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Drop All Charges Against Iranian Journalist, Says IFJ

Reyhaneh Tabatabaie a journalist and political activist who has been arrested three times since 2010.

The General Secretary of International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has called upon the Islamic Republic’s authorities to drop “all charges” against Iranian journalist, Reyhaneh Tabatabaei.

Ms. Tabatabaei has been behind bars since January 12, 2016.

“We are greatly concerned by the fabricated charges that Reyhaneh is charged with. This journalist has been doing her job with due respect to journalistic standards and we see no reason why she should serve any other term in jail for exercising her freedom of speech. We ask the Iranian authorities to drop all charges against her,” IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said in a statement.

Tabatabaei has been arrested three times in the last eight years on charges related to her work.

Ms. Tabatabaei was originally arrested on December 12, 2010, by the Islamic Revolution Guardians Corps (IRGC) intelligence agents who interrogated and charged her with “trying to deny the supervisory role of the Guardian Council over elections”. She spent 36 days in solitary confinement, before she was released on bail.

But, in April 2011, she was sentenced to one year in prison. She was arrested for the second time on January 31, 2013 as part of a widespread clampdown on journalists. The prosecutor charged Tabatabaei and three of her colleagues with “intent to write a manifesto against the regime”, which is classified as a security offense.

Reyhaneh Tabatabaei, 37, is a journalist and a political activist. She works for the Iranian reformist news web site Emtedad and used to work for several reformist newspapers including Shargh, Farhikhtegan and Bahar.

Tabatabaei was tried in court three times in the past 8 years. In 2010 she was arrested under charges of “propaganda against the regime” and spent 36 days in confinement.

She was sentenced to a one-year jail term and served a 6-month sentence in Tehran’s notorious prison, Evin. The journalist has already spent a total of one and a half year behind bars, said IFJ.

The IFJ has relentlessly raised its concerns over the persecution of journalists in Iran.