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Iran lifts ban on CNN

Tehran, Jan 17, IRNA-Cable News Network, which was banned Monday from broadcasting its programs in Iran, on Tuesday was allowed to resume its activities.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in a letter sent to the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance earlier today, asked that the ban on the TV channel be lifted.

The ban imposed on CNN on Monday said that the network and its reporters were no longer authorized to operate in Iran after they misquoted and/or distorted President Ahmadinejad's remarks at a press conference on Saturday.

At the press conference, President Ahmadinejad stressed that Iran had the right to produce nuclear energy but was misquoted in CNN programs as saying "The use of nuclear weapons is Iran's right."

According to government spokesman Gholam-Hossein Elham, President Ahmadinejad wrote to Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad-Hossein Safar Harandi asking him to lift the ban on CNN's broadcasts.

"We believe that accurate dissemination of news and information is necessary for political growth and awareness as well as effective interaction among nations in today's world," said the president in hi sletter. And the media are the main sources of disseminating useful information," added the president in his letter.

"Taking into account the CNN's apology, we are asking that the channel be allowed to resume its activities, although we maintain the view that the news it broadcast was contrary to professional ethics of journalism which requires truthful dissemination of news in the interest of all," he said.

Pointing out that world public opinion was mature enough to distinguish truth from error, the president further said, "Ensuring lasting peace for all mankind based on justice and spirituality is the goal of the Iranian government and nation."

"We believe that what the present world needs is reason, ethics, justice and spirituality and not biological, chemical and atomic weapons or arsenals. This is the very path which the great Iranian nation is treading."

... Payvand News - 1/17/06 ... --

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