IFJ Condemns Media Witch Hunt as Journalists Flee Iran

The

International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today accused the Iranian authorities of a media witch hunt as journalists

flee the country or are in hiding after the closure of several newspapers and

the continued shutdown of the Association of Iranian

Journalists (AoIJ).

"There

is no let-up on the harassment of media in Iran,"

said Aidan White, IFJ General

Secretary. "Independent journalists are in flight for their own safety and the

independent media sector is under siege."

According

to reliable reports, up to six newspapers have been closed since controversial

presidential elections in June and at least 18 journalists remain in prison.

Many more continue to flee the country and others, including the President of

the AoIJ, Rajabali Mazrooei, are in hiding

and fearing arrest.

The

Association of Iranian Journalists

(AoIJ), an IFJ affiliate, says it has applied to the authorities in Tehran to reopen their office,

but their appeal has so far made no progress.

An IFJ regional meeting which

brought together 15 union members in the Middle East and the Arab World held in

Amman from 5-7 October adopted a strong

resolution calling for end of media clampdown in Iran.

The statement from union

leaders in the region said:

‘'We note with dismay the

deterioration of conditions in Iran,

where the journalists' association was closed and dozens of journalists

detained while others were forced to flee the country.

"The meeting expresses full

solidarity with Iranian colleagues and calls on the Iranian

authorities to lift the siege on the offices of the Iranian

Association of Journalists and to release all journalists and to end harassment."

For more information

contact the IFJ at +32 2 235 2207

The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists

in 123 countries worldwide