Majid Tavakoli

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

Iranian security forces arrested columnist and commentator Majid Tavakoli on September 22, 2022, from his home in Tehran. 

Tavakoli is a commentator on local news for a variety of news websites. A source familiar with his case who spoke to CPJ on the condition of anonymity due to fear of reprisal, said the journalist commented on national protests on social media.

Protests began in Iran following the September 16 death of a 22-year-old woman, Mahsa Amini, after morality police arrested her for allegedly violating the country’s conservative dress law. 

According to the source, Tavakoli was beaten and arrested in the presence of his family, including his young child, after security forces raided his home after midnight. 

The source said Tavakoli is detained in Greater Tehran Central Penitentiary. He met with his wife once and has not yet been officially charged. 

CPJ was unable to determine the status of the journalist’s health in prison. 

Tavakoli was previously imprisoned in 2007 when he was editor of the Amirkabir University of Technology student newspaper Khat-e Sefer.

Authorities arrested dozens of journalists as the protests over Amini’s death spread across the country. Several of them were later released on bail. 

CPJ emailed Iran’s mission to the United Nations in late 2022 for comment on the cases of imprisoned Iranian journalists but received no response.