French media demand Iran release reporter covering Mahsa Amini protests

© Atta Kenare, AFP

French media organisations have called for the release of a reporter on assignment to cover protests in Iran for French-German TV channel Arte which reported his arrest.

Vahid Shamsoddinnezhad, an Iranian national and resident in France, was arrested a month ago in Iranian Kurdistan, Arte said at the weekend.

He travelled there on assignment for the Keyi production company and Arte's newsroom to cover protests sparked by the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, it said.

Amini died in custody on September 16 after her arrest in Tehran for an alleged breach of Iran's strict dress rules for women.

Arte said Shamsoddinnezhad had handed a letter of accreditation issued by Arte and the details of his French press card to the Iranian authorities on September 24.

He then conducted two telephone interviews and a television report for Arte's news programme.

"He is now being held in Tehran and under investigation," Arte said.

Journalists' union SNJ called on the French government to obtain the release of the young reporter, who this year graduated from a journalism school in Lille, northern France.

"He was just doing his job," the union said.

Press freedom organisation Reporters Sans Frontieres said it was "fully mobilised" to obtain his release, as well as that of 43 other reporters it said were being held in Iran.

Iranian authorities said earlier Tuesday they had released eight journalists detained during the protests.


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