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Iran Press Review: 17 Oct.

Analysis by FDD

  • Research Fellow Tony Badran penned an article in NOW: "The Islamic Republic of Iran is managing an aggressive information campaign capitalizing on President Obama’s war against the Islamic State group (ISIS). Recognizing that Obama’s priority of combatting ISIS and Sunni extremism has created a huge opening for them, the Iranians have charged right through, high stepping all the way to the end zone. Tehran is pressing its advantage to portray itself as the indispensable manager of regional security, while also having a great time deriding the US and its regional allies. In that sense, the Iranian campaign is as much about messaging as it is about trolling."

Politics

  • Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami, the temporary Friday Prayer leader of Tehran stated in his sermon today:
    • "The sedition of 2009 was in reality opposition to the republicanism of the regime. The vanquished in the election would say: Because we did not reach the vote, the election must be dismissed. This is opposition to republicanism, and the wise Leader of the Revolution defended it. They insulted the late imam, and attacked mosques, killed people. This sedition burned the capital of the revolution... Now I feel there are some who are claiming that the sedition was nothing important... but the Supreme Leader says the sedition was our red line."
  • Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, the head of Iran’s Guardian Council appeared on the Shenasnameh TV show and proclaimed:
    • On experiences pertaining to [13]88, the year of the Green Movement: "We used the experience of 88 (2009) which were severely difficult and bad. That experience for us was obvious that we must pay attention and we were very careful that these events would not be repeated. I can’t really explain [further]."

Foreign Policy

  • Elsewhere in his Friday Prayer Sermon, Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami condemned the decision of Saudi authorities to sentence Ayatollah Nimr to death:
    • "Ayatollah Namr's crime is to support the revolution, the guardianship of the jurist, demanding the right to life to Shi'a in Saudi Arabia. This is considered a crime in Saudi Arabia! This ruling has been issued in ignorance and injustice. The human rights authorities who criticize execution of murderers in the regime of the Islamic Republic and who claim such things are contrary to human rights, did not protest against this death sentence issued by the Saudi government. This is the type of human rights which the United States likes... But I say to the Saudi government... execution of this free cleric has dire consequences and you will pay a high price."
  • Fars News Agency reports statements by Ayatollah Nouri Hamadani after his meeting with a member of Lebanese Hezbollah’s Central-Committee:
    • Commenting on the Saudi decision against Nimr: "If this act is carried out, there will be numerous objections in Islamic countries and the Islamic world will stand against [Saudi] Arabia."
    • Commenting on the Takfiri threat: "They are a problem that we face and we must be careful."
  • Resalat-News ran a headline yesterday citing Mohammad-Saleh Jokar, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s [Majlis] National Security and Foreign Policy Committee who said, "[Saudi] Arabia is the spiritual father of terrorists." He continued, saying:
    • "It has been many years now that [Saudi] Arabia has been directly financing and supporting Takfiri terrorists, and these terrorists have committed the worst human atrocities during the past century in Syria and Iraq."
  • Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports: "The secretary of Russian President Vladimir Putin's Security Council will reportedly visit Iran early next week. The Russian news agency Interfax cited a source as saying Nikolai Patrushev is expected to discuss bilateral cooperation, regional security and the issue of Iran's nuclear program during meetings with Iranian officials."

Military and Security

  • Fars News Agency continues its tracking of English-language press about Major General Qassem Soleimani (the Commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds-Force), reporting about a piece in the International Business Timesfrom October 15, 2014.
  • The website of the Ministry of Intelligence releases a 200-pagereport on the 30th anniversary of the establishment of the Ministry in Iran.
  • Brigadier General Seyyed Massoud Jazayeri who serves as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Basij and Cultural Defense of the Iran’s Armed Forces exclaims:
    • "In the past three years, America has used the biggest terrorist current in the world against the circle of resistance in the region to exclude them, but the resistance of the government and people of Syria has prevented America and its partners from reaching this satanic goal."
    • "America, by using DAESH (the Persian/Arabic acronym for the Islamic State - IS) in the past and at present, under the auspices of combating DAESH, has been after eliminating the capability and foundations of Syria."
  • Mehr News Agency reports comments by Hojjat al-Eslam Ali Saedi, the Representative of the Supreme Leader to the IRGC:
    • "We must see what threats face the Islamic Revolution today; up until the year 2005 Americans were after a war of civilizations which was indicated by the formal and overt presence of that country in conflicts, but they slowly realized that they must promote wars within civilizations or in other words clashes between Islamic sects."
    • "In truth, the West is after a proxy war where such countries as [Saudi] Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey fight instead of America."
  • Defa Press reported comments by Farzad Esmaeli, the Commander of the Khattam al-Anbiya Air Defense Base on Iran’s Artesh [National Army] saying:
    • "The difference between our army and other armies of the world is that in addition to all the things that they have, we have [an] ideological-political [bureau] that tells us with which idea and policy an air-defense officer must grow with."

Nuclear Issue

  • Defa Press reports that starting tomorrow evening, a new TV program will commence at 22:15 about "enemies creating disorder in Iran’s nuclear industry."
  • Press TV reports: "Iran has been prepared for all scenarios regarding the potential outcomes of negotiations with six world powers over Tehran’s nuclear energy program, an Iranian intelligence official says. "Since the talks with the P5+1 (group of world powers) are likely to result in either agreement, extension or deadlock, the necessary strategies have been designed and we have plans for every one of them," the head of Iran’s Intelligence Ministry’s Center for Strategic Studies said at a Thursday ceremony."
  • Resalat News reported comments by Abed Fattahi, a parliamentarian from Urumia in support of Iran’s nuclear negotiating team yesterday.

Economy

  • Mehr News Agency runs a headline reporting that "8 petro-refineries will be built in Assaluyeh."
  • Fars News Agency reports that: "Iran has considerably increased its alloy steel output in the first half of the current Iranian year (March 21-September 22), a report said. Alloy steel production reached 225,000 tons in the first six months of the current year showing a 17-percent rise as compared with last year's corresponding period, a report by the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO) said."
  • Reuters reports: "BP will restart the Rhum gas field in the UK North Sea, half-owned by Iran's National Oil Company, four years after the field was shut down due to Western sanctions, a BP spokesman said on Friday. Production from the field, which supplied 4 percent to 5 percent of Britain's demand before its shutdown, is expected to begin this weekend."
  • Reuters reports: "Indian refiners will pay $500 million to Iran next week, the second installment in an interim deal that allows Tehran to recover part of overseas frozen oil revenues that are payments for oil it has sold, two industry sources said in Friday. Iran and the United States, China, France, Germany, Britain and Russia agreed in July to extend a six-month interim accord until Nov. 24 after they failed to meet a July 20 deadline for reaching a long-term deal to end their nuclear dispute."

Human Rights

  • The Washington Post reported yesterday: "Tehran is the seat where most of Iran’s artistic community resides and hopes to one day thrive, despite the tremendous censorship restrictions regarding who can perform and under which circumstances. Navigating these restrictions has become an art form itself, while social media sites (at least those that are allowed) are continuously monitored. Iran has very strict censorship rules regarding women’s appearance, and which topics are permitted to be discussed openly. Anything cultural or artistic that has the intention of being presented to the masses must first receive authorization and approval from the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance before it can proceed into production…"
  • The Executive Director of the Boroumand Foundation wrote inThe Huffington Post: "Iranians aspired to look past the scandal and violence associated with the 2009 presidential elections in the weeks and months after President Hassan Rouhani's ascent to office last year. His campaign platform of "hope and prudence" led many citizens to believe that his election would be a first step to bring the long awaited changes necessary to improve the country's troubling human rights situation."

Daily Picture(s)

  • Naseron reports a pro-Khamenei rally in Turkey, providing a photo via Asr Iran.
  • Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami gives a Sermon and leads Friday Prayers in Tehran today, photo via Fars News Agency.
  • Fars News Agency provided photos from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s meeting with the Ramezan Abdullah, the Secretary-General of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) in Tehran yesterday.