The Press Law

Press Law (Ratified on March 19, 1986) And Its Executive By-law (January 31, 1987) With amendments of April 18, 2000

This IHRDC translation of the Press Law includes the 2000 amendments in red.

Note: The Press Law was amended in 2009; the translation of those amendments is pending and will be posted to this page upon completion. 

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

"Let us swear by the pen and whatever is written..." (Holy Quran)

Publications and news media shall enjoy freedom of expression provided what they publish does not violate Islamic principles or the civil code. The details shall be outlined by the law. (Article 24 of the Constitution)

Chapter 1: Definition of the Press

Article 1: In this law, "press" means publications which are published regularly and under a permanent name, date and serial numbers on different subjects such as news, commentary, as well as social, political, economic, agricultural, cultural, religious, scientific, technical, military, and artistic matters, sports, etc.

Note 1: Extraordinary editions shall be published only by such publications which are published regularly.

Note 2: A publication that is publish without obtaining a license from the Press Supervisory Board is not subject to the Press Law and will be subject to regular laws.

Note 3: All electronic publications are subject to this law.

Chapter 2: Mission of the Press

Article 2: The following constitute the objectives of the press in the Islamic Republic of Iran:
a. To enlighten public opinion and increase the level of their knowledge on one or several topics mentioned in Article 1.
b. To advance the objectives outlined in the Constitution of the Islamic Republic.
c. To endeavor to negate the drawing up of false and divisive lines, or, pitting different groups of the community against each other by practices such as dividing people by race, language, customs, local traditions, etc.
d. To campaign against manifestations of imperialistic culture (such as extravagance, dissipation, debauchery, love of luxury, spread of morally corrupt practices, etc.) and to propagate and promote genuine Islamic culture and sound ethical principles.
e. To preserve and strengthen the policy of "Neither East nor West". Note: Each publication should at least enforce one of the above goals and such a goal must in no way be in conflict with the other goals specified above or with the principles of the Islamic Republic

Chapter 3: Rights of the Press

Article 3: The press have the right to publish the opinions, constructive criticisms, suggestions and explanations of individuals and government officials for public information while duly observing the Islamic teachings and the best interest of the community.
Note: Constructive criticism should be based on logic and reason and void of insult, humiliation and detrimental effects.

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