Journalists’ Day celebrated in Tehran

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SHAFAQNA - The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance celebrated Journalists’ Day during a ceremony at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall on Saturday.

A large number of journalists, Culture Minister Ali Jannati and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad-Javad Zarif attended the celebration. 

“Our experience indicates that suffocation in the media has a direct connection with dictatorship, a society whose media lacks joy and cannot say what it must, moves toward dictatorship,” Jannati said in his speech. 

“One of the major mottos of the Islamic Republic of Iran is ‘Independence and Freedom’ and the variety and plurality of the press and the freedom of speech have been stressed in our constitutional law. This government has tried to implement this part of the constitutional law perfectly,” he added. 

Jannati also talked about the expectations of the public sector from the media and said, “We expect the media to consider freedom of speech as responsible freedom and carry out their job with responsibility. We have no red lines for the press and the media in our constitutional law. However religious standards and national security need to be observed.” 

Next, Zarif expressed his congratulations and talked about the difficult days they experienced during the recent nuclear talks in Vienna. 

“We went through tough negotiations and experienced difficult days, but the Iranian media who were with us had even harder days,” Zarif said. 

“As we reached the last days of the talks, we were able to provide more information to people with the help of the media,” he said. 

Zarif called it a great change and a huge achievement, however he added, “I also agree with the criticism that during the negations and due to certain restrictions we were unable to have good interaction with the media, but then again we had a better situation with the help of the media at the end.” 

Afterwards, Deputy Culture Minister for Press Affairs Hossein Entezami in his short speech reiterated the necessity of creating an opportunity for journalists to gain better access to education and help improve their social welfare. 

Separate congratulatory messages poured in from different high-ranking officials to celebrate Iran’s Journalists’ Day over the past several days. 

President Hassan Rouhani said that he believes the success of his government of “prudence and hope” is indebted to the understanding and sympathy of the journalists and called promotion of the journalists’ status a great responsibility. 

“Achieving consistent development and reinforcing the social base when surrounded by modern communications in today’s complicated world is possible only through informed and sympathetic minds and responsible people,” president said in his message. 

“Journalists who bear the responsibility to transfer correct and up-to-date information and report the truth to people are the conscious minds and the open eyes of the society,” the message continued. 

Ali-Akbar Salehi, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, in his meetings with the journalists, said that protecting national resources and authority is one of the major duties of the journalists. 

He said that the country’s vigilance and promotion of anti-colonialism are indebted to the efforts carried out by the journalists. 

Ali Jannati also in his previous message released by the ministry expressed his congratulations to the journalists, especially those active in the social arena. 

“The variety in this field has made the journalists bear a lot of pressure. Sometimes a journalist is forced to cover several topics simultaneously, each of which requires a wide range of information and research,” the message said. 

“Consequently, the variety and large volume of news reporting in the social areas has become more specialized and the media need to accept this trend and make good provision for it,” the message added. 

Head of Iran’s Department of Environment Masumeh Ebtekar also paid tribute to the martyred journalists of the country and said they created better conditions for today with their patience, resistance and sacrifice.

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