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18 Nov 2009 19:375 Comments

Iran protesters sentenced to death

Al Jazeera | Nov. 18, 2009

Iran has sentenced five people to death and 81 others to prison terms of up to 15 years in a mass trial of opposition figures accused of fomenting the unrest that followed June's disputed presidential election, state television says.

A statement from the justice department, carried on the state-owned IRIB broadcaster, said on Tuesday that the five sentenced to death were members of "terrorist and armed opposition groups".

"So far, 89 of defendants were tried and based on their cases, death sentences were issued for five of them." the statement said.

It said 81 people were sentenced to prison terms ranging from six months to 15 years for offences including security violations, agitating against the Islamic Republic, violating law and order, damaging public and private property, and assaulting civilians and security forces.

Three people were acquitted.

Sipa CEO confirms family relations with Mashai

Khabar | Nov. 17, 2009

The new Sipa football team CEO told the popular "90" sports show host Adel Ferdosipour on live television that he is related to Esfandyar Rahim-Mashai, the controversial head of the president's office.

Arash Kusha, who was appointed to the new position despite having no background in sports, was asked about his family's rumored ties to Mashai.

"I am related to Mr. Mashai, but I'm not his nephew," Kusha said.

Kusha lists several managerial positions on his resume, all of which he assumed after Mashai's appointment as head of the presidential office.

Bushehr plant 'to come on stream in coming months'

Press TV

After Moscow said that a Russian-built nuclear power plant in Iran would not go online by the end of 2009 as planned, a top Iranian nuclear official says the plant will be completed within months.

Earlier on Monday, Russia announced that due to technical problems its engineers are not able to start up the reactor at the Bushehr plant, Iran's first nuclear power station, by the year's end.

"We expect major results by the end of the year, but the launch will not take place," Interfax quoted Russian Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko as saying.

Moscow had previously announced that the power plant, located in Iran's southern city of Bushehr, would be up and running by the end of 2009.

Afghan newspaper's depiction of Ahmadinejad ruffles feathers

Peymane | Nov. 17, 2009

The Afghan Hasht-e-Sobh daily lashed out at Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, accusing him of exploiting impoverished people.

In an article called "The Islamic Republic and the Story of the Old Man and the Sea," the daily said that Ahmadinejad was like "one of the world's many Sultans who empty the treasury, not to render the frontier region habitable, but to bring it under his own control."

The article also accused Ahmadinejad of forcing "the impoverished to run after his car."

"And they run," it continued, "and bump into other passersby in the process, creating chaos and rising dust as they go," an apparent reference to Ahmadinejad's provincial tours where Iranian citizens often run after his car to show support or pass him letters of request.

The Peymane website criticized the daily for slandering Ahmadinejad and said diplomatic channels should be used to take action against the Afghan newspaper.

MP: Kahrizak physician death will be investigated

ISNA | Nov.17, 2009

Tehran representative to Majlis Ali Motahari told ISNA reporters that the recent suspicious death of Ramin Pourandarjani, physician at Kahrizak detention center, would be investigated by the same committee tasked with investigating the attacks at Tehran University dormitories and Sobhan residential complex this past summer.

Asked whether he believed bringing to justice those responsible for the crimes that occurred at Kahrizak would pacify society, Motahari said, "Officials say this case is in its final stage. Once trial verdicts are announced, I'm sure people will be satisfied with the results."

Iran hangs rapist in public: report

AFP | Nov. 17, 2009

Iran has hanged a convicted rapist in a public square in the northern city of Qaemshahr in the Caspian Sea Mazandaran province, the Kayhan newspaper reported on Monday.

The report identified the man hanged on Sunday as A.B. aged 24, who was convicted of raping his victim after posing as a taxi driver. The report also said he had a prior criminal record which included robbery, kidnapping and engaging in an illicit relationship.

The reported public hanging comes despite a January 2008 statement by then Iran judiciary chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi that such executions would only be carried out with his approval and "based on social necessities."

Iran summons Argentinean envoy

Press TV | Nov. 13, 2009

The Iranian Foreign Ministry has summoned the Argentinean chargé d'affairs to protest an attempt by the country's former diplomat to plunder "Persian treasures."

Argentina's former counselor to Iran Sebastian Zavala was stopped by Iranian customs officials as he was about to leave the country upon the termination of his post.

Iranian authorities delivered a formal letter of complaint to Argentinean chargé d'affairs Mario Enrique Quinteros on Wednesday, criticizing the former envoy's "undignified act carried out against diplomatic, cultural commitments."

Unnamed source: Larijani seeking to overthrow Ahmadinejad

Sahar News | Nov. 17, 2009

The son of an influential Iranian figure has reportedly informed his friends of efforts to change the political balance in the country.

An "informed source" told Javanonline that the unnamed politician's son had pointed to meetings between his father and a number of political activists.

The person in question claimed that his father was of the opinion that Mohammad Khatami, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi would no longer be able to head the beleaguered Reform Movement.

He then claimed that his father had approached a high-ranking official, Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani, and proposed that he find ways to attract the Reformists to himself.

According to the Javanonline source, the unnamed politician's son had gone on to criticize the Ahmadinejad government, calling it illegal. He concluded by alleging that Larijani was seeking to overthrow it.

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Finally they going to Extirpate themselves.

Faraz Amiralaei / November 19, 2009 7:27 AM

I am afraid the lenient sentences granted the other 81 defendents don't preclude them dying in jail of a heart attack.By the way, has Khamenie ever granted a commutation in the past? If so I have never heard of it. I suppose his infallable judgement means he never has second thoughts. Mao commented once, in respect of capital punishment that a head once severed could never be reattached.But Mao was an atheist.

pirooz / November 20, 2009 8:03 AM

Do you really think the isralies will all Iran to actually start up a nuke reactor. Remember what they did when Iraq was about to get there first one up and online?

Tom Schuster / November 26, 2009 11:14 AM

Evil. As a Brazilian, i wonder what is President Lula doing with Iran. They should not be aloud to do any business with Brazil.

Luiz / November 27, 2009 4:53 AM

Tom, It is not for Israelis to have a decision on Iranian nukes.That is a decision by the Iranian people, although I would like to see a change in the Regime of Iran.
Luiz, what do you mean they (Iran) should not be aloud? That is none of your business. If you do not want your country or president to do business with Iran then you need to do something about it on your end. Your approach is backwards.

Iran_parast / December 4, 2009 12:06 PM