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Omid Memarian

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Professional/Personal Overview

Omid Memarian is a journalist and blogger who is well known in Iran for his news analysis, regular columns and blogs in English and Persian.

Mr. Memarian works as a freelance writer for the IPS news agency (Inter Press Service), Roozonline Daily, and BBC Persian. He is frequently invited to participate as a guest on panels dealing with Iran, and has had op-ed pieces published in The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and Contra Costa Times.

Mr. Memarian was a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism in 2005. He has been involved in civil society activities all around the country since 2000, and has researched the status of the civil society in Iran, post-revolution. Mr. Memarian has also functioned as the editor in chief of Volunteer Actor's Quarterly, which focuses on civil society issues in English and Farsi, for two years.

During the last year he has covered prostitution in Dubai; the World Summit on the Information Society in Geneva; asylum seekers in Istanbul; the IEARN conference in Japan; and participated in a civil society delegation trip to Germany.

Mr. Memarian has helped many foreign journalists who traveled to Iran to complete stories in the last six years. In Oct. 2004, he was arrested, along with two dozen other bloggers and journalists, and detained for almost two months. After being released, he has been outspoken in public about what happened to him in order to force the Iranian authorities to avoid doing the same thing in the future. He received Human Rights Watch's highest honor in 2005, the Human Rights Defender Award, for his courageous work as a human rights activist. You can view his blog at Omidmemarian.blogspot.com.

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