Cleric seeks apology from Iran state TV for insulting Arabs

TEHRAN, Iran - An Iranian cleric said Friday the state-sanctioned broadcaster owes an apology to the country's Arab minority for insulting them in a recent program.

Semi-official Tasnim news agency quoted Ayatollah Mohsen Heidari, prayer leader of the Khuzestan provincial capital Ahwaz, as telling worshippers that state TV Channel 2 should apologize.

Heidari was apparently referring to a children's program in March that showed figurines of various minorities in Iran's provinces while ignoring Arabs. The majority of Iran's population is Persian but nearly half the 4 million population of Khuzestan are Arab. Heidari called it "omitting the Arab minority."

Since then, foreign-based media have reported protests in Khuzestan. Though Iranian media have remained silent, Iran's police chief Gen. Hossein Ashtari said last week there were no casualties in the oil-rich province from protests.

Ahvaz has been the scene of a series of deadly bombings and shootouts blamed on Arab separatists living in the region in recent decades. Last year, Iran said it arrested suspects behind a deadly attack on security forces in the city that killed two policemen and injured four others.

Unemployment is at nearly 15 per cent, higher than the country's average 12.6 per cent.


don-thompson
THOMPSON: Facts, not opinions, will bring Trump presidency to an end
  OPINION We’ve all seen it…or experienced it when we were little kids. The times you’re caught red handed…obviously guilty of something…and then you tell an obvious lie to try and cover

Top News