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World’s Press Calls On Iran to Release Washington Post Journalist

The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and the World Editors Forum have protested to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani against the continued detention of journalist Jason Rezaian and have called for his immediate release.

On 6th December, prosecutors brought unspecified charges against Mr Rezaian, Tehran bureau chief of the Washington Post, who has been detained since his arrest on 22 July.

In a letter addressed to President Rouhani, WAN-IFRA urged the Iranian leader to make public any charges against Mr Rezaian and called for them to be immediately dropped should they be based on his work as a journalist.

“We respectfully remind you that jailing a journalist for carrying out his duties constitutes a clear breach of the right to freedom of expression,” the letter said. “We urge you to respect the work of journalists, local and foreign, and to ensure that in future your government fully observes its international obligations to freedom of expression.”

Mr Rezaian was arrested with his wife Yeganeh Salehi, also a journalist, and an unnamed photojournalist and his wife. Three of those arrested were eventually released on bail, but Mr Rezaian was detained in Evin prison for more than four months without charge.

Prosecutors have reportedly not allowed the lawyer hired by Mr Rezaian's family to defend him, to speak with him, or to review his case file.

Click here to read WAN-IFRA’s full letter.

Click here for more information on WAN-IFRA’s press freedom work.