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Iran Press Review: 19 Nov.

Analysis by FDD

  • Clifford May, President of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, wrote in The Washington Times: “Negotiations with Iran are set to conclude on Monday. What are the odds they will end with Iran’s rulers agreeing to verifiably dismantle their illicit nuclear weapons program? I’d wager 100 to one against that outcome — but I doubt I’d find a bookie willing to take my bet. If a good deal is out of the question, what are the other options? The first is a “final agreement” that gives Tehran a lot in exchange for a little, but which President Obama would present as a triumph of diplomacy.”

Politics

  • President Hassan Rouhani writes a letter to Executive Leadership of Iran’s Parliament [Majlis] introducing Dr. Mohammad Farhadi, his new nominee to for the Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology (Higher Education).
  • Mohammad Sarafraz, the new head of Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), writes a letter appointing Mohammad-Baqer Zahraie as the new head of Central Security for IRIB.
  • Kayhan’s editorial explains why the Iranian Parliament did not give a vote of confidence to President Rouhani's candidate for Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology:
    • “Doubtlessly, His Excellency Dr. Rouhani, as a seasoned politician and lawyer, knows that the American/Israeli sedition (the name given by hardliners to the Green Movement and its supporters) of 2009 is the red line of the regime, and according to irrefutable documents, the followers of the mentioned sedition, with overt support from the triangle of the United States, Israel and Britain, were trying to topple the regime. He [Rouhani] too has stressed upon [the reality] of this despicable reality. Therefore, it is clear and easily predictable that candidates who were engaged in the sedition cannot expect to obtain a parliamentary vote of confidence.”

Military and Security

  • Mohammad-Reza Naqdi, the Commander of Iran’s Basij Forces,states:
    • “Today, we do not talk about the Basiji’s of Iran, but we speak of  ‘the Basiji’s of the Islamic Ummah [nation],”
    • “The Basij have become a source of inspiration for the world of Islam, and various countries have turned towards the Basij, and they are after the absorption of these experiences.”
    • “Today we are engaged in economic and cultural wars. Today, our priority is that we will never put away military preparedness, and today, the capabilities of the Basij according to the worst estimates are at least 10 times greater than the defense capability that we had during the Holy Defense (the name given in Iran to the Iran-Iraq War.”
  • Mashregh News highlights the “mock-up” of a new fighter plane, the Borhan.
  • Defa Press, citing an advertisement from Sepah News, an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) website, relates a message to “honorable and zealous Iranians outside of the country.” The request is to come up with a name for Iran’s version of the RQ 170 drone, and the outlet provided an email address for sending in each entry.
  • Fars News Agency reports: “The Iranian Navy's 32nd fleet of warships dispatched to the high seas berthed in Djibouti port on Wednesday. The 32nd Fleet of the Iranian Navy, comprising Jamaran destroyer and Bushehr helicopter-carrier warship, docked at a Djibouti port for a friendly visit with the message of peace and friendship.”

Nuclear Issue

  • Ayatollah Amoli-Larijani, the head of Iran’s Judiciary, commentson nuclear diplomacy:
    • “We have frequently announced our support for the negotiation team, and at present, we want the officials responsible for negotiations, in accordance with policies outlined by the Supreme Leader of the Revolution and the Islamic System, to not step back from the rights of the nation and to know that in the path of perseverance and steadfastness for the rights of the nation, the support of a great nation is behind them.”
    • “In the process of negotiating about sanctions, there must be such planning and emphasis so that new sanctions are not formed under any excuse against the nation of Iran, and it must not be such that today they remove the sanctions and tomorrow again, they supposedly, due to the excuse of ballistic missiles or excuses of human rights, apply new sanctions.”
  • Fars News Agency runs a headline reading: “Arabs line-up under the leadership of the king of Saudi against a nuclear deal with Iran.”
  • Fars News Agency additionally offers a “moment by moment” analysis and report of negotiations in Vienna. The Agencyfurther quotes Marziyeh Afkham, the Spokesperson of Iran’s Foreign Ministry in a title, stating: “The environment of the negotiations are serious.”
  • Dr. Ali-Akbar Salehi, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization (AEOI), states:
    • “The transfer of Iran’s nuclear fuel to other countries, including Russia is false, and the fuel for atomic reactors, following the contract signed with Russia, will be produced inside Iran.”
  • President Hassan Rouhani states:
    • “If those negotiating with the Islamic Republic of Iran have political will to reach an agreement and don’t have excessive demands, the conditions for reaching an agreement are available.”
  • Ali Larijani, Iran’s Parliamentary Speaker, exclaims with respect to the negotiating devices of the P5+1:
    • “The negotiation bargaining that they have, is not like a strategic negotiation, but is of the grade of bargaining and groceries, and it is due to this that [the negotiations] have become lengthy.”
  • Admiral Ali Shamkhani, the Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC), notes in an interview with the Al-Mayadin TV (as reported in Kayhan):
    • “Unfortunately, the counterpart is under the influence of some domestic power equations and also regional pressures such as the Zionist regime. You see Netanyahu’s reactions to the Muscat... negotiations. Constantly under pressure of some regional countries, they [the United States] is incapable of serious decision making... Arak is not an insoluble technical enigma. Research and Development is not a complicated issue, and Iran's nuclear program depends on Research and Development... For the time being, the two issues of sanction removal and enrichment of uranium has become the main issues of the negotiations, but other issues still exist... Sanctions are unjust... with no legal base, and must certainly be removed... otherwise the negotiations will not have any result and would not satisfy the demands of our country.”
  • Major General Mohammad-Ali Aziz Jafari, the Commander of Iran’s IRGC, states:
    • “It is the United States which with abjection is seeking an agreement with Iran in order to solve its problems. They know they can't achieve their goals while pursuing enmity against Iran. They know that today, the Islamic revolution is an irritant and [an obstacle] in their path which does not allow them to reach their goals.”
    • Commenting on the removal of sanctions, Jafari said: “God willing, this goal too will be reached, but their [the United States] goal is different. This is why they are prolonging the negotiations, but should we - with God's help - reach the result, everyone will see that we did not withdraw from our position.”
  • Yehuda Yaakov, the Israeli Consul General to New England,writes in The Boston Globe: “I thought I had seen it all. Having dealt with preventing the development of Iran’s nuclear program for the better part of a decade, I thought nothing could surprise me. I realized recently just how wrong I was. As the Nov. 24 deadline on negotiations approaches, the United States and other major players on the world stage seek to strike a deal. Meanwhile, Iran’s leaders seem uninterested in peaceful solutions and continue to say as much publicly. Case in point: This item that appeared on Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s social media account recently.”

Economy

  • Islamic Republic News Agency runs a headline quoting Hojjat al-Eslam Gholam-Reza Mesbahi Moghaddam, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s Planning and Budget Committee: “The key to solving economic issues is the creation of jobs.”
  • Reuters reports: “India will soon pay a third tranche of $400 million to Iran ahead of a Nov. 24 deadline to an interim deal with six world powers that allows Tehran to recover part of its overseas frozen oil revenues, industry sources said in Wednesday. Indian oil refiners are preparing to release the payments this week, the sources said, adding Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd and Essar Oil will make the bulk of the payment.”
  • Fars News Agency reports: “Iran's foreign trade hit $57.214bln in the first seven months of the current Iranian year (March 21-October 22, 2014), Director of the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran (TPOI) Farhad Nouri said. Nouri said that Iran's non-oil exports amounted to $26.9bln during the period, while it imported over $30bln worth of products.”
  • Fars News Agency reported: “Iran on Tuesday inaugurated a passenger shipping line between its Southwestern port of Khorramshahr and Iraq's Basra port. The Khorramshahr-Basra Shipping line was opened in the presence of Khorramshahr Governor Valiollah Hayati and a number of provincial officials today.”

Human Rights

  • The AP reported: “The U.N. General Assembly human rights committee approved a resolution Tuesday expressing deep concern about rights violations in Iran, including the "alarmingly high frequency" of the use of the death penalty. Support came from 78 member countries, with 35 voting no and 69 abstaining. Several countries have objected to the targeting of a specific nation.”

Daily Picture(s)

  • Tasnim News Agency displays photos of an air show in the Persian Gulf island of Kish.