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Iran Expels Newsman Over 'Tone' of Coverage


Iran Expels Newsman Over ‘Tone' of Coverage

From News Services

TEHRAN, Sept, 1—Australian journalist Chris de Kretser, who reported from here for the London Daily Telegraph, was ordered today to leave iran within a week.

The Iranian government and representatives of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's revolutionary regime have expelled at least eight Western journalists in recent weeks and instituted rigid restrictions for foreign correspondents in an attempt to control coverage of the turbulent country.

Those expelled include correspondents for the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, NBC, Financial Times, BBC and L'Express of Paris.

De Kretsei-, 32, said he was informed of the expulsion order by foreign press director Ali Behzadnia aftel' being summoned to the Ministry for National Guidance.

Pars, the official news agency, said De Kretser was ordered expelled for failing to apply for accreditation as a foreign correspondent. Besides writing for the Daily Telegraph de Kretser had written in recent weeks for The Washington Post. De Kretser, who has lived here for 10 years, said he was already accredited with the government as a journalist for Kayhan International, an English-language weekly, and had assumed that accreditation covered all his journalistic activities.

He said Behzadnia also expressed objection to “the general tone” of his coverage for the Telegraph and “dismay that anyone who has been here 10 years could think about the i'evoiuion in the way my writings intl iratccl.” 1-Ic said no mention was made of his coverage for The Washington Post. De Kretser also was barred from further work for Kayhan international, which resumed publication today after closing because of financial problems five months ago.

Meanwhile, there was little reaction today to a surprise midnight television address by Prime Minister Mehdi Bazargan in which Bazargan asked to be fired and indirectly challenged Khomeini to move from Qom to Tehran and take full control of the government.

Newspapers played down Bazargan's speech, emphasizing instead renewed warnings to the Kurdish rebels by Khomeini, which were echoed by Tehran leader Ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani.

Khomeini, who last month claimed himself Iran's supreme military commander, repeated his call for the army to crush the rebels. He was quoted as declaring that if army units did not move swiftly to quell the revolt “I will personally go to kurdistan.”

Meanwhile, Deputy Premier Mostafa Chamran, who is directing military operations in Kurdistan, reported that Iranian F4 Phantom jets and helicopter gunships, as well as artillery, repulsed attacks on government bases in Saqqez, Bastam, and around Baneh.

The government radio said Kurdish guerrillas attacked Bastarn when they learned that Chamran was there, but withdrew when the fighter-bombers flew strikes against the attackers' positions in Mahabacl, the largest city held by the rebels, the outlawed Kurdish Democratic Party urged residents to construct shelters.

Shops in the city were closed and guciri 11 as reportedly were clinging to renc'hes anti strengthening their fortifications against an expected assault by three armored columns, including more than 1,000 tanks, said to be moving toward the city.


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