Monday, June 22, 2009

Friend, Colleague Maziar Bahari Arrested in Iran


NEWSWEEK Reporter Arrested

Journalist and filmmaker Maziar Bahari detained in Tehran. NEWSWEEK calls for his immediate release.

Among the dozens of people arrested overnight in Tehran was NEWSWEEK reporter Maziar Bahari, who has covered Iran for the magazine for over a decade. Bahari was home asleep at 7 a.m. when several security officers showed up at his Tehran apartment. According to his mother, who lives with the 41-year-old reporter and documentary filmmaker, the men did not identify themselves. They seized Bahari's laptop and several videotapes. Assuring her that he would be their guest, they then left with Bahari. He has not been heard from since.

In a statement, NEWSWEEK magazine has strongly condemned the detention of Bahari and called for him to be released immediately. Bahari is a dual Canadian-Iranian citizen. According to the statement, "His coverage of Iran, for NEWSWEEK and other outlets, has always been fair and nuanced, and has given full weight to all sides of the issues. He has always worked well with different administrations in Tehran, including the current one."

NEWSWEEK Editor Jon Meacham said, "We are deeply concerned about Mr. Bahari's detention. As a longtime NEWSWEEK reporter he has worked hard to be balanced in his coverage of Iran. We see no reason why he should be held by the authorities. We respectfully ask that they release him as soon as possible."...(more)

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