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04 Jun 2010 14:24No Comments

Press Roundup provides a selected summary of news from the Iranian press, and excerpts where the source is in English. A related link is provided at the top of each item. Tehran Bureau has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy. Please refer to the Media Guide to help put the story in perspective. You can follow other news stories through our Twitter feed.

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Majlis Hardliner: Hassan Khomeini Must Fall in Line

Fars | June 4, 2010

In an interview with Fars news, Ismael Koosri, a Majlis representative and member of the executive committee on national security, criticized Hassan Khomeini for his speech on the anniversary of Imam Khomeini's passing.

Koosri said that Iran's enemies are always trying to divide it's people and that "Hassan Khomeini should have come to the people and condemned the fitna [sedition] and all related events after the election. He should have fallen in line with others, but he did not do this and in this case, the audience certainly did not see a beautiful scene."

Hassan Khomeini, who has openly articulated his support for the green movement, was shouted down during his speech honoring his grandfather's passing.

Khomeini Grandson Heckled As Khamenei, Ahmadinejad Warn Reformists

REF/RL | June 4, 2010

Religious hard-liners shouted down the grandson of the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini at a state ceremony marking the 21st anniversary of the Iranian spiritual leader's death in protest at his support for Iran's reformist opposition.

Crowds shouted "Death to Musavi," in reference to reformist leader Mir Hossein Musavi, according to the hard-line Fars news agency, and chanted slogans in support of Khomeini's successor, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The outcry, in his grandfather's shrine in Tehran, was in response to Hassan Khomeini's outspoken support for Musavi and Mehdi Karrubi in their insistence that last June's reelection of President Mahmud Ahmadinejad was tainted by ballot fraud.

Karroubi: Iran regime being ruined

AFP | June 4, 2010

Opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi said that Iran's Islamic regime was being ruined, after he faced the fury of hardliners when he appeared at the shrine of late revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, reports said.

Fars news agency reported late Thursday that Karroubi reached the shrine in south Tehran to pay homage on the 21st death anniversary of Khomeini which falls on Friday.

But the report said hardliners heckled him and shouted slogans "Death to Hypocrites!" and "We are not people of Kufa to leave Ali alone!" after which Karroubi's bodyguards took him away from the mausoleum.

Karroubi, who along with Mir Hossein Mousavi is spearheading the opposition movement in Iran, later said on his website Sahamnews that the country's Islamic regime was being ruined.

"They speak in a way as if Imam (Khomeini) belongs to them only and others have broken path with the Imam," said the reformist cleric who in the past was considered as one of the pillars of the regime.

"Whoever objects to fraud in election is accused of being a Mossad or CIA agent. The fate of election is in the hands of Basijis (Islamist militia) and Sepah (Revolutionary Guards)," he said.

"I am worried about the Islamic aspect of the regime. They have ruined the republic side of the regime in the name of Islam."

Secretly Filmed, Neda Documentary Goes Viral in Iran

Guardian | June 4, 2010

Iran is jamming satellite broadcasts by Voice of America in attempts to stop people from seeing a new film featuring the first film interviews with the family of Neda Agha-Soltan, the young woman who was shot dead during the mass protests that followed last summer's disputed presidential election.

Iran's intelligence ministry is reportedly due soon to release its own documentary to complete the removal of "ambiguities" surrounding the murder and provide "new evidence" about what it has called the west's version of events.

Neda's family were under pressure to co-operate with the official documentary but refused to do so. Two of her friends were forced to participate. An earlier state produced film suggested that Neda was an agent of the US and Britain who staged her own death and poured blood on her face. The BBC's Tehran correspondent, Jon Leyne, was also blamed for her killing before being expelled.

Karim Sadjadpour Marks Election Anniversary

Carnegie Endowment | June 2, 2010

Despite the government's crisis of legitimacy and endemic mismanagement, the Green Movement - nominally led by opposition presidential candidates Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi - faces major obstacles. Their brain trust is either in prison, under virtual house arrest, or unable to communicate freely. They lack organization and strategy.

Mousavi and Karroubi's excessive reliance on street protests is misguided. While their courageous supporters espouse tolerance and practice non-violence, they are overwhelmed by armed government forces who are willing to kill and die to retain power.

If the Green Movement is to mount a serious challenge to the government it must incorporate support from bazaar merchants, workers in major industries, transportation unions, and government workers. Sustained strikes by these groups would bring the country's economy to a halt. This is a tall order, however, given that Iran's labor groups, while deeply discontented, are just as amorphous as the Green Movement itself.

Iranian scholars condemn Israeli attack

BBC Persian | June 3, 2010

A group of leading Iranian scholars and activists signed a statement condemning the Israeli commando raid on Monday on a ship challenging Israel's naval blockade of Gaza and in support of the freedom movements in Palestine and Iran. It reads:

The May 31, 2010, Israeli army raid on the flotilla bringing food and medical supplies for the oppressed people in Gaza and the cruel killing of several humanitarian and peaceful activists on board of those ships in international waters once again revealed the militant nature of the occupiers of Palestinian lands. The world community at large deplores Israel's disrespect for international laws. Some governments have rightly summoned the Israeli ambassadors in their countries to convey their objections. Conscientious people all over the world have raised their voices in support of the Palestinian people to register their call for justice, hoping to prevent further oppression.

Based on its goals of support for freedom, democracy, and the basic rights of all people, the Iranian Green Movement supports freedom movements all over the world and in particular the Palestinian national liberation struggle. The Green Movement finds similarities between the violence exhibited by the occupying regime of Israel and the suppressive regime of the Islamic Republic, and denounces both of these oppressive regimes. Neither of the regimes hesitates to shoot peaceful people and often employs the most violent means to repress those who seek freedom. Both these regimes are in a race to ignore the citizens' rights and disrespect the judgment of the international community.

As a small segment of the Iranian people's Green Movement, we the undersigned, condemn the warmongering of the Israeli regime and its military's cruelty. We will continue to support the Iranian people's demand for civil rights along with the admirable and brave struggle of the Palestinian people for freedom and democracy.

Signed by: Ervand Abrahamian, Dariush Ashuri, Nasrin Almasi, Kaveh Ehsani, Mohammad A'zami, Fariba Amini, Bahman Amini, Ali Afshari, Abdulali Bazargan, Golbarg Bashi, Reza Baraheni, Mohammad Borghei, Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Sohrab Behdad, Maziar Behrouz, Asef Bayat, Shahrnoush Parsipour, Ali Porsan, Foad Taban, Kamran Talatoff, Mohamad Tavakoli-Targhi, Nayereh Tohidi, Mehdi Khanbaba-Tehrani, Mehdi Jami, Ramin Jahanbegloo, Houshang Hasan-Yari, Fatemeh Haghighatjou, Behrouz Khaligh, Hamid Dabashi, Mostafa Rokhsefat, Saeed Rezvi-Faghih, Hossein Zahedi, Faraj Sarkohi, Bijan Shah-Moradi, Ma'soumeh Shafiee, Shahla Salehpour, Ahmad Sadri, Mahmoud Sadri, Behzad Karimi, Kazem Alamdari, Reza Allamehzadeh, Reza Fani Yazdi, Masoud Fathi, Mansour Farhang, Hadi Ghaemi, Hossein Ghaziyan, Firouz Ghoreyshi, Mehrangiz Kar, Naser Kakhsaz, Kazem Kordevani, Ali Keshtgar, Abdi Kalantari, Hossein Kamaly, Taghi Kimiyaee-Assadi, Effat Mahbaz, Akbar Mehdi, Mojtaba Mahdavi, Shirin Neshat, Akbar Ganji, Majid Mohammadi, Mehrdad Mashayekhi, Ali Akbar Mosavi-Khoeyni, Roozbeh Mir-Ebrahimi, Ali Mirsepassi, Ghofour Mirzayi, Mohsen Namjou, Ebrahim Nabavi, Mehdi Noorbakhsh, Shahin Najafi, Farhad Na'mani, Mohammad-Reza Nikfar, Farzin Vahdat, Nader Hashemi, Mohseh Yalfani


Ahmadinejad's Sugar Daddy

Foreign Policy | June 3, 2010

Why would Brazil, otherwise a U.S. ally, insist on cozying up to Iran to the detriment of its relations closer to home? Perhaps the most intriguing, and strategic, aspect of those trade relations has to do with sugar.

Brazil is the world's largest sugar grower. Because sugar cane is a perishable crop that cannot be stored, the best way for Brazil to generate value from its undervalued surplus is by converting it into ethanol, of which Brazil is already the second-largest producer. For Tehran, Brazil's surplus ethanol could be a strategic savior. Iran is a major exporter of crude oil, but lacks the refinery capacity to process most of it; as a result, the second-largest oil producer in OPEC depends on other countries' exports of refined gasoline.

Brazil could replace most of the 5.8 million gallons of gasoline that Iran imports daily and doing so would pull the teeth out of the gasoline sanctions legislation, rendering it useless before it even reaches President Barack Obama's desk.

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