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Iran Has Banned Publication Of News On Water Shortage

In this Tuesday, July 10, 2018 photo, the Zayandeh Roud river no longer runs under the 400-year-old Si-o-seh Pol bridge, named for its 33 arches, in Isfahan, Iran.

A member of the Iranian Parliament (Majles) has disclosed that the country's Supreme National Security Council has banned the publication of news reports about water-related problems including shortage and misuse of resources.

The disclosure appears to have happened inadvertently when the official news agency IRNA quoted Ardeshir Nourial, a lawmaker on Saturday February 23 as having said that officials in Isfahan Province, ignore government directives including the ban on publication of news reports on water shortage.

Isfahan and its surrounding towns and villages have been the scene of protest demonstrations during the past year against government measures, including allocating the province's water to other areas.

The measures have dried up Isfahan's main river, Zayandeh Roud, and left tens of thousands of farmers in the province without water, putting their livelihood in danger.

The disclosure by the MP, is the first indication of Tehran's attempt to create a news blackout about water shortage in Iran. Bans on publication on certain news

The SNSC had previously banned publication of news about nuclear developments in the early 2010s hoping to hide nuclear activities from international watchdogs.