Robert Tait

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Forced absence may make the heart grow fonder and, for me, reports about yesterday's parliamentary elections in Iran intensified what were already poignant emotions. I should, after all, have been there covering them.

As the Guardian's Tehran correspondent from March 2005, I had to make sense of Iran's convoluted and secretive political system in order to write about what passes for democracy in the Islamic Republic. The authorities had other ideas. Last December, I was forced to leave after they refused to renew my visa and residence permit - mischievously timed to expire less than three months before yesterday's poll. The culture and Islamic ministry, which monitors foreign journalists, apparently felt my reporting rendered me unworthy of covering what it considered to be the most important news event this year.…  Seguir leyendo »