Headlines: Attack or No Attack?
04 Aug 2010 17:26
Iranian media say president's convoy attacked
A conservative Iranian website said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad escaped an assassination attempt after a handmade grenade exploded near his convoy on Wednesday, but Tehran state TV denied the report.
Other media reported an explosion in the area but gave conflicting accounts about the cause. Some said it was a firecracker.
The website, khabaronline.ir, said the grenade detonated near Ahmadinejad's convoy as he was on his way to address a crowd in the western Iranian town of Hamedan but did not harm him.
The president later gave his speech as planned, and it was broadcast live on state television. He made no mention of the attack in his remarks, focusing instead on the country's disputed nuclear program.
Iran Denies Reports of Attack on Ahmadinejad
NYT | Aug 4, 2010
Iran rigorously denied reports on Wednesday that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had been the target of a grenade attack.
Press TV, the state-run satellite broadcaster, quoted an unidentified "informed source" in the presidential office as saying the reports were false.
"Some foreign news sources published reports that a grenade exploded near the motorcade of President Ahmadinejad during his visit to the western city of Hamedan on Wednesday," Press TV said. "The source denied the allegation, saying no such attack had happened."
The denial came amid a confusing series of reports and rumors sweeping Tehran.
Ahmadinejad unhurt after blast near motorcade
Reuters | Aug 4, 2010
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was unharmed by an attack with a homemade explosive device on his motorcade during a visit to the western city of Hamadan on Wednesday, a source in his office said.
The source said Ahmadinejad's convoy was targeted as he was traveling from Hamadan's airport to give a speech in a local sports arena. The president was unhurt but others had been injured in the blast. One person was arrested.
"There was an attack this morning. Nothing happened to the president's car," the source told Reuters. "Investigations continue ... to find out who was behind it."
Oil falls towards $82
Reuters | Aug 4, 2010
Oil fell on Wednesday for the first day in five as a rally that powered prices to three-month highs near $83 a day earlier lost steam, with little reaction to an attack on Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Analysts said the market was cautious about moving on the initial reports of the attack.
"Prices haven't moved today but we've just had a very strong rally," said Paul Harris, head of natural resources risk management at Bank of Ireland. "Geopolitical risk from the Middle East is broadly priced in." "I expect that any backlash there might be from Ahmadinejad will be far more important to the oil market than the initial attack itself," he added.
UNHCR: Lawyer who defended Iranian woman in stoning case is in Turkey
AP | Aug 4, 2010
The lawyer of a woman who had been sentenced to death by stoning in Iran is in Turkey and has the option of applying for asylum, the U.N.'s refugee agency said Wednesday.
The lawyer, Mohammad Mostafaei, went missing after being questioned by judicial officials at Tehran's Evin prison for several hours on July 23, according to Amnesty International.
Mostafaei apparently surfaced in Turkey and was detained because of a passport problem after entering the country, Turkey's Radikal newspaper said Wednesday. It gave no source for the report and there was no information on when he was detained or where he was being held. Iranian nationals do not require visas to enter Turkey.
Explosion Kills 5 At Iranian Petrochemical Plant-Agencie
WSJ | Aug 4, 2010
A massive explosion killed five workers Wednesday in a giant energy complex in Southern Iran, Iranian agencies said, the second such incident in less than two weeks.
Iranian sources: A drone fell next to the Boushehr Nuke Plant
Sources in western Iran told newspaper Asharq al-Awsat that a drone plane fell next to a number of nuclear and military facilities.
The plane fell within the site of the Boushehr Nuclear Plant and it is believed to be Iranian made. The accident occurred last Sunday and the plane might have been one of the drones recently constructed by Iran as part of its military arsenal. "We cannot exclude the possibility that the Americans or the Israelis might have attacked the plane but we have no proof of that as of now," the paper opined. [Iran confirmed the report of the crash, attributing it to a domestic military maneuver. ed.]
Relocation of offices outside Tehran not viable: MP
Mehr | Aug 4, 2010
Relocation of government bodies outside the capital Tehran is impossible, costly, and not viable, MP Ali-Akbar Olia stated on Wednesday.
Following a directive ratified by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his ministers, the administration has set a deadline of August 22 for all executive administrative offices to relocate at least 40 percent of their personnel outside the capital.
Olia expressed regret that Administrative Supreme Council which can study such issues does not hold its sessions, so Majlis is not fully informed of the details about implementation of the plan.
NYT | Aug 4, 2010
There is a purpose behind Khamenei's increasing public attempts to assert his self-proclaimed religious authority. As the supreme leader feels more and more threatened by Iran's clerical establishment -- which is increasingly challenging his ability to lead an Islamic state, particularly in the aftermath of the June 2009 presidential election -- he becomes more abrasive and outspoken in an attempt to assert his questionable religious credentials. His fatwa two weeks ago, for example, constitutes heresy in the view of some theologians who believe no one can claim to represent the Prophet on earth.