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Iranian state media has reported that five Iranian people working for the Persian television service of the BBC have been arrested.

The reports said the reporters were arrested on September 17, while making a documentary without authorization from the foreign press department of the culture ministry.

Minister Mohammad Hosseini confirmed the arrest and said the intelligence service would soon provide more details.

The BBC's Persian-language service is banned in Iran but is available via satellite.

The government accuses it of broadcasting negative reports on Iran and fomenting unrest.

compiled from agency reports