President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Wednesday that western media were inciting against Iran and were attempting to influence public opinion in a "dishonest fashion”.
During a speech delivered at the offices of the state-controlled IRNA news agency in honor of “Journalist’s Day”, the president said western news agencies were portraying the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in a distorted manner.
“The western media are using words that present the oppressor as the oppressed and the oppressed as the oppressor,” he said.
Speaking just two days after local authorities temporarily shut down the moderate newspaper Sharq for the third time after it published an interview with a lesbian poet of Iranian descent who currently resides in Canada, Ahmadinejad said the reporters in the Islamic Republic were “brave”, adding that they were carrying out a “holy mission” to help the Iranian public “choose correctly”.
Sharq’s editors said the paper was closed due to the recent criticism it had leveled against Ahmadinejad.