Iranian authorities have arrested the editor-in-chief of two newspapers after publishing reports critical to the government, amid an intensifying crackdown on media in the country.
More than 60 journalists have been detained since the anti-government protests erupted across Iran in the middle of September. Some of them have been released. Others have been summoned, threatened and had their electronic equipment seized.
Davood Bagheri was arrested on December 25 when armed forces raided his house in Tehran, Emtedad news channel reported on December 28.
Bagheri is a member of Rah Mellat political party’s central council and the editor-in-chief of Jameeh Farda and Attar Yas.
He has published reports criticizing the political and economic performances of the government and the Islamic Republic’s response to the ongoing wave of nationwide protests.
The Iranian authorities have cracked down hard on the wave of protests sparked by the September 16 death of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, in the custody of morality police.
The protest movement has grown to become one of the biggest threats to the clerical regime since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
At least 469 people have been killed by security forces on demonstrators, including 63 children, according to one human rights group.
At least 18,000 others have been detained. Dozens have been handed capital punishment or are facing charges that carry a death sentence. Iran carried out the first two executions earlier this month, triggering international condemnation.