Iran's international isolation deepened yesterday when the regime banned contact with more than 60 highly regarded Western
organisations which it accused of conspiring against the Islamic Republic.
The list includes the BBC, Voice of America and other media organisations that beam Farsi-language programmes into Iran, as well as think-tanks, academic institutions and leading non-governmental organisations from America and Europe. Having
any relation ... with those groups involved in the soft war [against Iran] is illegal and prohibited, the intelligence ministry said. Citizens should be alert to the traps of our enemies and co-operate ... in neutralising the plots of
foreigners and conspirators.
The list includes Yale University, the Soros and Ford foundations, the right-wing American Enterprise Institute, the liberal Brookings Institution, Human Rights Watch and USAid. Some, but not all of the organisations, have worked with universities
or civil society institutions in Iran — bodies that tend to be hostile to the regime.
Four British organisations are named: the BBC, Wilton Park and Menas Associates, along with the British Centre for Democratic Studies — which appears not to exist.
The regime has repeatedly accused the BBC of being part of a British plot against it. It has expelled the organisation's Tehran correspondent and regularly jams the BBC Persian satellite television signal.
Update: European satellite company censors BBC's Persian TV
17th January 2010. Based on article
Iran is facing mounting international protests about its jamming of the BBC's Persian TV service (PTV) after the channel – which has millions of viewers and is hugely popular with opposition supporters – was taken off a satellite owned by Europe's
The BBC said today it was actively supporting a formal complaint to the International Telecommunication Union, a UN-affiliated body, about deliberate interference from Iran. The ITU confirmed it had received representations from
regulators in France, home to Eutelsat, owner of the Hotbird 6 satellite, which transmitted PTV until the end of last month.
The German state broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, said it too would protest about interference with its Persian-language radio broadcasts. Voice of America Persian TV programmes have also been jammed.
The BBC said it was telling viewers how to adjust their satellite dishes to receive programmes via two other satellites that are out of range of Iranian jamming.
Eutelsat says PTV was removed from Hotbird 6 in agreement with the BBC, though sources close to the affair say the operator caved in to commercial and legal pressures from other customers broadcasting on the same transponder. Another
Eutelsat satellite, Hotbird 8, provides capacity to Iranian state media channels, including English-language Press TV, which has offices in London.