Global journalists rally behind Maziar Bahari

More than 100 prominent journalists from 47 countries sent a petition to the Iranian government today calling for the immediate release of Maziar Bahari, Newsweek’s Tehran correspondent, who has been held without charge in an Iranian jail since June 21. Compiled by CPJ, Index on Censorship, and Canadian Journalists for Free Expression, the petition was faxed to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s justice minister, Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi, in Tehran.

“Journalists the world over are standing behind their colleague Maziar Bahari,” CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon said in a press release announcing the petition. “These journalists come from many different countries and many different perspectives. But they agree on one point: Maziar Bahari is a renowned reporter and filmmaker who was doing his job when he was arrested and detained without charge. He should be released, but at a minimum he is entitled to basic due process, including access to a lawyer.”

With signatures from respected journalists around the world, including Christiane Amanpour, Ahmed Rashid, Mariane Pearl, Adam Michnik, and Ali Bulaç, the petition urges the justice minister to intervene in Bahari’s case and see that he is released immediately and allowed to return to work. Bahari, 42, was detained in late June along with numerous other local and international journalists amid post-election protests.