Iranian Reformist Journalist Accused of Contacts with US Military Officer

Published May 21st, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Iranian reformist journalist Akbar Ganji had "illegal links" with a US military officer in Turkey, the judiciary said in a statement Sunday explaining why he was arrested a month ago. 

"The reason of Ganji's arrest is not the things he said ... but his illegal links with a US officer with NATO and certain important members of the counter-revolutionary opposition in Turkey," said the statement published in Sunday's press. 

It did not elaborate. 

Ganji, a thorn in the side of Iran's conservatives, was taken Tehran's Evin prison on April 22 after a hearing before the press court over articles he wrote about the 1998 killings of several intellectuals and opposition leaders. 

He implicated then president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani in the murders in articles he published just before February's parliamentary elections, in which Rafsanjani was a candidate. 

The paper he edited, Sobh-e Emruz, was one of the reformist titles suspended by the press court in April. 

Editors of 17 daily, weekly and monthly papers across the political spectrum have been summoned by the press courts, following "complaints lodged by legal and personal entities", the official news agency IRNA reported Saturday – TEHRAN (AFP)  

© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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