CPJ urges Iran to release journalist Najaf Mehdipour

Iranian authorities must immediately release journalist Najaf Mehdipour, known as Kaveh, and stop arbitrarily arresting members of the press, the Committee to Protect Journalists said.

The CPJ (Committee to Protect Journalists) urged Iran to release journalist Najaf Mehdipour, known as Kaveh. 

On May 18, authorities in the eastern city of Darreh Shahr, in Ilam province, arrested Mehdipour, a freelance journalist, at his home and the following day transferred him to a local prison, according to reports by the exile-run Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) and SedayehZendani, a website that covers detained journalists and activists in Iran.

Those reports said the reason for the journalist’s arrest had not been disclosed.

“Iranian authorities must free journalist Najaf Mehdipour immediately and unconditionally, and cease locking up members of the press for unspecified alleged crimes,” said CPJ Middle East and North Africa Senior Researcher Justin Shilad, in New York. “If Iran wants its judicial system to have even a modicum of credibility, it cannot continue to imprison journalists without disclosing the charges.”

Mehdipour was previously imprisoned from July 6, 2019, to February 25, 2020, after being convicted of “insulting the supreme leader” and “spreading propaganda against the regime.”