The National Press Club calls on Iranian leaders to immediately release Washington Post journalist Jason Rezaian, who has been detained for more than six months with unknown charges against him. “This confinement must end,” National Press Club President John Hughes said. “It is sickening that Iran would jail a journalist who was only trying to inform the world fairly and impartially about happenings in the country.”
The Washington Post in its Jan. 29 edition included an account (http://wapo.st/1tpn8JY) about the confinement of Rezaian, who is the organization’s bureau chief in Tehran. Post Executive Editor Martin Baron said in the article that he hasn’t heard any accounting of the charges against Rezaian, who has not been given access to an attorney since his confinement began July 22.
“Iran only hurts itself by not letting reporters do their jobs,” Hughes said. “The Washington Post provides vital information to leaders in the nation’s capital and around the world. Iran must show the world that it welcomes fair and open reporting about its activities.”
A year-end review by the National Press Club’s Press Freedom Committee found that press freedom and government transparency in 2014 “regressed more than it progressed.” (http://bit.ly/1ESmeXU) Reporters Without Borders recorded 66 journalist deaths last year, 119 kidnappings and 178 imprisonments.
The National Press Club is the world’s leading professional organization for journalists. Founded in 1908, it is located in Washington, D.C. Through its Press Freedom Committee, the National Press Club speaks out on behalf of press freedom and transparency worldwide.