Iran: Rouhani must keep his promises to support organisations of journalists

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani speaks during a press conference in Tehran on May 22, 2017. Photo credit: ATTA KENARE / AFP

In a letter published yesterday, over 700 journalists in Iran urged newly elected president, Hassan Rouhani, to lift the ban on IFJ affiliate the Association of Iranian Journalists (AoIJ).

They also called for an end to the refusal to allow the official registration of  the Association of Tehran Journalists. 

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) backed the call.

During his campaign for re-election, Hassan Rohani expressed strong support for press freedom and freedom of association. Yet, the Association of Tehran Journalists, which organised its founding congress in December 2016 to meet the pressing demands from the press corps in the capital, has always been refused registration by public authorities. The offices of the AoIJ have been forcibly closed since 2009.

“Mr President, in these days of celebration for democracy, we want to congratulate you for this victory. As representative of the people of Iran,  we want to hold you to your campaign promises and deliver what you promised us”, the journalists’ letter to the re-elected president said. 

The IFJ argues that the AoIJ offices were closed unlawfully in August 2009 without any justifications and in violation of Iranian national laws as well as ILO and other international conventions related to labour rights and freedom of association.

IFJ president Philippe Leruth said: “In the aftermath of his election, President Hassan Rouhani must lead the way to strengthen press freedom and democracy in Iran. Independent journalism must be backed by strong and accountable organisations that are duly representative of our profession. We, once again, ask for the opening of the Association of Iranian journalists and the registration of the Association of Tehran journalists”. 


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