On the eve of tomorrow’s parliamentary elections in Iran, Reporters Without Borders condemns the censorship imposed on the media, which prevents them from playing their role during the polling, and the continuing, relentless crackdown on journalists. Iran’s 48 million voters are being denied the independently-reported news and information they need to make a choice. The crackdown on journalists and netizens has intensified. No independent media has been spared the political and judicial harassment that the various ruling clans have orchestrated since President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s disputed reelection in June 2009. A total of 48 journalists and netizens are currently detained, making Iran the world’s third biggest prison for the media.
“The governmental media are free to organize the regime’s propaganda for this election ‘among friends’ but the authorities have imposed all-out censorship on the media, even the ones that support the regime, and oversee their work closely,” Reporters Without Borders said. “The orders are clear – the only stories to be published are those that encourage people to go and vote.
“Since the start of the campaign, the media have received directives instructing them to refer to the ‘Iranian people’s great victory’ and not to mention or cover certain stories such as the boycott calls by several political currents. In the past few days, judicial officials have even called newspaper editors to dictate their front page and demand their silence on certain subjects.”