Subscribe to FDD

Iran Press Review: 22 Oct.

Politics

  • President Hassan Rouhani submitted his new nomination for Minister of Science, Research, and Technology (Higher Education) to Ali Larijani, the Speaker of Parliament [Majlis]. President Rouhani choose Dr. Mahmoud Nili Ahmadabadi, a current Tehran University professor as the replacement for the head the aforementioned ministry.
  • Prominent officials in the Islamic Republic continue to mourn the death of the Head of the Assembly of Experts, Ayatollah Mahdavi-Kani, in their speeches and statements:
    • Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif likened his passing to “[A] great and tragic loss for all those devotees of the country, system, and Islamic Revolution.”
    • Ali Larijani, Iran’s Parliamentary Speaker stated that “He painfully paid attention to the issues of Islam and Muslims and with all his soul he strove in the path of [the] Revolution…”
  • The Head of Iran’s Judiciary, Ayatollah Sadegh Amoli-Larijani comments on:
    • ‘Seditionists’ [Fitnehgaran, or the term applied to the Green Movement and its supporters]: “The seditionists who want to emerge must know that we will not allow them to arise and create sedition.”
  • Comments by Hossein Shariatmadari, the editor of the conservative Kayhan newspaper as reported by Mashregh News:
    • “The Supreme Leader has stated that sedition is our redline. If at present it is located in any part of the government, [and] seditiousness has come forth, we must be aware and protest [it].”

Foreign Policy

  • The current Vice-Chairman of Iran’s Assembly of Experts, Ayatollah Hashemi Shahroudi is slated to meet with Iraqi Minister of Oil, Adel Abdolhamadi today.
  • Hossein Sheikh al-Eslami, an advisor for international affairs to the Parliamentary Speaker notes: “The Iran-Georgia friendship group in the Islamic Consultative Assembly will travel to Georgia for 4 days next week.”
  • Ayatollah Ali-Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a former president and current Chairman of the Expediency and Discernment Council met with Iraqi Prime Minister Heydar al-Khoei today and spoke  on relations with Iraq and Islamic unity:
    • “The resources of Muslim countries must not be wasted on baseless divisions.”
    • Commenting on Iran’s views on the Iraqi people during the Iran-Iraq War: “After the victory of Khurramshahr (when Iran liberated that city from Iraqi forces) the late Imam (Khomeini) told us to know the people of Iraq as your brothers, and did not permit us to enter Iraq’s cities. After hearing the logic of military officials, he said: ‘Enter areas that are not populated, and in retaliating, announce it 48 hours before so people have the opportunity to leave the city and to save themselves.” 
    • On relations with Iraq: “Even the eight year war of the Ba’ath Army against Iran could not break the roots of the interests of the peoples of the two countries, and they saw that after the demise of the Saddam-ists, how the interests sprouted from the ruins of war.”

Military and Security

  • Brigadier General Gholam-Reza Jalali, the Head of Iran’s Passive Defense Organization notes:
    • “Presently in the cyber field, nearly 21 countries have cyber armies where most of their efforts are on the elements of attack and offense, and the most important of those are America and the Zionist regime, which in a specialized form have 17 cyber command units which have been created to weaken and attack other countries in the fields of banking, electricity, and nuclear.”
    • “We have had a worthy amount of sustainability in combating cyber-attacks in the past year, and while there are still some deficiencies in some fields, in critical fields we have become a barrier against enemy cyber-attacks.”
  • Ahmad Vahidi, Iran’s former Minister of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics comments on the regional security situation and support to Lebanon:
    • On the alleged military support of other nations to the army of Lebanon: “These countries occasionally that they give arms to army of Lebanon, and that they strengthen it, but until now they have not done such a thing, and they are satisfied with the army of Lebanon being weak.”
    • “Iran’s military assistance to Lebanon is in the framework of the current needs of problems of the army of Lebanon.”
  • Tasnim News Agency reports of new military equipment for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Ground Forces on display in an exhibition today. The new armaments include: a “‘hami’ machine gun, a heat-sensing camera and laser target designator, the NA40 automatic grenade launcher, and a 40 millimeter ‘rolor’ grenade launcher.” 
  • The Washington Post reports: “We're accustomed to reports of U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan. So too the almost routine exchanges of fire between Indian and Pakistani soldiers stationed across one of the world's militarized borders, where skirmishes have led to more than a dozen deaths this past month. But hostilities have flared this week along a more forgotten frontier: Pakistan's long desert border with Iran.”

Nuclear Issue

  • During his trip to Zanjan province, President Rouhani comments on the issue of sanctions and “the rights of the people” exclaiming:
    • “At present, with all our strength we are going after the removal of the oppressive wall of sanctions forever.”
  • In an article in Tasnim News Agency, Mehdi Mohammadi relates that:
    • “The most important point the Iranian team must keep in mind is that the West’s radical positions is a negotiating tactic, not a political strategy, and therefore there is no reason for excessive haste.”
  • Marziyeh Afkham, the Spokesperson for Iran’s Foreign Ministry states:
    • “The issue of the negotiations is the nuclear sanctions and the positions of the nuclear team and the officials of the Islamic Republic about repealing sanctions and the conditions for the forming of the comprehensive agreement has been quickly and clearly accounted for in the negotiations.”
    • “This agreement had two main goals, clarifying and consolidating the issue of Iran’s peaceful nuclear activities for the parties to remove the worries over Iran’s peaceful nuclear program. And the other was repealing sanctions.”
    • “The issues which have been mentioned by way of several outlets are, at present being discussed, and please allow for the technical groups to continue their talks.”
  • In additional comments by Hossein Shariatmadari of Kayhanas reported by Mashregh News, the editor of the influential Tehran paper had the following to say about negotiations with the United States:
    • “We have said many times that America is not trustworthy. And the sirs have gone and seen that America is not trustworthy. In truth, this is one of the most important achievements of the negotiations. Some had suggested in such a manner that the key to solving the adventure was this.”

Economy

  • Fars News Agency reports statements by Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei on Iranian oil: “Instead of reliance on the oil revenues, Iran should be managed through reliance on its internal forces and the resources on the ground, meaning the youth's intelligence and talent, and production of science and knowledge and if so, no world power can turn the country's economy into a plaything.”
  • Tasnim News Agency reports: “The volume of Iran’s steel production have shown a 6 percent increase over the first three quarters of 2014 compared to the same period last year, despite sanctions imposed on the country’s steel industry. The volume of the Islamic Republic’s steel production have reached 12.067 million tons in the first 9 months of this year, showing a 6 percent increase compared with the same period in 2013, in which the amount stood at 11.319 million tons, according to the latest figures released by the World Steel Association.”
  • Fars News Agency reports: “A team of Chinese investors have voiced their willingness to invest in Iran's steel industry, a senior trade official said Wednesday. "We will negotiate with the Chinese next week about Miyaneh steel project (one of the seven steel projects to go under negotiation for foreign investment) to pave the way for the start of its operation next year," Head of the Iranian Mines and Mining Industries Development and Renovation Organization (IMIDRO) Mehdi Karbasiyan said today.”

Human Rights

  • Reuters reports: “Human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh said on Wednesday she would protest outside the Iranian Bar Association offices in Tehran until it reversed a decision to ban her from practicing law for three years. Sotoudeh was sentenced to six years in jail in 2010 and banned from practice after being convicted of spreading propaganda and conspiring to harm state security. Her case came to international attention in 2012 when she embarked on a 50-day hunger strike against a travel ban on her daughter.”

Daily Picture(s)

  • Fars News Agency documents an exhibition of the IRGC Ground Forces’ equipment.
  • Fars News Agency captures photos from President Rouhani’s visit to Zanjan today.