Melbourne: Iran’s Foreign Ministry has slammed the media for labelling French first lady Carla Bruni a "prostitute" after she pledged her support for a woman sentenced to death by stoning.
"Insulting officials of other countries and using indecent words is not endorsed by the Islamic Republic of Iran," News.com.au quoted the foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast as saying.
He added that criticism is fine but the media should refrain from using derogatory words.
Iran’s hard-line daily newspaper Kayhan had attacked the wife of the French President Nicolas Sarkozy, branding her a "prostitute". It ran a story headlined "French prostitutes enter the human rights uproar," in which it criticised Bruni for supporting the Iranian mother-of-two Sakineh Mohammadi-Ashtiani, 43, who has been sentenced to death by stoning for alleged adultery.
Iranian foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, has condemned the worldwide outcry against the sentence handed down to Ashtiani.
"The West must be careful not to allow itself to be misled by people who seek to harm our reputation. Many of the things that were reported on the most recent case are either completely incorrect or contradictory," he said in an interview published in the German magazine Der Spiegel yesterday.
"The campaign is now backed by people who, with the help of a few European politicians and the media, are playing a rigged game. We will soon announce further information about what is behind this game," he added.