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Selected Headlines

07 Nov 2009 13:501 Comment

Gearing up for 13 Aban (Nov. 4)

Blog Watch | Nov. 7, 2009



Iran media says foreign journalists released from custody

WaPo | Nov. 7, 2009

Iran's judiciary has freed three foreign nationals who were arrested Wednesday during demonstrations on the 30th anniversary of the U.S. Embassy takeover here, state-run media reported Saturday.

"Three foreign nationals, one Canadian and two Germans . . . have been freed," the Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Tehran's prosecutor general, Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi, as saying late Friday.

Iran police detain 109 over rally

BBC | Nov. 7, 2009

More than 100 people were detained for public order offenses after Wednesday's protests in Tehran, officials say. The protests coincided with an official rally to mark 30 years since the storming of the US embassy during the 1979 Islamic revolution.

The 109 people were on the fringes of an opposition-organized demonstration when they were detained. Security spokesman Azizollah Rajabzadeh said 62 are due to face trial while the others were released after questioning.

Prosecutor announces release of some Nov. 4 detainees

Asr Iran | Nov. 7, 2009

Tehran Prosecutor Abbas Jafari-Dolatabadi said a number of those arrested in conjunction with Nov. 4 [rallies] have been released.

The prosecutor's office did not believe in bringing charges against some individuals, he said.

"We are investigating the French news agency's allegations that one of their reporters was arrested," he said.

Dolatabadi said that the court sessions for Ali Tajernia [a former reformist parliamentarian], Saeed Shariati and Ebrahim Amini would be held on Saturday.

"Behzad Nabavi's court hearing is on Sunday and Mohammad-Ali Atrianfar will be arraigned on Monday," he added.

MP: Mousavi more at fault

Asr Iran | Nov. 6

Principlist lawmaker Ali Motahari said until Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad apologize to the nation, calm will not be restored to society.

Speaking on the sidelines of the first meeting of Abadgaran [the young cultivators of Islamic Iran], Motahari said Mousavi and Ahmadinejad must accept their mistakes and apologize.

"In my opinion, of course, Mousavi is more at fault and I believe this move [public apology] will calm the people down," he said. "[If] we look at the issue from one-sided, the issue will remain unresolved and [our] society will not be consoled."

Iran rejects US Treasury sanctions as 'baseless'

IRNA | Nov. 7, 2009

A senior Iranian economic official on Saturday rejected as "baseless" the U.S. Treasury's reasons for sanctioning the Malaysian-based subsidiary of Iran's Bank Mellat, the state IRNA news agency reported.

"America has not communicated specific and justifiable reasons to sanction" First East Export Bank, a Bank Mellat subsidiary based in Malaysia, IRNA cites deputy economic minister Asghar Abolhasani Hastiani as saying.

The United States Treasury Dept. on Thursday imposed sanctions against Iran's Bank Mellat Chairman Ali Divandari and a Malaysian-based Bank Mellat subsidiary, designating them "proliferators of weapons of mass destruction." Divandari was sanctioned for acting on behalf of Bank Mellat.

Abolhasani Hastiani said picking on Bank Mellat for being involved in the Islamic Republic's nuclear program is just a "pretext," IRNA reported.

"All banks throughout the world can invest in sectors that are by deemed permissible by international law... In accordance with the laws of the United Nations, any bank can invest in peaceful nuclear energy," he said, according to IRNA.

MP: Iran to reject UN-brokered plan

AFP | Nov. 7, 2009

Iran has decided to reject proposals from major powers for the supply of nuclear fuel, a leading member of parliament said on Saturday, in a serious setback for UN-brokered efforts to allay Western concerns about its atomic ambitions.

Under the plan thrashed out in talks with France, Russia and the United States, Iran was to have shipped out most of its stocks of low-enriched uranium in return for fuel for a research reactor in Tehran.

Russian President considers backing sanctions if Iran fails to take 'constructive' nuclear stance

AP | Nov. 7, 2009

Russia would back sanctions against Iran if it fails to act constructively in international negotiations over its nuclear program, the Associated Press reported Russian President Dmitry Medvedev as saying in remarks released Saturday.

In an interview with the German weekly magazine, Der Spiegel, Medvedev said Russia is ready to help enrich Iranian uranium if the Islamic Republic agrees to a U.N.-brokered plan end the impasse over its nuclear program, according to the AP.

"If the Iranian leadership takes a less constructive stance, everything is theoretically possible," Medvedev said.

''I wouldn't like to see all that ending in the introduction of international sanctions, as sanctions usually is a step in a very difficult and dangerous direction. But if there is no movement forward, no one is excluding such a scenario," he added.

Former U.S. diplomat, hostage in Tehran takes up Iran post at State

Politico | Nov. 7, 2009

Retired Foreign Service Officer, former hostage in Iran and fluent Farsi speaker -- took up his new position as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Iran this week.

Iran holds foreign reporters over protests coverage

Bloomberg | Nov. 6, 2009

Iran detained several foreign reporters who were covering demonstrations in Tehran on Nov. 4, when opposition supporters used the 30th anniversary of the U.S. Embassy seizure to revive protests over President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's re-election.

Two Canadian and one Japanese reporter were held, the state-run Fars news agency reported today, adding that they were arrested for "unauthorized reporting." It didn't identify the reporters or the media for which they worked.

A Danish journalism student was held in connection with a demonstration two days ago, the Associated Press reported, citing the Danish Union of Journalists. Niels Krogsgaard is a member of the union who went to Iran to write an academic paper on Iranian politics, AP said.

Farhad Pouladi, a reporter for Agence France-Presse, was also detained in Tehran on Nov. 4, AFP said. Two uniformed police officers and one in plain clothes took Pouladi into custody after stopping the motorcycle on which he was a passenger, AFP said.

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1 Comment

A friend whose cousin is a major in the NAJA (Isl. Rep. Security Force) tells me the Guards and other security forces are extremely scared of being sent to Sistan and Balouchestan. What does that says about their state of mind, morale, etc.? What does it say about the way to deal with the problem of Guards and Basij? The Guards and Basij are a political problem for the movement. What to do with them is not a moral issue but a strategic one.

Borzu / November 13, 2009 8:56 AM