Sources say reformist newspapers targeted by group of plain-clothes officials who ransacked offices and filmed staff
Saeed Kamali Dehghan
guardian.co.uk, Sunday 27 January 2013
Security officials in Iran have raided at least four newspapers and arrested several journalists in what appears to be concerted action aimed at intimidating the media in advance of the presidential elections in June.
Sources in Tehran said reformist newspapers Etemaad, Shargh, Bahar and Arman were targeted by a group of plain-clothes officials who ransacked offices, filmed staff, confiscated documents and held several journalists.
When the Guardian phoned journalists at Etemaad and Bahar in the evening, officials were still present in the offices and editors of the two newspapers could not be reached. Etemaad’s editor-in-chief, Javad Daliri, was reported to be among at least 10 journalists who have been arrested.
The semi-official Mehr news agency confirmed that a number of journalists have been arrested and said that officials were holding arrest warrants issued by judicial authorities.
Others reported to have been arrested include Sassan Aghaei, Nasrin Takhiri, Pourya Alami, Emili Amraee, Pejman Mousavi, Saba Azarpeik, Narges Joudaki, Motahareh Shafiee and Akbar Montajebi. It not clear where they have been taken, nor if more journalists have been detained. Journalists from the reformist Aseman weekly have also been arrested, according to Mehr.