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Al Arabiya news channel's Tehran bureau chief expelled

(ANHRI/IFEX) - ANHRI condemns the Iranian authorities' expulsion of Hassan Fahs, the chief of Al Arabiya news television station's Tehran bureau, on 2 September 2008, after revoking his media accreditation. According to Al Arabiya's website, a documentary film about Iran aired under the title "The Road to The Revolution", may be the motive behind this decision.

The new Iranian measures against Al Arabiya news channel, among many other procedures undertaken by the Iranian government, are aimed at not simply limiting freedom of expression but at eliminating it entirely. In effect, by this decision, the government is abandoning the principle of freedom of expression.

It is regrettable that the institutions responsible for protecting freedom of expression in Iran are the very ones violating this freedom, notes ANHRI.

As the Ministry of Culture and Guidance expelled Fahs, and the Iranian News Agency is continuing its defamation campaign against the activist Shirin Ebadi, 2003 Nobel laureate, the Iranian judiciary is reviewing a new case against the Iranian activist and writer Emad Baghi, who is already a prisoner in Iran, because he established an association to defend prisoners' rights in Iran.

"Away from the high-profile conflict between Iran and the United States, there is a dense blackout on the Iranian government's warfare on the press and freedom of expression in Iran, that we determinedly reject and condemn," said ANHRI.

For further information on the Ebadi case, see: http://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/63829

For further information on the Baghi case, see: http://www.ifex.org/en/content/view/full/96449