Newsweek Demands Release of Canadian Journalist Held in Iran
Newsweek magazine is demanding the release of a Canadian journalist held in Iran.
The CBC reported that Maziar Bahari was taken by a group of men believe to be "security officials" on Sunday from the apartment he share with his mother, according to Newsweek foreign editor Nisid Hajari.
It is unclear who is holding Bahari.
Hajari said Bahari's mother told Newsweek the people who took her son "didn't clearly identify themselves and they didn't say when he would be back."
A laptop and several videotapes were also seized from the apartment by authorities, Hajari said.
At least 24 journalists and bloggers are also known to have been arrested in Iran since more than a week ago when Iranians began protesting the official results of the presidential election.
[q url="http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2009/06/22/iran-tehran-journalist-detain-bahari-newsweek489.html?ref=rss"]Bahari, who is originally from Tehran, but moved to Canada in 1988 and completed a degree at Concordia University in Montreal and keeps a home in Toronto, has been working in Iran for Newsweek for more than a decade, the publication said in a statement posted on its website.
The Canadian government has now stepped up, demanding to have access to Bahari. Hajari told the CBC that the Canadian Embassy in Tehran has been helpful in trying to locate the journalist.
On Monday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement calling on the Iranian government to "release all political prisoners and journalists — including Canadians — who have been unjustly detained, to allow Iranian and foreign media to report freely on these historic events, and to conduct a full and transparent investigation into allegations of fraud in the presidential election."
Iranian has imposed strict regulations on foreign media by expelling and detaining journalists and forbidding coverage from the streets of Tehran.