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29 November 2023

Jail term confirmed for Ahmadinejad aide


President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's media adviser Ali Akbar Javanfekr has had a six-month jail term upheld on appeal on one of several charges against him, the chief prosecutor for Iran said Monday.

"He was sentenced to jail after the appeals process, and the duration of six months was confirmed for this person," Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejei said, according to the Fars news agency.

He did not say what charge earned the prison sentence, but added that Javanfekr had "more than one case before the judiciary." Investigation into the cases was "ongoing," he said.

Javanfekr's lawyer, Qahreman Shojaee, confirmed the jail term to the official news agency IRNA.

He said the sentence had to do with "the case of the magazine," apparently referring to an accusation that Javanfekr permitted a state magazine to run articles commenting critically on the headscarf and dress Iranian women are obliged to wear.

As well as being Ahmadinejad's adviser, Javanfekr runs IRNA and a state press group that prints several newspapers and magazines.

Last month, a court sentenced Javanfekr to a year in prison and a five-year ban on him undertaking media and political activities for allegedly insulting supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on his website in April 2011.

He was appealing that sentence.

Javanfekr has been targeted by hardline judges and other elements in Iran's regime who have been waging a long-running battle against Ahmadinejad and his entourage, whom they see as trying to undermine the religious principles of their Islamic administration.

The intensity of the conflict has intensified ahead of March 2 legislative elections.