News / Middle East

VOA to Re-Broadcast Documentary About Iranian Protester Neda

Multimedia

Audio

Iran last weekend blocked VOA's airing of a documentary by Antony Thomas, For Neda. VOA's Persian News Network (PNN) says viewers complained that television signals were jammed shortly after the film went on air Saturday, June 5.  PNN will re-broadcast the documentary on June 12.  For Neda tells the story of 26-year-old Neda Agha Soltan, whose death during post election violence in Tehran last year was widely broadcast over the internet. Among those who participated in the film was former CNN anchor, now human rights spokesperson, Rudi Bahktiar. Reporter Cecily Hilleary asked her about the young woman whose face became an international icon for reform in Iran.

Listen to the full interview:

Bahktiar: I remember the day I went on CNN, and they were interviewing me. And CNN was still blocking her eyes so that you couldn't see her face. They thought it was the right thing to do, obviously. But I urged them, actually, in that interview, I said, 'You should show Neda's eyes.  She's following the camera.  She knows what happened.  She's looking at the camera.'  And I think again that it is that fact-that video cuts to your heart because she's looking at you as she's dying, as if to say, 'I'm dying for nothing -- please don't let me die in vain."

Hilleary: You represent the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran.   Your group tracks human rights abuses.  Did Neda's death make any difference?  What is the situation today in Iran?

Bahktiar: The situation is as dire as it has ever been.  Iran is the number one country when it comes to the numbers of people executed yearly. That number has quadrupled under Ahmedinejad's power. And Iran is the number one country now when it comes to jailed journalists. There are one third of the world's journalists there who are imprisoned inside of Iran. One third!  And when you look at the statistics, when you see that Iran is one of the few countries that still executes juvenile delinquents once they come of age, it's one of the few countries where women are not equal, where minorities are prosecuted, you have Bahais in jail. The human rights situation is very dire. It is one of the worst in the world.  And of course Neda's death means a lot to our organization.  Every death does. Every violation does.  Every rape case means a lot to us.  So, although that has gained prominence, there are still, [right now], many people who are in jail for no reason at all, many people who have been denied access to lawyers.  They have not even been charged.

Hilleary: What do you hope that the film For Neda will achieve, and what is it that your group is looking to the international community to do?

Bahktiar: I'm hoping that the film would [a] show the average Iranian youth, what her family is like, what she wanted for herself.  The most important thing is that we would like the world to understand and know that no one has yet paid or answered for her death or the death, the incarceration and the rapes of many others. We have today put out a list of fifteen people we hold directly responsible for the violence that has ensued since [last] June.  We would like the international community to not allow them to travel freely and to put a hold on all their bank accounts all over the world.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More