Harassment of the Press in Iran

Press Statement
Heather Nauert
Department Spokesperson
Washington, DC
March 15, 2018


This week, the UN Human Rights Council discussed the report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran.

The United States notes with concern the grave conditions facing the press in Iran as detailed in the UN Special Rapporteur’s report. The report says in part, “The Special Rapporteur has continued to receive reports of the arbitrary arrest, detention, and harassment of journalists, media workers, and their families, including during interviews conducted during missions.”

We also note in the Special Rapporteur’s report, the disturbing examples of harassment, arbitrary detention, travel bans, and surveillance by intelligence service operatives of some individuals and their families working for the Persian Service of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The report references an injunction by a Tehran court, banning 152 members of staff, former employees, and contributors from carrying out financial transactions in the country, citing “conspiracy against national security.”

These actions are unacceptable. The United States calls on the Iranian regime to respect its obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that guarantee the freedom of expression, including for members of the press.