Leaders of Iran

Friday, December 10, 2004

Iran names conservative as new state broadcast boss. 24/05/2004. ABC News Online

Iran names conservative as new state broadcast boss. 24/05/2004. ABC News Online: "Iran names conservative as new state broadcast boss
Iran's supreme leader Ali Khamenei has appointed another conservative to head the state radio and television broadcaster, the official IRNA news agency announced on Sunday.

Outgoing chief Ali Larijani, who is widely regarded as a possible candidate for the state presidency in polls due next year, will be replaced by his deputy Ezzatollah Zarghami, IRNA said.

A veteran of the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps as well as the 1979-80 seizure of the US embassy by radical students, Ezzatollah Zarghami is regarded as a Larijani loyalist.

In more than a decade in post, the outgoing Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting chief oversaw a massive expansion of the state media empire.

An Arabic-language satellite station joined six domestic channels as the regime sought to put its message across to neighbouring Iraq in the run-up to last year's US-led invasion.

The state broadcaster has also moved into print, launching the Jam-e Jam daily at a such a large discount against its competitors that it has rapidly become one of the country's biggest-selling newspapers.

The activism of Larijani's tenure has made IRIB a regular butt for criticism from reformist supporters of President Mohammad Khatami who accuse the state broadcaster of heavy bias towards their conservative opponents.

--AFP"

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