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March 12, 2014 0

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

Lebanon and Palestine’s vic­tory over the Zion­ist regime rep­re­sented a glimpse of the IRGC’s power*
(Defa­Press – March 5, 2014)

Gen­eral Ramezan Sharif of the Islamic Rev­o­lu­tion­ary Guard Corps boasted of the IRGC’s mil­i­tary prowess and sup­port for ter­ror­ist groups in Lebanon and Pales­tine. “A glimpse of the IRGC’s [power] was the aid to the vic­tory of Lebanon and Pales­tine in transna­tional areas which the enemy itself is well aware of… Today the Islamic Repub­lic will bring the largest dam­age to Amer­ica for the small­est mis­take. The enemy knows well that it is unable to pro­vide secu­rity for the Zion­ist regime and this is the bless­ing of the IRGC’s power in the area of defense.”

Supreme Leader: Arro­gant pow­ers Spoil­ing from inside

khamenei-iran-anti-west

Supreme Leader Khamenei meet­ing with mem­bers of Iran’s Assem­bly of Experts 

(Fars News Agency – March 6, 2014)

In a meet­ing with mem­bers of Iran’s Assem­bly of Experts, Supreme Leader Aya­tol­lah Khamenei stated, “The super­fi­cial tran­quil­ity of the arro­gant pow­ers and the con­ven­tional pow­ers rul­ing the world are being destroyed and one of its signs is the eco­nomic cri­sis in Europe and the US and the signs of their eco­nomic bank­ruptcy is becom­ing visible.”

Iran­ian envoy blames Israel for Syr­ian tragedy
(Fars News Agency – March 6, 2014)

Iran’s rep­re­sen­ta­tive to Lebanon said in a meet­ing with Lebanese Prime Min­is­ter Fouad Sin­iora, that “the Zion­ist regime” is assist­ing rebel groups in Syria and car­ing for those injured in Israeli mil­i­tary field hospitals.

The Iran­ian nation will bury the hopes of Amer­ica and Israel one by one*
(Tas­nim News Agency – March 6, 2014)

IRGC Deputy Com­man­der Gen­eral Hos­sein Salami said in a state­ment in response to the AIPAC con­fer­ence last week in Wash­ing­ton D.C., “The same way that we buried the enemy front in the past. Today, too, the Iran­ian nation will bury the hopes of the Amer­i­can lead­ers who are by the side of their Zion­ist friends. Be sure that the enemy is unable to do any­thing greater than it has done in the last 35 years. They did every­thing they could do and they have been faced with defeat.”

Tehran, Ash­ton pushes focus on nego­ti­a­tions with top Iran­ian offi­cials*(Kay­han – March 9, 2014)

In response to EU for­eign pol­icy chief Cather­ine Ashton’s offi­cial visit to Tehran, Ali Akbar Velay­ati, a for­mer Iran­ian for­eign min­is­ter and spe­cial advi­sor to the Supreme Leader, crit­i­cized U.S. offi­cials and their threats against Iran. Velay­ati said, “Instances of these types of [unpro­duc­tive] com­ments [regard­ing sanc­tions] by John Kerry and the Pres­i­dent of the United States are against Iran and are due to pres­sure from the Zion­ists,” Velay­ati said at a press con­fer­ence fol­low­ing his meet­ing with Ashton.

Al-Zahar: Iran, Hamas to fur­ther deepen rela­tions soon
(Fars News Agency – March 10, 2014)

Mah­moud Al-Zahar, a senior Hamas offi­cial in Gaza, spoke of improv­ing rela­tions between the Islamist mil­i­tant group and Iran, “The Hamas move­ment and Iran have taken spe­cial mea­sures and we will see many changes in these rela­tions soon.”

Pres­i­dent Rouhani: Regional peace, sta­bil­ity impos­si­ble with­out Iran’s part­ner­ship
(Fars News Agency – March 10, 2014)

In a meet­ing with fam­ily mem­bers of Iran­ian sol­diers killed dur­ing the Iran-Iraq war, Pres­i­dent Rouhani com­mented, “If the enemy once thought in the early days of the (Islamic) Rev­o­lu­tion that Iran was a weak coun­try and could be destroyed by mil­i­tary attack, today it is obvi­ous to every­one that Iran is the most pow­er­ful and mighty coun­try in the region.”

Leader’s Aide: Islamic Ummah to con­tinue sup­port for Pales­tine, resis­tance against Israel
(Fars News Agency – March 10, 2014)

Address­ing a gath­er­ing of the High Coun­cil of the Islamic Awak­en­ing World Forum this week, Velay­ati, the spe­cial advi­sor to the Supreme Leader, pledged con­tin­ued sup­port for Pales­tine against Israel. “The enemy is attempt­ing to mar­gin­al­ize the Pales­tin­ian issue and draw it off the Mus­lim world’s priorities…The Islamic Ummah will con­tinue its sup­port for the oppressed Pales­tin­ian peo­ple and resis­tance against the Zion­ist regime,” Velay­ati said to the gathering.

Our fin­ger is on the trig­ger to destroy the Zion­ist regime from a dis­tance of 1,400 kilo­me­ters*
(Tas­nim News Agency – March 10, 2014

Address­ing a sem­i­nar on the Role of the Mus­lim World on Tues­day, IRGC Deputy Com­man­der Gen­eral Hos­sein Salami said, “From a dis­tance of 1400 kilo­me­ters, our fin­ger is on the trig­ger to destroy the Zion­ist regime. It is Islam that has given us the power and expan­sion to dom­i­nate the hearts of the Pales­tin­ian peo­ple from such geo­graph­i­cal dis­tances. Islam gives us hope and force, which allows us to be able to use the nec­es­sary force and capac­i­ties to destroy the Zion­ist regime, and until that day comes, our fin­ger will remain on the trigger.”

Inter­na­tional Media

Israel’s ‘cam­paign between the wars’ with Iran (Al-Monitor – March 7, 2014)

Last week’s Israeli naval inter­cep­tion of Gaza-bound mis­siles from Iran poses the ques­tion whether Pres­i­dent Rouhani was involved in the plan­ning and/or exe­cu­tion of the shipment.

Iran pres­i­dent con­demns hard-line media crack­down
(Wash­ing­ton Post – March 8, 2014)

In a meet­ing with the nation’s news­pa­per man­agers, Pres­i­dent Rouhani crit­i­cized the clos­ing of two reformist-leaning news­pa­pers in recent months. “Stop­ping the oper­a­tion and clos­ing (news­pa­pers) is the last solu­tion – not the first one,” Rouhani said. He added, “Why today is some media absolutely free and some oth­ers have lit­tle share of this free­dom? Gov­ern­ment crit­ics and oppo­nents are free and will be free but let government’s sup­port­ers also enjoy the same free­dom and secu­rity as well.”

Mercy and social media slow the noose in Iran
(New York Times – March 8, 2014)

As exe­cu­tion by pub­lic hang­ing has steadily risen since Pres­i­dent Rouhani’s elec­tion in June 2013, Ira­ni­ans increas­ingly resort to social media to spread awareness.

Will Iran’s ‘end to extrem­ism’ take hold?
(Chris­t­ian Sci­ence Mon­i­tor – March 9, 2014)

Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani met with Cather­ine Ash­ton, the Euro­pean Union’s for­eign pol­icy chief, in her first visit to the Islamic Repub­lic since her appointment.

Iran tells EU’s Ash­ton nuclear deal pos­si­ble ‘in months’
(BBC – March 9, 2014)

Dur­ing a meet­ing with EU for­eign pol­icy chief Cather­ine Ash­ton in Tehran, For­eign Min­is­ter Moham­mad Javad Zarif stated that a nuclear deal could be reached “in four or five months and even shorter.”

Thwarted, for now, Iran’s bid to tar­get all of Israel from Gaza
(Times of Israel – March 10, 2014)

An analy­sis of Iran’s endeav­ors to arm mil­i­tant groups in Gaza and Lebanon with far-reaching mis­siles that can strike any­where in Israel.

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March 5, 2014 0

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

iran-shipment-gaza-hamas-israel

Iranian-made sacks of cement hid­ing Gaza-bound mis­siles.
Source: Israel Defense Force

Assad pays the price for sup­port­ing the Resis­tance*
(Mashregh News Agency – March 5, 2014)

Iran denies any con­nec­tion to recently uncov­ered mis­sile ship­ment to the Gaza Strip by the IDF, and claims, “The weapons ship­ment that the Israeli regime claims to have stopped is not Iranian-built, but rather it is from the Syr­ian armed forces. This issue demon­strates that despite inter­na­tional pres­sures and the trea­son of Arab coun­tries, includ­ing the Pales­tini­ans, Bashar Assad con­tin­ues to sup­port the Islamic Resis­tance [Hamas].”

The gov­ern­ment will not cross the red line/We have been happy with the first steps of the nego­ti­a­tions*
(Mehr News – March 4, 2014)

Pres­i­dent Rouhani affirms that Iran’s nuclear rights will be pre­served and says, “What the Amer­i­cans say is for the pres­sure of their pub­lic opin­ion, extrem­ists and Zionists.”

We are not opti­mistic of the nego­ti­a­tions*
(Fars News Agency – March 4, 2014)

Deputy For­eign Min­is­ter Abbas Araghchi claims that, “The prin­ci­ple oppo­nents of the Geneva agree­ment are the Zion­ists and the Zion­ists con­tinue to pur­sue the pol­icy of zero enrich­ment, and if they con­tinue to do this, the agree­ment will fail. You are wit­ness to the influ­ence of the Zion­ist lobby on Amer­ica and its Con­gress, and every time Amer­i­can lead­ers are forced to go along with Tel Aviv and pro­vide comments.”

Leg­is­la­tor: US should pay heavy price for adven­tur­ism against Iran
(Fars News Agency – March 3, 2014)

An Iran­ian mem­ber of par­lia­ment, Moham­mad Esmay­eeli, warned the U.S. that they can­not “attempt their goals by threats” and claimed that the Zion­ist lob­bies influ­ence U.S. statesmen.

Iran raps US human rights report
(Fars News Agency – March 2, 2014)

Iran­ian For­eign Min­is­ter Moham­mad Javad Zarif crit­i­cized the U.S.’s recent human rights report, stat­ing that Wash­ing­ton is respon­si­ble for “mur­der­ing hun­dreds of inno­cent women and chil­dren” and sup­ports the “inhu­mane mea­sures by the Zion­ist regime against the Pales­tin­ian people.”

The Basi­jis await instruc­tions from the leader to lib­er­ate Jerusalem*
(Fars News Agency – Feb­ru­ary 28, 2014)

“The Basi­jis [Iran’s vol­un­teer para­mil­i­tary unit] of the Islamic world are wait­ing for the leader’s com­mand to lib­er­ate noble Jerusalem,” said Moham­mad Reza Naghdi, the head of the Basij organization.

Bor­jourdi: Iran will always sup­port the resis­tance*
(Tas­nim News Agency – Feb­ru­ary 28, 2014)

The head of the Iran­ian Parliament’s Com­mis­sion for National Secu­rity and For­eign Pol­icy said dur­ing a meet­ing with Lebanese Prime Min­is­ter Tamam Salam that Iran “will not aban­don sup­port of the Resis­tance and this is a per­ma­nent prin­ci­ple for Iran.”

Inter­na­tional Media

Israel halts ‘weapons ship­ment from Iran’
(BBC – March 5, 2014)

Israeli naval forces board Panamanian-flagged ship in the Red Sea off the coast of Sudan; claims ship­ment of mis­siles were a “clan­des­tine oper­a­tion” by Iran.

Israel seizes ship with mis­siles head­ing from Iran to Gaza
(Ha’aretz – March 5, 2014) Offi­cial video of IDF naval raid.

Iran’s Guard says it has mul­ti­ple war­head mis­siles
(Wash­ing­ton Post – March 5, 2014)

Iran­ian Defense Min­is­ter Hos­sein Dehghan unveiled four new types of bal­lis­tic mis­siles, two of which are equipped with mul­ti­ple war­heads. “These mis­siles are able to hit and destroy enemy tar­gets with pre­ci­sion, and they meet a vari­ety of the armed forces’ needs,” said Dehghan at the unveil­ing ceremony.

Netanyahu warns on Iran, urges no Pales­tin­ian ‘excuses’
(Reuters – March 4, 2014)

Address­ing the annual AIPAC con­fer­ence, Prime Min­is­ter Netanyahu lamented that “lead­ing pow­ers of the world are talk­ing about leav­ing Iran with the capa­bil­ity to enrich uranium.”

Iran cut­ting sen­si­tive nuclear stocks, much work remains: IAEA
(Reuters – March 3, 2014)

IAEA direc­tor gen­eral Yukiya Amano released a state­ment on Mon­day that “As of today, mea­sures agreed under the Joint Plan of Action are being imple­mented as planned.”

Rouhani tells Iran gen­er­als to cut hos­tile rhetoric
(Thom­son Reuters Foun­da­tion – March 1, 2014)

“We must be very care­ful in our cal­cu­la­tions. Launch­ing mis­siles and stag­ing mil­i­tary exer­cises to scare off the other side is not good deter­rence, although a neces­sity in its proper place,” Rouhani stated.

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