Aftab News

Launched during winter 2005, Aftab News (Sun News) is linked to former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, and, although the news site gives coverage to a multitude of topics its main focus is politics. During the 2005 presidential elections in Iran the news site became famous for openly criticizing the far right in Iranian politics, while also promoting Rafsanjani for president. Mehran Ghassemi, who passed away in 2008, was the previous editor in chief of Aftab.
      On February 14th, 2011 Aftab published what looked like a permit for legal street demonstrations marking the anniversary of the Green Movement on the 25th of Bahman (February 14th). The site’s manager later explained that it was under attack by hackers and that the so-called permit published by hackers was against all the political and media values of the news site. Aftab’s managing and technical directors were detained subsequently and released after being held for approximately four days. On different occasions, the government has filtered the site.