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BBC Staff To testify At United Nations About Harassment By Iranian Authorities

The British Broadcasting Corporation revealed that journalists associated with its Persian service will for the first time testify at the United Nations over what the network described as the “persecution and harassment” of its staff by Iran. The BBC said its decision comes after Tehran “completely ignored” complaints related to abuse by Iranian authorities, which the company claims has worsened in recent months. “We are not the only media organization to have been harassed or forced to compromise when dealing with Iran,” BBC director-general Tony Hall wrote in a statement. “In truth, this story is much wider: it is a story about fundamental human rights.” In response, an Iranian official dismissed the accusations as “racist” and “dictated in Washington, France and London and other places.” The BBC’s Farsi-language outlet was barred from operating in Iran after the country’s disputed 2009 presidential election, and last year an Iranian court froze the assets of more than 150 people connected to the Persian service, which consists of radio and satellite television shows. The BBC says the programming reaches some 18 million people weekly.

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