World News

Iran cancels foreign media accreditation

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran on Tuesday banned foreign media journalists from leaving their offices to cover protests on the streets of Tehran following the country’s disputed presidential elections.

The Culture Ministry said journalists could continue to work from their offices but that it was cancelling press accreditation for all foreign media.

“No journalist has permission to report or film or take pictures in the city,” a Culture Ministry official told Reuters.

The announcement came after three days of streets protests against Iran’s election results, during which at least seven people were reported to have been killed.

The demonstrations have riveted world attention on the world’s fifth biggest oil exporter which is locked in a nuclear dispute with the West.

Defeated presidential candidate Mirhossein Mousavi canceled a planned rally on Tuesday in a move he said aimed to protect his supporters’ lives. Backers of hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad planned a counter rally at the same site.

The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said Iranian authorities were “trying to stifle coverage of dissent.”

“This crude censorship must end immediately and all journalists, foreign and domestic, should be allowed to cover the historic news unfolding in Iran,” the CPJ said in a statement.

Editing by Jon Hemming