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Iranian Judiciary Shuts Another Reformist Newspaper

10 August 2004 -- Iran's hard-line judiciary has shut down another reformist newspaper, "Nasim-i Saba," run by a political ally of President Hojatoleslam Mohammad Khatami.

The state news agency IRNA quoted the managing editor of the paper, Hojatoleslam Rasul Montajabnia, as saying the courts had ordered the Islamic Republic's reformist-run Culture Ministry to withdraw the newspaper's permission to publish.

He said the matter was apparently related to an unclear complaint by a former managing editor. Montajabnia is a prominent member of the Militant Clerics Association, the left-leaning party of President Khatami.

In recent years, the Iranian judiciary has maintained a concerted crackdown on the press, closing down at least 100 publications -- most of them pro-reform.