Newsweek's Maziar Bahari, who has covered Iran for the magazine for a decade, was taken into custody by Iranian officials during an early morning raid of his home. His captors also seized his computer and several videotapes.
We are deeply concerned about Mr. Bahari's detention. As a longtime NEWSWEEK reporter he has worked hard to be balanced in his coverage of Iran. We see no reason why he should be held by the authorities. We respectfully ask that they release him as soon as possible.
Newsweek notes that there have been at least 20 journalists and bloggers arrested by the Iranian government in their recent crackdown on the reporting of strife within that country. Tehran Bureau lists many of them, as well as a number of politicians and academics who've been captured, in this post on their website.
Interestingly, Maziar Bahari was interviewed by Jason Jones in a Daily Show segment that aired on Thursday night. He is also the author of a book on Iran's social transformation being brought about by its burgeoning population of young intellectuals, something that probably didn't sit well with the country's hardline religious leadership.