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Back in Iran and on trial

A year after the bloody crackdown on Iranian protesters, the trials begin.

“I wanted to work and have never been political,” Saeedi said. “I was arrested for my work and I need to continue working.”

Saeedi swapped a comfortable house in Tehran and a high-visibility job working as the picture editor of a major news agency for a small apartment in a dust-choked street in Kabul’s Shahr-e Now district. The area is patrolled by Kalashnikov-toting soldiers and ringed with cement blast walls, barbed wire and police roadblocks searching for incoming suicide bombers.

Now almost permanently hunched over his laptop when not out chasing car-bomb aftermaths, Saeedi fields calls from media colleagues, monitors international news coverage of Afghanistan, and arranges stories to shoot in the neighborhoods of Kabul.

“I’ve become a war photographer,” he said, sipping from a cup of tea as he sought to arrange access to the Kangoral Valley shortly after the Taliban seized it from retreating American forces in April. “We’re the people that are sent in to do the most dangerous, most risky work.”

When not dealing with war zones where few Western photographers would ever dream of venturing, Saeedi worries about his impending court date in Tehran. His trial date has been set close to the one-year anniversary of last June’s elections which is widely expected to become a flash point for opposition sympathizers. 

“If the law were to be respected, I would be proven innocent because I did nothing but my duty as a photojournalist,” Saeedi said in Kabul. “In the way that I photographed [opposition figure Mir-Hossein] Mousavi’s campaign I also photographed Ahmadinejad’s.”

“Why should I be judged for photographing Mousavi but not Ahmadinejad?”

 

GlobalPost coverage on the protests: 

'Don't the Basij have parents?'

A farewell to Tehran

Protester vs. protester in Iran

The global view: GlobalPost correspondents from around the world weigh in on Iran.

Snapshots from Tehran's Revolution Square

Unrest continues in Iran: The third day of protests in Tehran, and news agencies come under pressure.

Tehran's wild nights of protest: Iran's election aftermath — The view from the streets of Tehran

'New' dawn breaks over Iran: Mousavi supporters cry foul as news of Ahmadinejad's win spreads.

Iran's elections: The view from the highway — Will the country vote to keep conservative leader or choose reform candidate?

Analysis:

Iranian rockers find their voice

Oil, unrest and some very nervous Saudis. Interview: Middle East analyst Rachel Bronson sorts it all out.

Revolution, Tiananmen, or something else? Opinion: Though Ahmadinejad will likely have a second term, this election won't soon be forgotten.

Obama's dilemma. Be careful when you extend a hand. Sometimes the world bites.

Iran votes in record-breaking numbers: Country awaits results in election that has become a referendum on Iran's polarizing president.

Young, Iranian and ready for change: Amid the carnival atmosphere in Tehran, the feeling is that change has already occurred, no matter who wins Friday's election.

Iranians anoint their 'Michelle Obama': Parallels are being drawn between the American first lady and the wife of the main opposition candidate in the June 12 presidential poll.

Iran's elections: The view from the US — Mousavi wins in Boston: Opinions of some Iranians who voted in Beantown

A path to change or more of the same?: The level of debate in the run-up to Friday's presidential poll has surprised even the hard-line president.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/middle-east/100610/tehran-iran-democracy-protests-anniversary