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NEWS & COMMENTARY 2008 SPEAKERS 2007 2006 2005

Monday, June 05, 2006


Tehran, 5 June (AKI) - Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has just doubled annual funding allocated for initiatives aimed at improving the country's image abroad to 30 million dollars in the budget for this Iranian year, which started on 21 March 2006. The money will go to Iran's 60 cultural centres abroad which are managed by the the Culture and Islamic Communications Organisation. The organisation is under the direct supervision of Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and is headed by Mohammad Mohammadi Araghi, a leading conservative in the establishment.

ranian cultural centres abroad, which are particularly active in African and Arab countries, have been accused of sponsoring armed fundamentalist groups.

Araghi has been banned from Persian Gulf countries such as Bahrain and Kuwait.
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