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July 10, 2014 Off

Iran Weekly: Selected News & Developments

The fol­low­ing is a selec­tion of news reports and com­men­tary from Iran­ian media and main­stream pub­li­ca­tions on devel­op­ments per­tain­ing to Iran. This weekly update includes a sam­pling of pub­lished reports from Iran’s Farsi-language media*as well as rel­e­vant arti­cles from the inter­na­tional press.

Iran­ian Media

Dif­fi­cult days ahead for the occu­piers*
(Basij News Agency – July 9, 2014)

Deputy Chief of Staff of the Iran­ian Armed Forces Mas­soud Jaza­y­eri said in response to the esca­lat­ing vio­lence between Israel and Hamas mil­i­tants, “Dif­fi­cult days lie ahead for the occu­piers [Israel] and the Pales­tin­ian resis­tance has once again cast the Zion­ist war machine into the mud.” Speak­ing about recent events that occurred lead­ing up to the renewed fight­ing, Jaza­y­eri added, “The mar­tyr­dom of the Pales­tin­ian teenager, after he was tor­tured and set on fire alive, [was done] with the excuse of the kid­nap­ping of three Jew­ish set­tler youth, and this has inflamed the world’s opin­ion against the hang­man exe­cu­tioner Zionists…”

Head of the judi­ciary crit­i­cizes incor­rect state­ments made by some cul­tural offi­cials*
(Rasa News Agency – July 9, 2014)

Aya­tol­lah Sadegh Lar­i­jani, the head of Iran’s judi­ciary, claimed that Amer­ica and its allies are sup­port­ing the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), claim­ing, “One the one hand, the Amer­i­cans claim that they are against ISIS, and on the other, it’s observed that America’s lack­eys are the pri­mary sup­port­ers of the ter­ror­ists in the region and they give money, weapons and sup­port to them.”

marziyeh-afkham-iran

Marziyeh Afkham

Iran strongly con­demns inten­si­fied Israeli crimes against Pales­tini­ans in Gaza Strip
(Fars News Agency – July 8, 2014)

Iran­ian For­eign Min­istry Spokes­woman Marziyeh Afkham con­demned Israeli “aggres­sions” against the Gaza Strip, claim­ing that Israel is using the recent tragic mur­ders of three Israeli teenagers as cover for its airstrikes against Hamas tar­gets: “Surely, the sav­age aggres­sions and killing of the defense­less peo­ple which started on the false pre­text of abduc­tion of three Israeli set­tlers and have con­tin­ued for more than two weeks now and the mur­der of the mar­tyred Pales­tini­ans teenager (Moham­mad Abu Khdeir) which is a rem­i­nis­cent of the crimes com­mit­ted by the ter­ror­ists in Syria and Iraq show inca­pa­bil­ity and des­ti­tute of that regime vis-à-vis the resis­tance of the heroic peo­ple of Pales­tine [sic].”

FM: Iran not to strike final deal with world pow­ers at all costs
(Fars News Agency – July 8, 2014)

Speak­ing on the side­lines of the lat­est round of nuclear nego­ti­a­tions tak­ing place in Vienna, Iran­ian For­eign Min­is­ter Moham­mad Javad Zarif said, “We do not accept to reach a solu­tion at all costs as we insist on our rights while try­ing to find an accept­able, log­i­cal and long-term solu­tion.” Zarif added, “I hope that the other side will be ready to see the real­i­ties, take our word seri­ously and accept that the Iran­ian nation has never with­drawn under pressure.”

Amer­ica and ISIS are both lack­eys of the Zion­ists*
(Rasa News Agency – July 8, 2014)

Speak­ing dur­ing a ser­mon after prayers, Aya­tol­lah Hos­sein Moza­heri, a senior cleric from the Esfa­han province, claimed, “ISIS and Amer­ica are the lack­eys of the Zion­ists. Amer­ica and Zion­ism have com­bined forces to get rid of our pre­cious Islam.”

Regional events have no other result than ‘the final con­quest of Jerusalem’*
(Fars News Agency – July 6, 2014)

Head of the Basij Vol­un­teers Orga­ni­za­tion Moham­mad Reza Naqdi, stated dur­ing a speech that “The name of Hezbol­lah is one con­sid­ered like a mis­sile force in the world that shakes Israel’s iron limbs. In Pales­tine we also see that the calls of the Imam [Khome­ini] are awak­en­ing them, and the peo­ple who stand against the occu­piers of Jerusalem with sticks and stones can deal a response to Tel Aviv with rockets.”

Inter­na­tional Media

Open the files on the Iran coup
(The New York Times, Op-Ed – July 9, 2014)

Op-ed con­trib­u­tor Roham Alvandi writes that now is the time for the U.S. and Britain to dis­close their roles in Iran’s 1953 coup, and that this admis­sion will help mend the “open wound in Iran’s rela­tions with the West.”

Iran’s supreme leader calls for more ura­nium enrich­ment capac­ity
(Newsweek – July 8, 2014)

In a state­ment pub­lished online, Supreme Leader Aya­tol­lah Ali Khamenei stated that Iran must have 190,000 cen­trifuges, call­ing this “the country’s absolute need.”

Iran’s hand in Gaza
(The Wall Street Jour­nal – July 8, 2014)

A recent United Nations report indi­cat­ing Iran’s role in pro­vid­ing weapons to Pales­tin­ian mil­i­tants goes unnoticed.

Khamenei: Nuclear team ‘will defend Iran’s rights’
(Now Media – July 7, 2014)

Speak­ing after break­ing the Ramadan fast, Supreme Leader Khamenei expressed his sup­port for Iran’s nuclear nego­ti­at­ing team ahead of the lat­est round of talks in Vienna.

Iran weighs U.S.-trained econ­o­mist as its new UN envoy
(Bloomberg News – July 6, 2014)

An American-educated econ­o­mist may be selected by the Rouhani admin­is­tra­tion to serve as Iran’s next UN ambassador.

Iran’s mes­sage: We can make his­tory
(YouTube – July 2, 2014)

For­eign Min­is­ter Zarif released a YouTube clip appeal­ing to the West to forge a nego­ti­ated set­tle­ment to the Iran­ian nuclear issue.

As dead­line nears for an Iran nuclear pact, the fin­gers are point­ing
(The New York Times – July 2, 2014)

As nego­tia­tors for the P5+1 and Iran pre­pare to ham­mer out an agree­ment before the July 20 dead­line, both sides are reit­er­at­ing red lines they can­not cross.

Iran­ian nuclear deal still is pos­si­ble, but time is run­ning out
(The Wash­ing­ton Post, Op-Ed – June 30, 2014)

Sec­re­tary of State John Kerry writes that Iran has a chance to end its “eco­nomic and diplo­matic iso­la­tion and improve the lives of their peo­ple” if the Ira­ni­ans show flex­i­bil­ity and reach an agree­ment with the P5+1.

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May 21, 2014 Off

Iran Weekly: Selected News & Developments

The fol­low­ing is a selec­tion of news reports and com­men­tary from Iran­ian media and main­stream pub­li­ca­tions on devel­op­ments per­tain­ing to Iran. This weekly update includes a sam­pling of pub­lished reports from Iran’s Farsi-language media*as well as rel­e­vant arti­cles from the inter­na­tional press.

Iran­ian Media

The Islamic Rev­o­lu­tion cre­ated two polit­i­cal mod­els against the world infi­dels*
(Basij News Agency – May 20, 2014)

In a speech, IRGC Brig. Gen­eral Hos­sein Salami said: “Today, even Amer­i­can intel­lec­tu­als clearly acknowl­edge that in any place they have tried to plant democ­racy, the heart of Islam sprouts, and the Islamic Repub­lic has tested [this] and been suc­cess­ful in this model.”

seyyed-mahmoud-alavi-iran

Iran­ian Min­is­ter of Intel­li­gence Seyyed Mah­moud Alavi

The Min­is­ter of Intel­li­gence warns of new enemy move­ments against Iran*
(Fars News Agency – May 20, 2014)

Seyyed Mah­moud Alavi,  Iran’s min­is­ter of intel­li­gence, said in a state­ment: “In the last five years, polit­i­cal ana­lysts, even inside the Zion­ist regime and with Zion­ist view­points, have pre­dicted that this regime [Israel] is on the decline after it was slapped in the face by Hezbol­lah and the Pales­tin­ian resis­tance [Hamas] … Five years ago, var­i­ous Islamic groups, such as Hamas and Hezbol­lah, were stand­ing beside Syria united and were often capa­ble of slap­ping Israel in the face.”

We have not shut down any­thing up till now; Keep­ing in accor­dance with our red lines, we con­tinue nego­ti­a­tions*
(Fars News Agency – May 20, 2014)

Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Iran­ian Atomic Agency, said dur­ing a meet­ing with sem­i­nary stu­dents that “West­ern coun­tries have no choice but to inter­act with Iran,” espe­cially con­cern­ing his country’s nuclear program.

Rouhani hopes for suc­cess­ful nuclear nego­ti­a­tions
(Mehr News Agency – May 19, 2014)

In a meet­ing with gov­ern­ment offi­cials, Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani said, “The Islamic Repub­lic of Iran has never intended to tell lies and seeks to gain peace­ful nuclear tech­nol­ogy and will pur­sue it as an undis­putable right for Ira­ni­ans, it also wants a deal on [the] Tehran nuclear pro­gram which ben­e­fits all.”

Al Sisi’s vic­tory in the elec­tions is con­ceiv­able; They want to return Egypt to the Mubarak era*
(Basij News Agency – May 19, 2014)

Has­san Hadizadeh, an Iran­ian jour­nal­ist on Mid­dle East affairs, said regard­ing Egypt: “The Egypt­ian gen­er­als’ soft coup d’état received help from the West and Saudi Ara­bia, and the West­ern­ers arrived at the con­clu­sion of the pos­si­bil­ity of estab­lish­ing democ­racy in their own accord and secur­ing the safety of the Zion­ist regime, while the gen­er­als are sub­or­di­nate to the West and Liberals.”

Mil­i­tary and defense equip­ment are insur­mount­able red lines for Iran*
(Basij News Agency – May 19, 2014)

IRGC com­man­der Jaza­y­eri stated, “With the knowl­edge that the issue of [dis­cussing] mil­i­tary and defense equip­ment con­sti­tute an unbreach­able red line for Iran, Amer­ica aims to pres­sure the Iran­ian nego­ti­at­ing team and to black­mail them rather than dis­cussing nuclear issues.”

Iran con­demns Argen­tine court rul­ing on AMIA probe
(Press TV – May 16, 2014)

In response to an Argen­tine court rul­ing on the 2013 signed Mem­o­randa of Under­stand­ing between Iran and Argentina, Iran’s For­eign Min­istry Spokes­woman Marziyeh Afkham said: “The Iran­ian gov­ern­ment believes that the mem­o­ran­dum of under­stand­ing was a proper solu­tion and oppor­tu­nity for dis­cov­er­ing the fact regard­ing the AMIA tragedy and the set­tle­ment of dif­fer­ences in that respect, but the mea­sure by the Argen­tine court deprived both sides of that oppor­tu­nity. There­fore, the Islamic Repub­lic of Iran expresses regret and dis­con­tent over this decision.”

Inter­na­tional Media

Young Ira­ni­ans arrested for being too ‘Happy in Tehran’
(The New York Times – May 20, 2014)

Six Ira­ni­ans were arrested and made to give con­fes­sions on state tele­vi­sion for their role in cre­at­ing and start­ing in an Iran­ian cover of singer Pharell Williams’s song, “Happy.”

Iran­ian ana­lyst: ‘Who entrusted Iran with destroy­ing Israel?’
(Al-Monitor – May 19, 2014)

Sadegh Zibakalam, a Tehran Uni­ver­sity pro­fes­sor known to hold cen­trist views, has pub­licly crit­i­cized Iran­ian offi­cials’ state­ments and rhetoric on Israel. “Iran has explic­itly stated many times that it wants to destroy Israel. None of the other coun­tries that have a nuclear pro­gram have state that they want to destroy a coun­try. I don’t know who entrusted Iran with destroy­ing Israel,” Zibakalam said dur­ing a speech at an uni­ver­sity in the city of Mashhad.

Iran’s for­got­ten pris­on­ers of con­science
(The Wall Street Jour­nal – May 19, 2014)

Robert P. George and Kat­rina Lan­tos Swett, two mem­bers of the U.S. Com­mis­sion on Inter­na­tional Reli­gious Free­dom, wrote an opin­ion piece detail­ing the con­tin­u­ing state-sanctioned per­se­cu­tion of Iran’s Baha’i community.

8 Days in Iran
(60 Min­utes – May 18, 2014)

Reporters from 60 Min­utes were granted per­mis­sion to visit Iran and meet with elected offi­cials and ordi­nary citizens.

Tehran poll: 60% believe media has lit­tle or no free­dom
(Al-Monitor – May 16, 2014)

A poll con­ducted by Iran’s Min­istry of Cul­ture and Islamic Guid­ance found that the major­ity of cit­i­zens liv­ing in Tehran “believe the media does not have free­dom of express or has very lit­tle free­dom of expression.”

Ira­ni­ans ‘least anti-Semitic in Mid-East’
(BBC – May 16, 2014)

An arti­cle pub­lished by the BBC dis­cusses the sur­pris­ing find­ing from ADL’s Global 100 sur­vey that the Islamic Repub­lic of Iran is the least anti-Semitic coun­try in the Mid­dle East and North Africa region.

Iran pays Afghans to fight for Assad
(The Wall Street Jour­nal – May 15, 2014)

Iran amps up efforts to save the Assad regime by offer­ing $500 a month and Iran­ian res­i­dency to thou­sands of Afghan refugees to help Assad in his blood war against the Syr­ian people.

Iran: Oil exports con­tinue to decline
(The New York Times – May 15, 2014)

The month of April saw the con­tin­u­ing decline of Iran­ian oil exports, down from 1.58 mil­lion bar­rels a day in Feb­ru­ary to 1.11 mil­lion bar­rels a day in April.

Iran­ian real­ity check
(The New York Times – May 15, 2014)

Opin­ion colum­nist Roger Cohen urged Iran to reach a deal and avert prospects of war.

Mak­ing Iran come clean about its nukes
(The Wall Street Jour­nal – May 14, 2014)

David Albright and Bruno Ter­trais write that “A pre­req­ui­site for any final agree­ment is for Iran to address nuclear-weapons ques­tions raised by inspec­tors of the Inter­na­tional Atomic Energy Agency.”

No, sanc­tions didn’t force Iran to make a deal
(For­eign Pol­icy – May 14, 2014)

Trita Parsi, the head of the National Iran­ian Amer­i­can Coun­cil, writes that “Sanc­tions are nei­ther the rea­son for the break­through, not the impe­tus behind the gov­ern­ment of Iran­ian Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani’s open­ness to talk;” rather, it was Rouhani’s cam­paign­ing suc­cess and high voter turnout that enabled Rouhani to come to power.

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May 2, 2014 1

Iran Weekly: Selected News & Developments

The fol­low­ing is a selec­tion of news reports and com­men­tary from Iran­ian media and main­stream pub­li­ca­tions on devel­op­ments per­tain­ing to Iran. This weekly update includes a sam­pling of pub­lished reports from Iran’s Farsi-language media* as well as rel­e­vant arti­cles from the inter­na­tional press.

Iran­ian Media

The IRGC’s mis­siles are in desir­able readi­ness*
(Fars News Agency – April 30, 2014)

In a meet­ing Wednes­day with the IRGC Coun­cil of Ashura Com­man­ders, IRGC Com­man­der Moham­mad Jafari said, “In terms of mil­i­tary and secu­rity readi­ness, our mis­siles are in very good shape; how­ever, the IRGC’s pri­mary objec­tive is to be pre­pared in faith, and this fac­tor makes the IRGC the supe­rior among the world’s armies.”

P5+1 nego­ti­a­tions with Iran have been breath­less*
(Fars News Agency – April 30, 2014)

Deputy For­eign Min­is­ter Has­san Qashqavi said dur­ing a press con­fer­ence on the sta­tus of the nuclear nego­ti­a­tions that, “The future of the nego­ti­a­tions at present are head­ing toward the direc­tion of a com­pre­hen­sive [set­tle­ment], and talks are sen­si­tive, because the pri­mary issues have not yet been resolved. For now, we can­not directly assess the final out­come of the talks.”

Iran is not after cre­at­ing ten­sions in the region*
(Fars News Agency – April 30, 2014)

Speaker of Par­lia­ment Ali Lar­i­jani said dur­ing a speech mark­ing National Per­sian Gulf Day, “The Per­sian Gulf is a very impor­tant issue, and if we and our neigh­bor­ing coun­tries have the cor­rect approach, we could earn a lot of inter­est from it… Today, the pres­ence of for­eign ships [in the Gulf] have cre­ated impli­ca­tions.” Lar­i­jani added that Iran has “not been after any ten­sions in the region and we will not be. The secu­rity and calm of the region is of ben­e­fit for all, espe­cially for Iran.”

ayatollah-noori-hamadani-iran

Aya­tol­lah Noori Hamadani

Amer­ica does not dare attack Iran due to its fear of the IRGC*
(Basij News Agency – April 30, 2014)

Aya­tol­lah Noori Hamadani, a senior cleric from the city of Qom, said dur­ing a meet­ing with com­man­ders and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Supreme Leader, that, “The poli­cies of the IRGC have fright­ened Amer­ica and the world, and we must pro­mote the spirit of jihad and martyrdom-seeking in soci­ety, espe­cially among the youth.”

Sep­tem­ber 11 was an excuse for Amer­ica to get closer to the region*
(Mehr News Agency – April 30, 2014)

Nader Tale­bzadeh, sec­re­tary of Iran’s annual Inter­na­tional Resis­tance Film Fes­ti­val, praised the 2012 film “Oper­a­tion Ter­ror” by for­mer Cal­i­for­nia mayor Art Olivier, as pre­sent­ing the “truth” about the 9/11 attacks. Dur­ing a review panel of the film, Tale­bzadeh said, “In the first sequence of this film, the Sep­tem­ber 11th events [orches­trated] by the Amer­i­can gov­ern­ment are disclosed…”

Iran wel­comes Fatah-Hamas Deal
(Fars News Agency – April 26, 2014)

For­eign Min­istry Spokes­woman Marziyeh Afkham released the fol­low­ing state­ment on recent Pales­tin­ian rec­on­cil­i­a­tion efforts: “The Islamic Repub­lic of Iran wel­comes the Pales­tin­ian groups’ sol­i­dar­ity against the Zion­ist regime and any national rec­on­cil­i­a­tion which leads to Pales­tin­ian unity and adop­tion of deci­sions in line with the mate­ri­al­iza­tion of that nation’s valu­able causes against the expan­sion­ism and aggres­sions of the Quds Occu­py­ing Regime (Israel).”

Inter­na­tional Media

A bold move
(The Econ­o­mist – April 30, 2014)

The long awaited sec­ond round of cuts to sub­si­dies on gaso­line and elec­tric­ity have been imple­mented by Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani. Gaso­line prices were raised by 75%, from $0.16 to $0.28 per liter.

U.S. tar­gets Chi­nese busi­ness­man, says he sup­plied parts for Iran­ian mis­siles
(CNN – April 29, 2014)

New sanc­tions and crim­i­nal charges were announced by the U.S. against a Chi­nese busi­ness­man accused of sup­ply­ing the Iran­ian mil­i­tary with parts for bal­lis­tic missiles.

Tehran book fair to fea­ture works by anti-Semites, Holo­caust deniers
(Access ADL – April 29, 2014)

An annual book fair in Tehran will include domes­tic and foreign-published anti-Semitic and Holocaust-denying books avail­able to the public.

Iran to tar­get decoy US air­craft in drills
(The Wash­ing­ton Post – April 27, 2014)

Admi­ral Ali Fadavi of the IRGC’s Naval Forces announced that Iran­ian forces should “tar­get the [mock-up U.S. air­craft] car­rier” in upcom­ing war games train­ing. Fadavi added that the exer­cise will allow the IRGC to “learn about weak­nesses and strengths of our enemy.”

Mean­ing­ful progress with Iran
(The New York Times, Edi­to­r­ial Board – April 26, 2014)

A look into the suc­cesses, and short­com­ings, of the nuclear nego­ti­a­tions between Iran and the West as the July dead­line for a final agree­ment approaches.

Iran gen­eral urges Tehran to make new UN pick
(The Wash­ing­ton Post – April 19, 2014)

Offi­cials from the Iran­ian mil­i­tary have urged the for­eign min­istry to name a new envoy to the United Nations after the U.S. block grant­ing a visa to the Islamic Republic’s orig­i­nal ambas­sador over alleged ties to the 1979 U.S. Embassy hostage crisis.

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