Unions highlight plight of Iranian journalists at UN event

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) is joining forces with the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) in the UK and Ireland, the BBC World Service and legal experts from Doughty Street Chambers to highlight the plight of Iranian journalists at an online event today to coincide with the United Nations Human Rights Council’s 47th session.

The United Nations Human Rights Council room. Credits: FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP

The IFJ and NUJ continue to campaign on behalf of journalists working for the BBC Persian Service and Iran International who are being systematically targeted and harassed by the Iranian authorities because of their work as journalists.

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary, said: "We have seen the level of abuse and instances of harassment of NUJ members increasduring the global health pandemic. Journalists based here in the UK are being harassed simply because of the work they do. Their families in Iran are being weaponised, causing enormous stress and strain for our members at the BBC Persian Service and Iran International. This outrageous and unacceptable abuse has to stop, and we are calling on the new government in Iran to stop these attacks on journalists and journalism.

IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: "We stand in solidarity with journalists at BBC Persian Service, Iran International, Deutsche Welle and Radio Farda who are being persecuted by the Iranian regime in an attempt to silence them and deny citizens the right to a range of voices. The new government must act urgently to stop the threats and attacks."

Today’s event, coordinated by the BBC, will be chaired by the IFJ's Jeremy Dear alongside the following speakers:

  • John Simpson: BBC foreign correspondent
  • Kasra Naji: presenter for BBC Persian television
  • Caoilfhionn Gallagher QC: Lead counsel for the BBC World Service from Doughty Street Chambers
  • Ambassador Rita French: UK UN Human Rights Ambassador
  • Ambassador Minna-Liina Lind: Estonian Human Rights Ambassador

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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