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July 11, 2001 05:43am
20 Flogged in Public for Selling 'Obscene' CDs
Source: Reuters

(TEHRAN) -- Twenty Iranians were flogged in a square in the capital Tehran Tuesday for selling ``obscene'' compact discs and videotapes, the official news agency IRNA reported.

The dealers had been convicted of selling the illegal material, usually pirated Western films and music videos by U.S.-based Iranian artists. The agency did not say how many lashes the men received.

Western-style tapes and CDs are illegal under Iran's strict censorship rules which ban images of women without an Islamic dress covering most of their body. But the material is widely available in the Islamic republic anyway.

IRNA said other dealers continued to sell similar material not far from the square as the flogging was being carried out.

Plainclothes police barred Iranian press photographers from taking pictures of the public flogging, it added.

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