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Iran bans international journalists from covering rallies

  • Story Highlights
  • International media, including CNN, will be banned from covering rallies in Tehran
  • Iran's government-run media will be allowed to air live reports on post-election rallies
  • Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's supporters turn out for demonstration
  • Opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi urges backers to avoid possible clashes
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TEHRAN, Iran (CNN) -- Iran's government Tuesday banned international media from covering rallies in Tehran being held in the wake of last week's disputed presidential election.

A demonstrator holds his bloodied arm during Monday's protest in Iran.

Supporters of Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi protest Monday in Tehran.

The decision comes after video footage emerged showing violence at demonstrations in support of opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi.

Moussavi has contested the results of Friday's election, which showed an overwhelming victory for hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Moussavi's supporters have taken to the streets, often clashing with police and Ahmadinejad's backers.

Iran's government had criticized some of the media coverage and images, describing them as biased.

International news outlets, including CNN, can talk about rallies in their live reports, but they are not allowed to leave their hotel rooms and offices.

Iranian government-run television, which was not affected by the restrictions, aired live coverage of Tuesday's rally in support of Ahmadinejad, whose supporters crowded the streets of central Tehran. Video Watch CNN's Christiane Amanpour report on the earlier protest »

Moussavi asked his backers to forego a planned rally Tuesday in the same area as the pro-Ahmadinejad gathering at Vali Asr Square in Tehran.

Instead, his supporters gathered at a different location in the capital, according to video footage of the rally.

In addition to restricting international journalists, Iran also blocked access to certain online communication tools -- text and video -- but many Iranians were able to find a way around the restrictions.

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Seven people were killed Monday night in Tehran, government-funded Press TV said.

Iran's election authority has agreed to recount some votes in the disputed election, but Moussavi has rejected the idea, asking instead for fresh elections.

CNN's Reza Sayah and Samson Desta in Tehran contributed to this report.

All About IranMahmoud AhmadinejadMir Hossein Moussavi

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