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Iran Press Review: 15 Sept.

Politics

  • According to Sharq, the reformist camp led by Mohammad Khatami is aligning itself with the technocratic faction of Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani for the March 2016 parliamentary election. 
  • Kayhan newspaper praises the "information management" concerning Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei's hospitalization. 
  • Reuters reports that: "Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, 75, left hospital on Monday a week after undergoing prostate surgery, state television reported. Official media said he was in good health."

Foreign Policy

  • President Hassan Rouhani's attendance at the United Nations General Assembly is now official. He is expected to address the General Assembly on September 25th. 
  • Fars News Agency runs part of President Hassan Rouhani’s schedule for the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
  • Dr. Ali-Akbar Velayati, a former Minister of Foreign Affairs and current advisor to Supreme Leader Khamenei exclaims that:
    • "The Secretary-General of the United Nations has become a tool of the hands of America."
    • Criticizing the Secretary-General over a lack of response to the Islamic State (IS/Daesh): "When Daesh and terrorist groups that in Syria and Iraq kill and take up terrorist actions against the legal governments and people, no serious action on the part of Ban-Ki Moon was taken."
  • Jomhouri-ye Eslami editorializes
  • "In the midst of difficult negotiations with the 5+1 Group, more than anything, Iran needs to tear down the wall of sanctions in order to force the Western counter part to give concessions. Russia is a prominent example of non-Western states which recently has been subjected to European and American sanctions and is very inclined to expand relations with its southern neighbors in order to reduce the pressure from the sanctions regime... which led to the Memorandum of Understanding concerning €70 billion economic relations between the two countries... The experts however, do not believe the maximum level can be reached before five years from now... For example, Russia is in need of agricultural imports and foodstuff. An industry severely damaged by the mismanagement of the previous government [reference to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad]."
  • Behrouz Nemati, a parliamentarian, warns against cooperation with Russia, stressing: "The Russians have shown they are not trustworthy... As soon as the Americans and the Europeans give them a hand of friendship, they will abandon their obligations and promises to Iran."

Military and Security

  • Armed Forces Chief of Staff Major-General Seyyed Hassan Firoozabadi comments on the Paris conference and Western attempts to combat IS:
    • "Whatever action America and its accomplices take in the Paris conference, it must be ironed-out with the legal governments of Syria and Iraq according to international regulations."
    • "Military analysts know that aerial bombardments are not the way to solve combating terrorism."
  • Mohammad-Reza Naqdi, the Commander of Iran’s Basij forces states that: "The command center of Daesh is the White House of America." 
  • Fars News Agency reports segments from an interview featuring Muqtada al-Sadr with an Arabic-language news outlet on developments in Iraq:
  • "Americans due to their decisions, specifically interfering in Iraq, will become regretful."
  • "If Hezbollah and America are on the same page, that page is resistance not cooperation and friendship."
  • "In the past days that I was hospitalized, I amused myself listening to the statements of American officials concerning the fight against the Islamic State. It truly was amusing! That the United States loses faith in Iran's presence in a bad and wrong collective move is a source of pride to us. We cannot find any greater pride than this... At the time of the heavy attacks of the Islamic State against Iraq, the United States ambassador to Iraq, asked our ambassador to Iraq for a joint meeting between Iran and the United States to negotiate and coordinate concerning the issue of the Islamic State... Our Ambassador to Iraq, transmitted this issue to Iran, and some officials did not oppose such a meeting, but I opposed it and said: 'In this issue, we do not cooperate with the Americans, since they have dirty hands and dirty intents. How can we cooperate with the Americans under such circumstances...?' This Secretary of State of the United States had personally asked Dr. [Mohammad-Javad] Zarif for cooperation concerning the Islamic State issue, but Dr. Zarif dismissed his wish... Even the deputy Secretary of State of the United States, who is a woman well known to all, had once again expressed this wish in her negotiations with Mr. Eraqchi, but Mr. Eraqchi too had dismissed her wish... Now they are lying, claiming that we will not allow Iran to join the coalition [against the Islamic State]. However, from the very beginning Iran had declared its opposition to be present in such a coalition... Before, the Americans made a great noise about a multinational coalition against Syria, but they could not do a damned thing. The same will be the case with regard to Iraq... The Americans, and the Islamic State both know that the movement which broke the back of the Islamic State in Iraq was not the deed of the United States, but the popular movement in Iraq, and the Iraqi Army, which had learned how to find the Islamic State and dealt serious blows to it... The reality is that the Americans are looking for a pretext to do in Iraq what they do in Pakistan. In spite of a government in place and a strong Army [of Pakistan] they enter the realm of the state, bomb various points and this is what they want to do in Iraq and Syria... The Americans should know that if they do such a thing, the same problems which they faced in the course of the past ten years in Iraq, will resurface... At any rate, statements of American officials served as amusement as I was confined to the hospital bed."
  • Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei comments on US/Iran cooperation against the Islamic State: 
  • On Saturday, The Washington Post reported that: "Secretary of State John F. Kerry says Iran should not attend a conference about the militant threat that will be held Monday in Paris, although invitations are up to France."
  • Commenting on cooperation with the United States against the Islamic State: "In this regard, one must first take into consideration Iran's position towards the United States and [we will see] how to deal with this phenomenon... We believe one must be serious in the fight against terrorism and we have not seen such seriousness among Americans. When this very groups was active in Syria, the Westerners were silent and in many instances some states were helping terrorist groups. We even witnessed this in Iraq, where these countries were silent." 
  • Takht-e-Ravanchi said the nuclear negotiations with the United States would not encompass talks about the Islamic State. He also dismissed that such a negotiation has taken place in Geneva: "No negotiation took place concerning the Islamic State issue. The Americans just declared their position, and we heard what they had to say. No negotiation took place." 
  • The AP reported this morning that: "As diplomats from around the world sought a global strategy to fight Islamic State extremists, Iran ruled out working with any international coalition, saying it had rejected American requests for cooperation against the militants."
  • Sentiments by Majid Takht-e-Ravanchi, the head of the Europe and America directorate for Iran’s Foreign Ministry and nuclear negotiator: 
  • Voice of America reports: "U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki says it is no secret that the United States has had discussions with Iran about the coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq. But she says U.S. officials "are not and will not coordinate militarily" with Iran in that fight."

Nuclear Issue 

  • Noted nuclear negotiator Abbas Eraqchi comments on the status of negotiations:
    • "We are having bilateral, and negotiations with the 5+1 Group, but our disagreements are serious. We hope the consultations which we have had with the United States, Russia, and China, along with the initiatives Wednesday and Thursday of this week lead to progress... What is certain is preservation of Iran's rights and the nuclear achievements of the Iranian people and the scientists. These are our red lines and are irreversible." 
    • However, Eraqchi concluded: "An agreement in New York is unlikely." 
  • Press TV reports that: "A senior Iranian lawmaker says any possible failure of talks between Iran and six world powers over Tehran’s nuclear energy program would be the result of US excessive demands."
  • Reuters on questions related to Iran’s nuclear history:
  • "The U.N. nuclear watchdog sought to put pressure on Iran on Monday to address suspicions it may have carried out atomic bomb research, three weeks after Tehran failed to meet a deadline for providing information about the issue. In line with the findings of a confidential report by the International Atomic Energy Agency earlier this month, Director General Yukiya Amano said Iran had not carried out two of the five transparency steps it had agreed to implement by Aug. 25."
  • Tasnim News Agency relates that: "An Iranian deputy foreign minister reiterated that an ultimate, comprehensive deal on Tehran’s peaceful nuclear program should result in the annulment of the entire sanctions imposed on the country in the past."

Economy

  • Fars News Agency reports that: "Iranian and Mexican officials signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to pave the way for the establishment of Iran-Mexico Joint Commercial Council in the near future."

Human Rights

  • According to Etemad, Ansar-e Hezbollah vigilante groups are expected to take to the streets of Iran to enforce the Islamic dress code and fight against "bad Hijab [veil]." 
  • On a similar note, Reslat-News citing Mehr News Agency quoted Commander Masood Jazayeri as proclaiming that: "The Secretariat of the Supreme Council on the Cultural Revolution should be continuous in its enforcement of Hijab [veil] and chastity laws."
  • BBC News follows up on the story of the 25 year-old Ms. Ghoncheh Ghavami, reporting: "The family of a British-Iranian woman being held in Iran after going to a men's volleyball match have appealed for her release."
  • A late Friday report from Reuters about the human rights situation in Iran notes: "Iranian President Hassan Rouhani's promises of greater freedoms for the Islamic Republic have not resulted in any major improvements regarding human rights and freedom of expression, the U.N. chief said in a new report on Iran."

Daily Picture(s)

  • Fars News Agency captures a photo of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei leaving the hospital after his surgery.
  • The Police Science University hosts a closing service for the end of another educational session.
  • Pictures via Fars News Agency.
  • Pictures via the University website.
  • Islamic Republic News Agency highlights the meeting between President Rouhani and the Slovak Foreign Minister. Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif (pictured) was also in attendance.