Iranian newspaper shut down for....
...publishing a Ba'hai picture...
A popular conservative newspaper critical of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been closed down for carrying a photograph of a temple of the banned Bahai faith, media reported on Tuesday.
At the same time, the publishers of another daily, Khabar, linked to a conservative rival of Ahmadinejad, have decided to stop publication due to unspecified pressure, the Etemad newspaper said.
Etemad quoted deputy culture minister Mohammad Ali Ramin as saying both newspapers had violated media laws and had received warnings from the Islamic Republic’s press supervisory board.
Government opponents may see such action by the authorities as an attempt to muzzle criticism of the hard-line president after his disputed re-election in June, which plunged Iran into months of political turmoil.
Earlier in November, the press supervisory body banned the publication of a leading business daily, Sarmayeh, which has been critical of the government’s economic policies.
Hamshahri, which belongs to the Tehran municipality and is Iran’s highest-circulation newspaper, was closed down after it carried a front-page advertisement for tourism travel to India showing a Bahai temple of worship, media said.