1 February: EU High Representative Catherine Ashton Tuesday said she is "extremely worried about the growing harassment and persecution of journalists and internet bloggers in Iran." Ashton repeated the EU call on Iran to introduce a moratorium

Ashton noted in a statement that in the past few weeks, security forces have reportedly arrested many journalists. "I call on the Iranian authorities to release these journalists and restore their rights to freely communicate their views. I am equally concerned about the continued interference with and censoring of the internet," said the EU foreign policy chief.

"Iran has gone far beyond filtering access and content," she said and pointed out that three bloggers as well as one web developer have recently been sentenced to death on charges of "spreading corruption on earth". Ashton repeated the EU call on Iran to review these sentences, to halt all pending executions and to introduce a moratorium on the death penalty.

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