headed by Ali Jannati.

Rasaei has responded to the suspension with a series of attacks against the Rouhani administration. On his personal website he published a letter from the secretary of the Press Supervisory Board to the prosecutor in which the stated reasons for the suspension is claims by 9 Dey that Iran’s nuclear scientists have been fired since the Geneva nuclear deal in November 2013. Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, has adamantly denied that any scientists have been fired. Continue reading

EU parliament delegation’s meeting with ‘seditionists’ prompts backlash

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 8.25.32 AMAfter an eight-member European parliament delegation visited Tehran for the first time in six years in a sign of warming ties between Iran and the EU, a resulting backlash has raised demands for an inquiry after hard-liners in Iran criticized the delegation’s “secret” meeting with dissident filmmaker Jaffar Panahi and human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh at the Greek Embassy in Tehran.

The head of Iran’s Administrative Justice Court, Mohammad Jaffar Montazeri, said in a public session that while it is customary for parliamentary delegations to discuss economic matters, this delegation “secretly met with two seditionists who were convicted in the 2009 sedition.” He added, “It needs to become clear who made this meeting possible.” The term “sedition” is used by Iranian officials in reference to the 2009 protests.

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