Arrest of ‘blogfather’ confirmed in Tehran

December 30, 2008

Update on Hoder. Arrest of ‘blogfather’ confirmed in Tehran

Iran confirmed for the first time Tuesday that a well-known Iranian-Canadian blogger had been arrested last month and was facing charges of “insulting religious figures.”

The confirmation that Hossein Derakhshan, 33, was in custody came from Iran’s revolutionary court spokesman, Ali Reza Jamshidi, at a news conference in Tehran.

International human rights groups and media reports said Derakhshan, a former Toronto resident, was arrested on Nov. 1.

“His case is in a preliminary investigative stage at a revolutionary court and he is currently in incarceration at a jail in Tehran,” Jamishid said, giving no further explanation of the charges against Derakhshan.

In Iran, revolutionary courts handle national security matters.

Known as “the blogfather” for his pioneering efforts at helping Iranian bloggers post welblogs in the Persian language, Derakhshan was both an outspoken critic of the clerical regime in Tehran, and supportive of his homeland’s controversial nuclear program.

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