14 Oct 2009 22:18
Head of the Expediency Council, Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani, said he was a firm believer in the legitimacy of the new Ahmadinejad administration.
"Since the inauguration of the 10th administration, I believe in its legitimacy. Presently Mr. [Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad attends the Expediency Council meetings as president, with invitations signed by myself," Rafsanjani said in a meeting with Iranian political figures in favor of the national unity plan.
According to a Javan Online report, when asked about the importance of his role in the national unity plan, Rafsanjani said, "I do not want these issues to rotate around me, because it could provoke sensitivities. In regard to issues that are related to me, I will pursue them on my own."
Iran-Egypt rapprochement plan back on track?
Press TV | Oct. 14, 2009
In what appears to be a step toward the normalization of relations between Iran and Egypt, the two sides held high-level talks in the red sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.
Iran's Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar and his Egyptian counterpart Habib Ibrahim el-Adly discussed a wide range of regional issues on the sidelines of the sixth meeting of interior ministers of Iraq's neighbor states.
"Iran and Egypt have many areas of common interest," said Mohammad-Najjar.
"Radical ideas that prevent the betterment of ties between Cairo and Tehran should be cast aside," said the Iranian Interior Minister.
El-Adly agreed that "minor issues should not get in the way of Iran-Egypt relations," and added that his country was keen on improving economic and trade ties with the Islamic Republic.
Diplomatic ties between Iran and Egypt were severed in 1980 due to Cairo's recognition of Israel and its signing of a peace treaty with Tel Aviv.
Senior Cleric tells Ayatollah Dastgheib 'satanic trickery' made him sign critical letter
Official website: Ayatollah Dastgheib
A prominent member of the Assembly of Experts, Ayatollah Mohammad-Ali Dastgheib, has published on his website a letter of apology sent to him by Ayatollah Abdolali Ayatollahi.
Dasteghib, representative of Shiraz to the Assembly, came under fire for requesting an emergency session to review the credentials of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
In a letter addressed to Ayatollahi, Dastgheib asked whether the senior cleric had indeed been one of the signatories of the communiqué signed against him.
Ayatollahi responded by saying, "The other day a Sheikh [a cleric who is not a descendant of the prophet] named Woldan came to my residence, and using satanic trickery, told me that a large number of clerics and Friday Prayer leaders had signed the letter he had with him. He told me even Ayatollah Dastgheib had signed it; thus I was duped into signing it. Later I learned it was a lie and now I, Ayatollahi, feel great shame and extend my sincerest apologies."
Intelligence ministry summons students over mourning ceremony
AUTNews | Oct. 14, 2009
Iran's Intelligence Ministry summoned five students from Tehran's Khajeh Nasir Toosi University over a memorial service held on Sunday for the victims of the post-election violence.
Mahboub Khah, Diana Khoda-Rahimi, Pouya Hosseinpouri and Saman Khaledian were receiving summons for the first time. Javid Hajhemati was being summoned for the second time.
In its account of the memorial service, Fars News Agency had claimed that the KNTU students were dispersed before the gathering could be held.
It is unclear why the five students have now been called in to the intelligence ministry when according to Fars, the memorial service was not held.
Student critics of Larijani summoned
Tabnak | Oct. 12, 2009
Sharif University of Technology said Monday six students were summoned to the disciplinary committee for insulting Mohammad-Javad Larijani.
According to the dean of the university, Saeed Sohrabpour, a number of students had chanted pro- and anti- Larijani slogans during a session at which Larijani was a guest speaker. Some students even walked out.
"While this [behaviour] does not require taking disciplinary measures, it is not befitting of Sharif students. Treating a guest in such a rude manner is an unprecedented event at this university," Mehr News Agency quoted Sohrabpour as saying.
"The [disciplinary] committee of Sharif University has summoned six students for provoking the gathering outside the library building," he added.
Sohrabpour rejected reports that students residing in the university's dormitory had been reprimanded.
Police chief: 179 officers were injured in run-up to election
Khabar Online | Oct. 12, 2009
Police chief Azizollah Rajabzadeh said 179 police officers were injured in the course of street gatherings during the campaign period before the June presidential election.
At the joint assembly of Iranian police officers in Tehran on Monday, Rajabzadeh praised the civilian police force for its "excellent performance" in the run-up to the presidential election.
Rajabzadeh said police forces had successfully maintained order and provided security for the gatherings during the campaign period.
"While 179 police officers sustained injuries in the pre-election gatherings, only four of the supporters of the presidential candidates suffered injuries and that was a result of being stampeded by their fellow citizens."
"After the election when illegal gatherings and rallies were held, police officers acted with profound insight and measured force... when there was need for exerting force they did so, and when there was need to show restraint they did that as well," he added.
Prosecutor warns media against defamation of political elites
Tabnak | Oct. 10, 2009
Tehran prosecutor Abbas Jafari rejected reports that the son and son-in-law of a well-known political figure were arrested for smuggling cellular phones into the country.
Jafari said that all media outlets, including online publications, must verify the credibility of the stories regarding officials and only publish content within the frameworks of media law.
"The judiciary will take legal action against those who spread false rumors," he added, urging media outlets to pay special attention to maintaining the reputation of all Iranians, and the country's officials in particular.
When asked what measures had been taken in this regard by the Prosecutor's Office, Jafari replied that one of the parties responsible for publishing the rumors had been summoned to court, and the result of the investigations would be made public in the near future.
On Oct. 6, Mizan News, a website affiliated with top presidential aide Mojtaba Hashemi-Samareh, ran a report that claimed the son and son-in-law of former judiciary chief Ayatollah Mohammad Hashemi-Shahroudi had been taken into custody for smuggling mobile handsets into Iran.
The report further claimed that Shahroudi had managed to secure their release through intense lobbying.
Jafari went on to say that media which quoted 'informed judiciary sources' were subject to legal persecution unless such outlets could determine the credibility of their sources.
Ahmadinejad silent on Obama Peace Prize
Khabar Online | Oct. 12, 2009
Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reacted to news of Barack Obama receiving the Nobel Peace Prize with silence.
When asked about his opinion regarding Obama and the Peace Prize on the sidelines of the International Media Conference in Tehran, Ahmadinejad declined to comment.
Tavakoli: Where is my vote?
Khabar Online | Oct. 12, 2009
While the spokesman for the special Majlis committee reviewing the Ahmadinejad administration's economic reform plan claimed to have reached consensus on an article of a subsidy bill, Principlist lawmaker Ahmad Tavakoli denies having voted in favor of the bill.
According to the Khabar Online report, after voicing his objection to the consensus as claimed by Kazem Delkhoush, Tavakoli jokingly asked "where is my vote?"
Majlis on Monday began discussing details of the subsidy bill and agreed on one article, which would gradually cut energy subsidies over a "maximum" of five years. They, however, failed to reach agreement on the rest of the 17-article bill.
Tavakoli wanted the "maximum" phrase excluded so that the government would not be rushed to implement the plan over a shorter period.
Delkhoush, however, was of the opinion that this phrase should not be omitted from the bill and went on to claim a parliamentary consensus on the bill, prompting objection by Tavakoli.
Pop star rejects walk-out rumors
Tabnak | Oct. 11, 2009
Iranian pop singer Mohammad Esfahani has reportedly denied that he threatened to walk off stage if Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attended the closing ceremony of the Digital Media Festival in Tehran.
According to Salam News, Esfahani had said that even if Ahmadinejad were to show up in the middle of his performance, he would walk off stage.
Fars News Agency, however, quoted Esfahani as saying he was not scheduled to give a performance at the ceremony.
Esfahani reportedly rejected the reports as baseless rumors, and said that Mohammad Eftekhari was the singer who would be taking the stage at the closing ceremony.
Meanwhile Eftekhari told Fars, "They have talked to me about it [a performance] but I still haven't agreed to it."
Eftekhari also rejected the rumors saying, "If the president were to participate at the ceremony he would definitely attend the concert, and this would be an honor for us."
Pop singer: If Ahmadinejad attends, I will walk off stage
Mowjcamp | Oct. 11, 2009
Acclaimed Iranian vocalist Mohammad Esfahani has threatened to walk off stage if president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attends the closing ceremony of the Digital Media Festival in Tehran.
The pop singer stressed that if Ahmadinejad's attendance at the closing ceremony was confirmed, he would refuse to perform. According to Salam News, Esfahani said that even if Ahmadinejad showed up in the middle of his performance, he would walk off stage.
The report states that the organizers of the event have been trying to reach an agreement with another pop singer, such as Mohammad Eftekhari, to replace Esfahani. Organizers debated a change in schedule and delayed the time of the Iranian president's attendance at the ceremony.