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Iran Press Review: 17 Sept.

Politics

  • Fars News Agency reports that reformists are seeking to poach the current conservative Speaker of Iran’s Parliament [Majlis]. The analysis contrasted the historical approach of reformists toward Ali Larjani and noted: "today, they [reformists] speak of a coalition with him [Ali Larijani], a coalition for the future parliament."
  • Ayatollah Ahmad Alam al-Hoda, Assembly of Experts member, says it was Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei who ordered the prohibition of fast internet.
  • Hassan Khomeini, grandson of the founder of the Islamic Republic Ayatollah Khomeini, addresses the professors of Khomeini's Political Testament, and complains of "distortion" of the thoughts of his grandfather:
    • "Today, there are those who speak as if the people did not play any role in the Imam's school of thought. There are also those who let as if Islamism was sidelined by the Imam! No, the Imam who says the [regime] must be judged by popular vote, is the same person who also puts forward the theory of the guardianship of the jurist. The same Imam who defined the 'Absolute' rule for the guardian jurist. In his political and intellectual thought, he provides the people with the highest place."

Foreign Policy

  • Fars News Agency highlights and translates an op-ed from Monday’s Montreal Gazette (Canada) by Sergio Marchi and Ken Lewis which supports Canada’s return to Iran.
    • The original can be found here.
  • Tasnim News Agency reports that the "a team of Iranian lawmakers will pay a visit to Britain."
  • The AP reports: "French judges have thrown out terrorism-linked charges against nine members of an exiled Iranian opposition group, closing a case that began 11 years ago with mass arrests that provoked several deaths by protesters setting themselves afire."
  • Tasnim News Agency reports: "Tehran’s City Council voiced preparedness to help Qatar in preparation work for the 2022 FIFA World Cup, due to be held in the Arab country."
  • Asr-e Iran praises the one year long official use of Facebook as a public diplomacy tool. 
  • Mohammad-Mehdi Mazaheri, an academic and adviser to Iran’s foreign minister, warns in an interview with Jomhouri-ye Eslami against drawing hasty conclusions with regards to the West's sanctions against Russia and urges the government to "keep all the options open."
  • Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif criticizes Norway for expelling Iranian students studying sensitive academic disciplines in that country.

Military and Security

  • Bahram Bayravand, an Iranian Parliamentarian representing Boroujerd comments on American action against the Islamic State (IS/Daesh) and its alleged origins:
    • "If the Americans have intentions to confront their creation, meaning Daesh, it is sufficient (for America) to cut off their access to training camps and their financial resources."
    • "Daesh are ration-eaters and agents of America, England, and Israel’s security systems."
  • The conservative Mashregh News website ran a review of Iran’s newspapers and noted the following regarding "A claim that a Daesh member in Iran was apprehended."
  • "The Jahan News site which is linked to Alireza Zakani claimed ‘Daesh had chosen an Amir for Iran however a security entity apprehended him and his followers.’"
  • The summary by Mashregh states: "Media outlets linked to the Al-Saud in the past weeks have discussed this calim that the Islamic Republic of Iran has taken back the Iraq portfolio from Major General Qassem Soleimani; the “Al-Safir” newspaper discussed this in a report on the behind-the-scenes making of this claim."
  • Mashregh News further highlighted comments published in Lebanon’s Al-Safir newspaper about the Commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds-Force (IRGC-QF) Qassem Soleimani in lieu of recent statements by other outlets about his alleged losing of the Iraq portfolio:    
  • "It's comic that the states which armed, supported, trained and financed the terrorist groups suddenly desire to fight them! Of course, any state which sincerely declares that it will fight against terrorism from now on, and repents, should be believed." 
  • "In the first place, the United States fights against the independence and territorial integrity of the [regional] states, and the fight against IS only comes second... John Kerry himself said the Islamic Republic constitutes a greater threat to the United States than the IS... This is the vocabulary of Henry Kissinger, adviser to the center of the Jews, called AIPAC... Apart from this, the United States only expressed its will to fight the IS... coupled with its demands of change in the composition of the Iraqi government... In the name of fighting against the IS, the United States is trying to sabotage the struggle of The Resistance against the IS... The United States will do so by provoking a Shi'a/Sunni civil war in Iraq."
  • Azer News reports: "An Iranian army commander said the armed forces will unveil two new achievements in the near future. Commander of the Iranian Army's Ground Forces, Brigadier General Ahmadreza Pourdastan said a new tank with cannon and a new 23-milimters weapon will be unveiled soon, IRNA news agency reported on September 17."
  • President Hassan Rouhani receives the North Korean foreign minister: 
  • Kayhan editorializes about the "real goals" of the United States' fight against IS:
  • Ali-Asghar Ahmadi, a Khatami-era deputy interior minister, criticizes Ansar-e Hezbollah's intentions to patrol the streets to enforce the Islamic dress code as "interference in the work of the executive branch."

Nuclear Issue 

  • Noted Parliamentarian Ala al-Din Boroujerdi comments on nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1:
    • "In the even that America insists on its excessive demands, negotiations cannot reach a good end."
    • "The basis of nuclear negotiations between Iran and the 5+1 are, defense of Iran’s national interests in the framework of international regulations, the N.P.T. treaty, and Agency (IAEA) regulations."
  • Seyyed Abbas Eraqchi, the Foreign Ministry’s Legal and International Affairs Deputy told the press that:
  • "Negotiations will be held on Wednesday and Thursday and will be in the form of bilateral and multilateral [talks]."
  • "That which is certain is the preservation of the rights of the people of Iran and the preservation of the accomplishments of [our] nuclear scientists as our red-line."
  • "Let me stress how significant this imperative is. An Iran armed with nuclear weapons would have the ability to project devastating power far beyond its borders, threaten Israel, and further assist violent extremists. If Tehran developed a nuclear weapon, other countries in the region might well pursue the same goal, generating a potentially catastrophic nuclear arms race and intensifying the sectarian divide that is a major source of Middle East tension."
  • "For these reasons, President Obama has pledged that Iran will not be allowed to acquire a nuclear weapon. Since late last year, I have been leading the U.S. negotiating team that is seeking a diplomatic path to that objective. The talks, which have been extended through November 24 and are chaired by the EU High Representative Cathy Ashton, include Iran, Germany, and the five permanent members of the Security Council. America’s purpose in the negotiation is to develop a plan of lasting duration that would block all of the Islamic Republic’s potential paths to a nuclear weapon."
  • "Thus far, we can say on the positive side that our talks have been serious and that we have identified potential answers to some key questions. However, to get to a comprehensive agreement, we remain far apart on other core issues, including the size and scope of Iran’s uranium enrichment capacity. I fully expect in the days ahead that Iran will try to convince the world that on this pivotal matter, the status quo – or its equivalent – should be acceptable. It is not. If it were, we wouldn’t be involved in this difficult and very painstaking negotiation. The world will agree to suspend and then lift sanctions only if Iran takes convincing and verifiable steps to show that its nuclear program is and will remain entirely peaceful. We must be confident that any effort by Tehran to break out of its obligations will be so visible and time-consuming that the attempt would have no chance of success. The ideas we have presented to Iran uphold this standard, and are also fair, flexible, and consistent with Iran’s civilian nuclear needs and scientific knowhow."
  • Undersecretary for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman commented on Iran’s nuclear program in a speech at Georgetown University last night:

Religion, Society, and Culture

  • Ayatollah Mohammad-Ali Gorgani cautioned Iran’s youth against enemy plots:
    • "The youth must be careful against the temptations of the enemy, and to not bargain over their religion for a small price."
    • "The youth must be careful of the enemy’s adorned outer appearance, for they have an ugly internal appearance."
  • Resalat-News reports a headline citing Iran’s Statistical Center which claims: "Iran’s population has passed the border of 77,700,000 people."
  • Reuters reports: "The long running saga over Carlos Queiroz's future with Iran finally ended on Tuesday with the former Real Madrid and Portugal manager agreeing a four-year extension to stick with the Asian side. Queiroz had said he would step down from the position upon their World Cup exit in June, complaining of a one-sided relationship with the Iranian Football Federation."
  • Abbas Akhoundi, Iran’ Minister for Roads and Development states that: "12 aircraft will be added to the country’s air vessels."

Daily Picture(s)

  • Islamic Republic News Agency displays a photo of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani presiding over a cabinet meeting.
  • Fars News Agency displays a picture of a meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Azerbaijan’s Minister of Economy and Trade.
  • Test of the Gotvand Dam in Khuzestan province, as shown in a picture by Iranian Students News Agency.