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Wed 9 Jul 2014 12:33 PM

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Iranian journalist sentenced to two years and 50 lashes

Blogger Marzieh Rasouli charged with spreading anti-government propaganda

Iranian journalist sentenced to two years and 50 lashes

Iranian journalist and blogger Marzieh Rasouli reported to Evin prison on Tuesday to serve a two-year sentence and receive 50 lashes over charges of spreading anti-government propaganda, sources close to the journalist said.

On Monday she wrote on her Twitter account that she was convicted of publishing "propaganda against the establishment and disruption of public order through participation in gatherings," in a case that dates back to January 2012.

Shortly after she was arrested that year, the Islamic Republic's state television accused her of having ties with foreigners, according to a Facebook page dedicated to her case.

Rasouli had previously worked for reformist daily newspapers, including Shargh and Etemad, where she covered arts, music and wrote book reviews.

The case has angered some Iranian journalists, who had hoped that the election of a moderate president, Hassan Rouhani, last year would bring greater political and cultural freedoms at home, a development that has yet to materialize.

Rouhani has been preoccupied with trying to shore up the Iranian economy, in part by pursuing a nuclear deal with the West to lift crushing financial sanctions, as well as civil wars raging in Tehran's regional allies Syria and Iraq.

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