Ayatollah Khamenei & Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Reporters Without Borders has once again ranked Iran as “one of the world’s biggest prisons for journalists” on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, May 3.

The press rights group stated today that “the Islamic Republic of Iran has both Supreme Leader Khamenei and President Ahmadinejad, who – despite their rivalry – agree on gagging the media.”

Iran has been ranked at 175, or fifth from the bottom, on the World Press Freedom Index rankings.

The statement also reports that: “Freelance journalists, a growing number of whom are covering wars, have paid a high price in the past four months.”

The Reporters Without Borders statement pays tribute to the efforts of these citizen journalists.

The press freedom organization reports that it has decided to accompany the new governments formed in the Arab springs “during their progress towards democracy.” Reporters Without Borders has opened an office in Tunisia and is in the process of opening another in Libya, reportedly to “encourage the government’s efforts to build a free and pluralist press.”

Reporters Without Borders acknowledges, however, that “the Arab springs have fallen far short of keeping all their promises, and we must remain on our guard, on the one hand, for manipulative attempts by new governments to brand protest movements as ‘terrorist’ and, on the other, for the anti-freedom tendencies of certain protest groups.”