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Journalists’ lives threatened in Iran

Journalists' lives threatened in IranNCRI – Reports from turbulent provinces in northwest Iran indicate that lives of journalists are threatened for reporting unrests in the past week.

Last Thursday, the residence of Orouj Amiri, a journalist working for the local press in the city of Marand, Eastern Azerbaijan province, was raided by eight members of the regime’s suppressive forces. According to his brother, Parviz, the agents did not produce any search or arrest warrant and they took Orouj to an unknown location after beating him up. His wife tried to prevent the agents but she was also beaten and taken together with her husband. Their house was thoroughly searched and all hand-written documents belonging to Orouj as well as his computer were also taken away. The neighbors noticed the incident when they heard Amiri’s child screaming and crying.

East Azerbaijan province has not been safe for journalist in recent months. According to reports from Tabriz, provincial capital of Eastern Azerbaijan, Ensafali Hedayat, a local journalist, left Iran after 18 months prison term to Turkey to apply for asylum at the UN office in that country.

Seyyed Ahmad Seyyed Saraji, a blogger from Tabriz also left Iran after several months of imprisonment and suffering 30 lashes to live in exile.

A woman journalist, Massoumeh Babapour, working for local media in Tabriz, was kidnapped and stabbed seven times by unidentified individuals. She was found half dead under a bridge.

Hossein Qorbani, photojournalist and Hadi Dehqani, editor of a weekly, Saqi, in Tabriz were subjected to physical assault by agents of the regime.

In the meantime unrests in Azeri speaking provinces continue which was sparked by major demonstrations in Tabriz, Zanjan and Ardebil against publication of an insulting cartoon.