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Republic of Iran Broadcasting head scoffs at Parliament report, urges Judiciary probe

President of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) Ali Larijani has scoffed at a recent report by a special Parliament inspection commission on the organization's financial offenses, and has urged the Judiciary to open a probe into the issue, IRNA reported from Tehran.

The Persian-language daily `Yass-E No' quoted Larijani on Saturday as calling the report "cursory", stressing that it had been politically motivated.

Larijani, addressing Iran's Fourth Radio Festival, rejected all the Parliament's charges of financial misconduct, and vowed to follow the issue through the Judiciary.

"The IRIB staffers are no thieves, and are servants of the nation," `Yass-E No' quoted him as saying.

"You are dealing with a cultural institution rather than an `irrigation department'. What you claim must be acceptable, and one should not treat all issues through political viewpoints."

The Parliament Special Inspection Commission on IRIB's Revenues and Expenses in a report on Wednesday stressed that the organization had committed gross financial offenses totalling as much as Rls 525 billion (about Dlrs 656 million) in several cases.

The commission stressed that the report had been based on "very limited" data obtained from other institutions, as well as a few banking accounts of the IRIB. It also lashed out at the organization for failing to cooperate with commission investigations.

The inspection commission furthermore urged the Parliament Presiding Board to sue the IRIB for flouting Article 201 of the Parliament Bylaws, which stipulates that state organizations must cooperate with its probes.

Larijani said it was not fair of the Parliament to prepare "cursory" reports against the IRIB "in return for all the burden it has undergone" to serve the country.

"Of course, we are not worried about such claims, and have worked under more difficult situations," he said.

"These will all pass like a dream. But I urge the Judiciary to probe the case to clarify the facts. I, myself, will follow up the issue to reveal the truth."

... Payvand News - 5/10/03 ... --

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