Iran: IFJ denounces the systematic harassment against BBC Persian journalists at the Human Rights Council

BBC journalist Rana Rahimpour attended today on behalf of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) the Human Rights Council in Geneva. During her intervention, she denounced the systematic harassment by the Iranian regime of current and former BBC Persian staff.

Credits: IFJ

Read here the full speech of Rana Rahimpour

Thank you Mr Vice-President, for the chance to address the Council on behalf of the International Federation of Journalists. 

Since the protests in November, Iran has increased its intimidation of family members of BBC Persian journalists. Our relatives have been interrogated and their passports confiscated.

Together with my colleagues, I am being harassed and persecuted by Iran because of my reporting. BBC Persian broadcasts in Farsi to over 20 million people around the world.

Since 2009, the Iranian authorities have been systematically harassing us and our families.

We can’t return to Iran for fear of arrest. Colleagues have lost loved ones without being able to say goodbye or attend funerals.

I receive daily death threats online. I was recently told that I’m not safe in London, that they will cut my children's’ throats and that I will be assassinated.  

In 2017 Iran began an investigation into staff at the BBC’s Persian Service on charges of conspiracy against national security and our assets were frozen.

We now know that the investigation and asset freeze has been extended to many other Iranian journalists working outside Iran.

We urge the Special Rapporteur and the Council to make respect for press freedom central to engagement with Iran.

For more information, please contact IFJ on +32 2 235 22 16

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 146 countries

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