News Iran: Press freedom violations recounted in real time January 2020 IranMiddle East – North Africa June 11, 2021 Find out more IranMiddle East – North Africa Organisation Receive email alerts Iran is stepping up pressure on journalists, including foreign journalists, in run-up to election March 18, 2021 Find out more Follow the news on Iran to go further July 12, 2006 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Government uses ‘velvet revolution’ charge against Jahanbegloo and other journalists News Help by sharing this information RSF_en Reporters Without Borders roundly condemns the methods used by the authorities to keep journalist Ramin Jahanbegloo in detention and calls for the immediate release of all journalists held in Iran. The organisation also accuses the Iranian government of inventing new ways to stifle the press and free expression. News June 9, 2021 Find out more News Call for Iranian New Year pardons for Iran’s 21 imprisoned journalists Reporters Without Borders today condemned the Iranian intelligence minister’s recent allegations against imprisoned journalist and intellectual Ramin Jahanbegloo and voiced concern about a new crackdown on the press in Iran.“Accusing Jahanbegloo of helping to prepare a ‘velvet revolution’ is just a new political manoeuvre by the government with the aim of tightening the gag on the press,” Reporters Without Borders said. “We fear that the authorities – after closing more than 20 newspapers for good, summoning dozens of journalists for questioning since the start of the year and banning others from leaving the country – will now launch a new wave of arrests of journalists.”Akbar Ganji, a leading Iranian journalist currently travelling abroad following his recent release, has appealed to the Iranian community and the press for rallies to press calls for the release of all prisoners of conscience including Jahanbegloo.Intelligence minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejeie accused Jahanbegloo on 3 July of “taking part in a US attempt to carry out a velvet revolution in Iran.” A few days later, Tehran chief prosecutor Said Mortazavi named Hassan Hadad – a judge who has had many journalists arrested and who, according to some sources, was a torturer in Evin prison in the 1980s – as deputy prosecutor in charge of security issues.The appointment has prompted concern about a new wave of arrests among dissident circles. Hadad’s job is to crack down “with force on security problems, espionage, attempts to overthrow the regime and threats to public order.” Since April 2000, he has had the task of cracking down on the “enemy” press.Jahanbegloo, who contributes to several foreign news media including the BBC and the French magazines Esprit and Etudes et Projets, was arrested on 28 April at Tehran airport as he was about to leave the country to attend an international conference on Iran. He has been placed in solitary confinement in a security wing of Evin prison.A total of 12 journalists and bloggers are currently detained in Iran. They include Mana Neyestani, Mehrdad Qassemfar, Orouj Amiri, Ali Hamed Iman and Abolfazel Vessali, who have been held for months while their lawyers have not been allowed to visit them in prison or see their case files.