Page last updated at 13:27 GMT, Wednesday, 15 October 2003 14:27 UK

Iran's joy and anger over Nobel

Iranian press review graphic

The Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Iranian human rights activist Shirin Ebadi last week continues to stir up emotions in the Iranian print media.

While the press remains deeply divided between conservatives and reformists, Iranian state radio gave her return home on Tuesday night the bare minimum of coverage.

It referred to the thousands of people who greeted her at Tehran's city airport as merely "a group of people".

Some excerpts from press comment:

"Now that the lady of peace is in Iran, this is what we have to say to her: the people of the world admired you, Iranians were proud of you, humanity smiled at you. But after all these congratulations, will you remember that Iranian women and children are waiting with to see if you can breathe meaning into their rights with the Nobel Peace Prize that you deservedly received."

Etemaad - reformist

"The conservatives' cold and negative attitude towards the awarding of an international prize to an Iranian, Muslim woman cannot be justifiable on the basis of their having different beliefs from her. More than being a prize for Mrs Shirin Ebadi's beliefs, it is an award for her work to help vulnerable women and children and her humanitarian stance. A negative reaction to this is a kind of indifference to or a stance against human rights in the international community."

Yas-e Now - reformist

"It is not too much to expect that the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to an Iranian, Muslim women, regardless of her views and political record, should at least not be received with a news boycott or, even worse, serve as an excuse for mud slinging against Shirin Ebadi and the five-member committee, Alfred Nobel and everyone who does not think like us."

Yas-e Now - reformist

"It can be said without a shred of doubt that the aim of awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to Mrs Shirin Ebadi was to insult Muslim nations, especially the Iranian people. And this new project was designed and set in train after the failure of America and its allies to confront Islamic Iran and with the aim of wreaking revenge on Iran and Iranians."

Kayhan - hardline

"The fact that awarding this prize to Ebadi was totally political and that the people involved in awarding the prize are engaged in a fierce battle against religion and Islamic and human commands becomes clear when we see that the prize did not go to John Paul II because of his opposition to abortion, pre-marriage sexual relations and homosexuality. What the westerners have in mind by awarding prizes of this kind to the likes of Shirin Ebadi is to back and strengthen individuals of this kind so that they can further oppose religion and religious commands."

Jomhuri-ye Eslami - hardline

BBC Monitoring, based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.

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