Vice President Jahangiri asks officials to be tolerant of criticism 

October 28, 2017

TEHRAN – Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri has asked his colleagues in the government to be tolerant of journalists’ criticism.

He made the remarks on Saturday during an opening ceremony for the 23rd Press Exhibition at Imam Khomeini Mosalla in Tehran.

He said that the government deems the independent press media useful for both itself and society.

“Press criticism of the government is one of our greatest resources. We should welcome it; and those who cannot manage to acknowledge criticism by the country’s official press will absolutely be going down the wrong path,” he added.

Jahangiri asked the Iranian press to disseminate the achievements the government has scored over the past few years and also to help the government tackle current impediments in order to raise hopes among the Iranian people. 

He noted that the government needs the press to struggle against the corruption at all levels.

The Press Exhibition was scheduled to be opened by President Hassan Rouhani on Friday, but the organizers postponed the opening ceremony one day, without giving an explanation for the delay. Nevertheless, Jahangiri apologized for the change and said that President Rouhani was unable to attend the opening ceremony due to “an overload of daily business.”

Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Abbas Salehi, as the main organizer of the Press Exhibition, also made a brief speech during the opening ceremony.

He said a society that cannot rely on the accuracy and aptness of news from their press is unsafe.

“A society that receives appropriate news from the overseas press and media is also unsafe. Consequently, our national media needs to be fortified on their fundamentals,” he added.

Representatives from over 900 newspapers, news agencies, press organizations, magazines and news websites are attending the eight-day event.

Dozens of international journalists and media experts have also been invited to attend a number of panel discussions arranged by the organizers.

Among the invitees are the co-editor of Newsroom in New Zealand, Tim Murphy; the Russian political scientist and expert on Iran, Vladimir Sazhin; and Azerbaijan’s Azertac’s special correspondent, Rabil Ketanov.

Photo: Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri speaks during the opening ceremony of the 23rd Press Exhibition at Imam Khomeini Mosalla in Tehran on October 28, 2017. (IRNA/Mohammad Babai)

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