Iranian Cabinet Joins Facebook En Masse Despite Ban

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The entire Cabinet of new Iranian President Hasan Rouhani has joined Facebook, even though the government has blocked the social media site since 2009. The move may herald the lifting of some Internet barriers amid a broader push by Rouhani, who took office in August, toward openness and warmer relations with the West, the Associated Press reports.

Last week, the Iranian Foreign Minister said on Twitter that Iran does not deny the Holocaust, distancing the government from the often-belligerent stance of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Rouhani, who is considered a moderate and contrasts with his hardline predecessor Ahmadinejad, also took to Twitter last week to wish Jews  “a blessed Rosh Hashanah,” using the Hebrew name for the Jewish New Year. His Facebook page is here.