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Iran Press Review: 27 Feb.

Politics

  • Lotfollah Farzandeh, the Spokesperson for a political group named the Society of the Devotees of the Islamic Revolution was quoted in a headline by Resalat, saying:
    • “The concentration of conservatives should be on discourse rather than on personalities.”

Foreign Policy

  • Fars News Agency partly reports in headline that Italy’s Foreign Minister is slated to visit Iran and will appear in Tehran later this evening.
    • The trip will take place due to an offer Mohammad-Javad Zarif, Iran’s Foreign Minister, had previously extended.
  • Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, weighs-in on the future of Yemen:
    • “The people and leaders of Yemen will not allow a united Yemen to be turned into another Northern and Southern [Yemen].”
    • “The Islamic Republic of Iran…supports the national unity of Yemen.”
  • Gallup reports: “As the United States and several other nations continue to negotiate what would be a landmark agreement to limit Iran's production of nuclear weapons, more than eight in 10 Americans view Iran unfavorably (84%).
    • Only 11% have a favorable view of the country. Despite this potential thaw in Iranian-U.S. relations, Americans' views on its long-time foe have remained unchanged for 26 years.”
  • Fars News Agency reports: “Chairman of the Iranian Parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Commission Alaeddin Boroujerdi called on Tehran officials to take reciprocal measures against the western sanctions, and underlined that Europe will suffer a lot if Iran imposes energy sanctions on the European countries. "The recent statements of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei showed that Iran has the capacities for imposing gas sanctions against the European countries," Boroujerdi told reporters on Friday.”
  • As a private citizen, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad traveled to Istanbul, Turkey yesterday, where he went on to Bursa for a memorial ceremony for Najm al-Din Erbakan. Ahmadinejad traveled with a delegation that reportedly included two clerics, Hojjat al-Eslam Bahrami and Omidi. Iran’s Foreign Ministry claims not to have known about the trip, and disavowed any coordination.

Military & Security

  • Defa Press does a roundup of the last day (day 3) of the Great Prophet 9 military drill.
  • Hossein Dehqan, Iran’s Minister of Defense, comments on Iran’s retaliatory capabilities:
    • “Today, because of the strength of Islamic Iran, the wise-ones in Western politics do pay any attention to the options on America’s table, and if they want to be bold and due to craziness affront Iran and have military action on Iran, people will give them a firm response.”
  • Two Iranian naval vessels, one warship (the Naqdi) and one support-vessel (the Bandar-Abbas) docked in a port in Jakarta, Indonesia today.
  • Hojjat al-Eslam Ali Shirazi, Supreme Leader Khamenei's Representative to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force, proclaims:
    • “The Islamic Republic declared: ‘We shall avenge Martyr Allah-Dadi,’ and after twenty days, two Israeli ships were hit, 9 Israeli vehicles exploded and 17 Israeli forces were killed. I said: Don't think this is the revenge for Allah-Dadi and the six martyrs. This is just the beginning of our path. We shall not let sleep come to the eyes of the Zionist regime... We shall not rest until the banner of Islam is raised over the White House.”
  • During Friday Prayers in Tehran, Hojjat al-Eslam Kazem Sedighi, Tehran’s interim Friday Prayer Leader, comments on the recent Great Prophet 9 drills and states:
    • “The Guard Corps alongside the Armed Forces have brought about great victories in geographical boundaries, and showed that if Jihadi management does not exist we cannot become victorious, and wherever threats come about for the Revolution and martyrs, the Guardians take their lives into their hands against them and prepare [themselves.”
    • “The exercise of the Guards has a message for our enemies, that they should not dream useless dreams, because these useless dreams will never be realized, and these exercises has a message of peace and security to people and society.”
    • “The other message of the exercise of the Guards to other countries, specifically [our] neighbors is that they, for their own security have no need for obstinate and foreign forces.” 

Nuclear Issue

  • Hojjat al-Eslam Seyyed Mahmoud Nabavian, a Parliamentarian from Tehran, comments on Iranian nuclear diplomacy:
    • “A good agreement which is expected by the Supreme Leader, means providing for the interests of the nation and the system [nezam], meaning one that does not allow for the dulling of Iran’s progress, and the complete repealing of sanctions at once.”
    • “The nuclear agreement in Geneva is a national discussion, and it must be looked at through the perspective of the national interest and the nation of Iran.” 
  • Ali-Akbar Salehi, the Director of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization (AEOI), states:
    • “We got good results in the Geneva negotiations and took broad steps, although issues still exist which must be discussed.”
    • “Nuclear negotiations have technical, legal, and political dimensions [and] the technical issues will prepare the way for the legal and political.”
    • Responding to questions regarding his presence in the next round of nuclear negotiations: “God-willing [Inshallah].”
  • Hojjat al-Eslam Kazem Sedighi, Tehran’s interim Friday Prayer Leader, proclaims:
    • “Neither force, nor humiliation or continuation of the sanctions. We shall accept none... The enemies have a habit of haggling... Through haggling they want to prevent our scientific growth, which is not acceptable... The negotiations must take place in a single phase, and in a single phase, all the sanctions must be annulled. Based on reason and the international law, they do not have the right to intervene in our internal affairs, or decide our domestic needs for [nuclear] fuel... The Arak heavy water issue, lack of closure of Fordo, and securing our needs for enrichment must all be based on the opinion of our experts, and enrichment is the only way forward... These are the general issues of our nation. The nuclear issue is not just a national issue, but also a matter of our belief system, and our nation shall not accept anything less from us.”
  • Tasnim News Agency reports that nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 are slated to resume on March 5, this time in the city of Montreux, Switzerland.   

Economy & Trade

  • Commenting on oil dependency, elsewhere in his Friday Prayer sermon, Hojjat al-Eslam Sedighi said:
    • “[An] economy reliant on oil does not mesh with the independence of the country.”
  • Fars News Agency reports: “Secretary of the headquarters for the development of Iran-Iraq economic relations Rostam Qassemi announced that Tehran and Baghdad are set to increase the volume of their trade exchanges. "Construction of gas pipeline and sale of Iran's oil derivatives to Iraq's Kurdistan region are on our agenda of talks," Qassemi told reporters on Thursday.”
  • Reuters reports: “Beijing Reuters China’s crude imports from Iran fell 17 percent in January from a year ago as the world’s second largest crude importer eased off a late-2014 buying spree, although the shipments still came in higher than forecast, customs data showed on Friday. The imports last month from Iran were 1.99 million tons, or 469,000 barrels per day (bpd), also down 22 percent from December, the data showed.”

Media

  • Fars News Agency runs a headline quoting Seyyed Hashem Mirlohi, who provided commentary on the film “American Sniper” and on Hollywood in general. Mirlohi is introduced as having lived in America for 21 years. Accordingly, Fars ran the following quote from Mirlohi for the piece: “If ‘American Sniper’ was about Jews, they would have created another Holocaust out of it.”

Daily Picture(s)

  • Former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is pictured in various photos during his recent trip to Turkey.
  • Islamic Republic News Agency highlights a photo of Hojjat al-Eslam Sedighi giving a sermon during Friday Prayers in Tehran.
  • Fars News Agency displays photos of two Iranian vessels docking in Jakarta, Indonesia.
  • Defa Press reports photos of yesterday’s (day two) Great Prophet 9 military drill.