Sunday, August 07, 2005

Crackdown on Kurdish press following clashes in Kurdistan

Reporters Without Borders today condemned a wave of harassment of Kurdish journalists by local authorities in Iranian Kurdistan, which has been hit by clashes in recent weeks, and the closure of the daily Achti and the weekly Asou at the behest of the ministry of culture and Islamic guidance.

"We condemn this crackdown on the Kurdish press because Iranian Kurdistan has more need than ever of its journalists in these times of great tension," the press freedom organisation said. "We call on the authorities to stop the harassment of Kurdish journalists and to lift the suspension of Achti and Asou."

Asou, which is published in both Kurdish and Farsi, was closed by judicial officials in Sanandaj (the capital of Kurdistan) on 3 August, probably because of its editorial line and its coverage of the events shaking the region.


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