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ARTICLE 19 highlights recent contributions to Azad Tribune

(ARTICLE 19/IFEX) - 19 March 2010 - As Iranian New Year approaches ARTICLE 19 would like to wish a happy new year to Iranians all over the world and to reaffirm its solidarity with those whose right to free speech and information has been violated.

This is the first of a series of updates on ARTICLE 19's work to combat censorship in Iran.

The government of Iran has developed a highly efficient system of oppression and censorship to control the exponential growth of online communities composed of institutions that enforce censorship, vaguely worded laws and regulations, and social and cultural restrictions.

ARTICLE 19 runs a dedicated website, , in Farsi and English, providing a platform for Iranian bloggers and free expression activists to discuss how to overcome censorship in the country and to share ideas and tools to make this a reality.

Azad Tribune is today publishing an article by Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi, who, in "Censorship in Iran and the World", explores how factors from the political to the economic, legal and social, contribute to the denial of free expression and access to information in Iran and elsewhere.

Other recent contributions to Azad Tribune include:

• Show Trials or Forced Confessions, by Potkin Azarmehr, who explores how the ongoing show trials in Iran are in fact a forced scenario imposed on individuals who do not fit the system.

• ARTICLE 19's Statement on International Women's Day celebrating the contribution of women who stand up for freedom of expression, including Shiva Nazar Ahari, an Iranain blogger, journalist and human rights defender, who in the past year, has been arrested on two occasions and spent more than 100 days in solitary confinement.

Azad Tribune is also pleased to support the UK premiere of Iran: Voices of the Unheard, in association with the Human Rights Watch Film Festival (17 – 26 March), a film that challenges the passivity of the international community in the face of ongoing censorship and repression in Iran.

ARTICLE 19 has joined forces with other leading free expression groups to call for the release of Iranian journalists, bloggers and writers. Please show your support by signing the petition on the campaign site or Facebook.

Visit us at to contribute to an online discussion on, and action against, censorship.

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