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Anorak | Iran Kicks Out BBC Reporter Jon Leyne, And Neda Dies

Iran Kicks Out BBC Reporter Jon Leyne, And Neda Dies

by | 21st, June 2009

iranIRAN has turned on the BBC and kicked reporter Jon Leyne out of the country, and Neda dies:

“With regret, Jon Leyne, the BBC’s permananent correspondent in Tehran, has been asked to leave by the Iranian authorities. The BBC office remains open,” a brief statement from the broadcaster said.

Iran’s Fars news agency said Leyne had been ordered to leave the country within 24 hours and that he had been accused of “supporting the rioters”.

Not good news for Jon Leyne, but the troubles in Iran are being played out not on the BBC but on YouTube and Twitter. But what it needs is someone of Leyne’s calibre to make sense of it. As he says:

It is difficult to get any reliable picture of the scale of the protests in Tehran, let alone the whole country..

Make no mistake, President Ahmadinejad still has plenty of supporters. They turned out in large numbers in the victory rally he held in central Tehran on Sunday afternoon.

He has focused his rhetoric on foreign governments and the international media, blaming them for stirring up the trouble.

There is a danger now that the two sides could come to blows.

On YouTube, you can watch the death of “Neda”, a young Iranian woman allegedly shot in Tehran a Basij.

The video shows her dying in her father’s arms. To call it harrowing would be to indulge in tautology, the language of the tabloid press and the BBC. It cannot be anything but distressing – at least to the sane.

There is a graphic version of the death of Neda on Facebook – and anyone who has no idea what state-sponsored violence looks like – and who cannot imagine it – can tune in and gawp.

Looking will do nothing other than make you feel miserable. And so new media apes the old media. Look. Look. Look.

Neda is being turned into an iconic image for a some Iranians.



Posted: 21st, June 2009 | In: Key Posts, Reviews Comments (2) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink