Posts tagged “Iran”

Supreme leader tweetings infuriate Iran’s persecuted bloggers

“A Twitter account believed to belong to Iran’s supreme leader has triggered controversy among Iranians whose own access to social networking websites remains blocked.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the man who has the final word in Iran, has come under intense criticism from Iran’s many bloggers for launching a crackdown on Twitter and Facebook while his office apparently runs a Twitter account under Khamenei_ir.”

From The Guardian

Derakhshan Released On Short Furlough On Unprecedented $1.5 Million Bail

“An informed source told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that Hossein Derakhshan was released last night on the unprecedented bail amount of $1.5 million. Derakhshan had requested a prison furlough after a lower court sentenced him to 19.5 years in prison in September. The informed source told the Campaign that Derakhshan’s family is immensely happy to see him released and hopes that the upcoming appeals court ruling could keep him from returning to prison.”

From International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran

The Stuxnet worm at war in Iran

Strong evidence proves that the Stuxnet worm has infected computers in Iran’s nuclear program. On Monday, diplomats and nuclear officials announced that the nuclear program has been shortly stalled, perhaps as a result of the disturbance. Although attribution cannot be determined at this point, it is obvious that the current controversial speculation has caught the world’s attention.

The Globe and Mail talks to the Information Warfare Monitor chief investigators Ron Deibert and Rafal Rohozinski for their take on the cyber attack.

From The Globe and Mail

Worm Was Perfect for Sabotaging Centrifuges

“Experts dissecting the computer worm suspected of being aimed at Iran’s nuclear program have determined that it was precisely calibrated in a way that could send nuclear centrifuges wildly out of control.

Their conclusion, while not definitive, begins to clear some of the fog around the Stuxnet worm, a malicious program detected earlier this year on computers, primarily in Iran but also India, Indonesia and other countries.

From The New York Times

Persecution of bloggers continues, now with harsher sentences

“Reporters Without Borders condemns the increasing severity of the Iranian regime’s persecution of bloggers. One, Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, was given a 15-year jail sentence 10 days ago while another, Mehdi Khazali, the editor of the website Baran, was arrested two days ago.

‘Like journalists, bloggers have been treated for months as if they are enemies of the regime,” Reporters Without Borders said. “But the authorities have now started to impose much harsher sentences on them. Bloggers involved in censorship circumvention are being particularly targeted as they help their fellow citizens to gain access to banned information.’ ”

From Reporters Sans Frontieres

Derakhshan case: When keeping quiet does not work

“The severity of the nearly 20-year jail sentence handed down to veteran Iranian blogger Hossein Derakhshan, left, has shocked many exiled Iranian journalists and bloggers with whom I’ve spoken. It’s also reinforced their belief that the best way to help jailed colleagues is not through quiet diplomacy but by making a lot of noise.

Derakhshan’s case made headlines last month when human rights groups reported that prosecutors were seeking the death penalty for the writer, dubbed the “blogfather” of Farsi blogging, on a raft of antistate charges. In the end, a Revolutionary Court sentenced the Iranian-Canadian dual national to nineteen and a half years in prison. His family and lawyer learned of the verdict through the news media.”

From Committee to Protect Journalists

In Sign of Discord, Iran Blocks Web Sites of Some Clerics

“TEHRAN, Iran — The web sites of two senior clerics have been blocked by government censors, a possible sign of a hardening political divide at the highest level of Iran’s religious establishment.

The web sites of the clerics, Grand Ayatollah Yusuf Sanei and Grand Ayatollah Asadollah Bayat-Zanjani, who are both “sources of emulation,” the highest clerical rank in Shiite Islam, were first reported blocked by news sites linked with Iran’s political opposition movement on Sunday. The official site of a third top cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali-Mohammad Dastgheib, was reported blocked early last month.

While there was no official announcement that the sites had been blocked, Internet users who attempted to access them on Monday were automatically redirected to a standard Iranian government filtering page which offers links to government-authorized web sites such as marriage advice sites, state-run news services and the official web site of Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.”

From The New York Times

Longest-ever sentence for Iranian blogger – 19 and a half years

“Reporters Without Borders is outraged by the extremely long jail sentence that has just been passed on Iranian blogger and journalist Hossein Derakhshan. He has been sentenced to 19 and a half years in prison followed by a five-year ban on political and journalistic activities. He has also been fined the equivalent of more than 30,000 euros.

“Such a long jail term has never before been imposed on a blogger in Iran and is indicative of a desire to make an example out of Derakhshan,” Reporters Without Borders said. “He is the victim of political rivalry within the government and the case against him was fabricated. We urge President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to intercede personally in order to obtain his release without delay.”

From Reporters Sans Frontieres

Iran Considers Death Penalty for Blogger, Family Says

“Updated | 4:09 p.m. Hossein Derakhshan, an influential Iranian-Canadian blogger who was arrested after he returned to Iran nearly two years ago, could be sentenced to death by a court in Tehran, according to his family.

Cyrus Farivar, an Iranian-American journalist, reported on Monday that a member of the detained blogger’s family ‘has confirmed to me that he is awaiting a sentence in his trial in Tehran, and that the prosecutor is seeking the death penalty.'”

From The New York Times