Tag Archives: Iran

Iran: Regime troops fire missiles at Islamic State positions in eastern Syria

Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar]

“Iran’s Revolutionary Guard says it has fired several missiles at ISIL positions in Syria’s Deir Az Zor province in retaliation for two deadly attacks in Tehran earlier this month that were claimed by the armed group. ‘Medium-range missiles were fired from the (western) provinces of Kermanshah and Kurdestan, and a large number of terrorists were killed and weapons destroyed,’ the Guard said in a statement published on its Sepahnews website on Sunday. … The firing of the missiles, the first in 30 years outside Iran’s own territory, came hours after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in a statement on his website, vowed Iran would ‘slap its enemies’ in honour of the victims’ families, including those killed in Syria and Iraq.” (06/18/17)

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/06/iran-fires-missiles-isil-positions-eastern-syria-170618193251349.html

The Qatar crisis

Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison

“Qatar is negotiating with both Iran and Turkey for food and water supplies in response to the Saudi-Emirati-led attempt to blockade and isolate the country. Iran’s foreign minister is in Ankara to meet with President Erdogan today. Both governments have an incentive to help Qatar out of its present jam. Iran stands to gain influence and improve its ties with Qatar while frustrating the designs of the Saudis and Emiratis, and Turkey has an interest in keeping Qatar’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood in place, and both have their own reasons to be opposed to Saudi-led power plays in any case. The Saudi-led bloc may have assumed that it could present Qatar with a fait accompli and force it to make concessions without much difficulty, but if these moves are any indication Qatar’s government is not going to capitulate so easily. Once again, the Saudis and their allies have assumed they could rack up an easy victory and haven’t considered how things could go wrong. ” (06/07/17)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/the-qatar-crisis/

There is an opportunity for improved relations with Iran

Source: The American Conservative
by Daniel Larison

“Unfortunately, one of the few consistent positions Trump has held as both candidate and president is his hostility to Iran, and it is one that most politicians in Washington share. This would be regrettable at any time, but it is especially so when we can see that most Iranians support international engagement and gradual reform. Hard-liners in the U.S. desperately wanted Raisi to prevail so that they could claim that he represents the ‘true’ face of Iran, but as we saw last week he doesn’t represent most Iranians. There is an opportunity here for the U.S. to reduce tensions with Iran if our leaders were wise enough to take it, and missing this opportunity could have substantial costs for both countries.” (05/25/17)

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/there-is-an-opportunity-for-improved-relations-with-iran/

Iran: Reformists sweep Tehran municipal council election

Source: ABC News

“Candidates backing reform of Iran’s clerically overseen government swept municipal elections in Tehran, taking all 21 local council seats in the country’s capital while moderate President Hassan Rouhani won a second term in office, authorities said on Monday. Their win in Friday’s election marks the first time reformists have gained total control of Tehran’s municipal council since such votes began in the Islamic Republic in 1999. Iranian media also reported similar big gains for reformists in other major cities. While their powers are limited to local affairs, the councils represent direct control of governance by Iran’s 80 million people. Having reformists take control signals a groundswell of support for slowly changing the way government works in Iran, and reflects growing discontent with the country’s hard-liners.” (05/22/17)

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/reformists-sweep-tehran-municipal-vote-rouhani-wins-iran-47553076

France’s ATR delivers first planes to Iran as trade grows

Source: Seattle Times

“European plane maker ATR is delivering small passenger jets to Iran, the latest big-budget deal to emerge in the wake of Iran’s 2015 nuclear accord with world powers that ended years of sanctions. The first four ATR 72-600s were handed over to Iran Air in a ceremony Tuesday in Toulouse in southern France, where ATR is based. Iran Air finalized a deal last month with ATR for 20 twin-propeller aircraft, with an option to buy 20 more.” (05/16/17)

http://www.seattletimes.com/business/frances-atr-delivers-first-planes-to-iran-as-trade-grows/

Iran: Conservatives unite to pose stronger threat to Rouhani

Source: Bloomberg

“Iranian presidential candidate Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf withdrew from this month’s election to support fellow conservative Ebrahim Raisi, state television reported, a decision that polls show would effectively create a two-man race with incumbent Hassan Rouhani. Qalibaf, the 55-year-old mayor of Tehran who lost to Rouhani in 2013, criticized the president’s ‘inefficient and impotent’ cabinet in a statement announcing his decision. A survey by the state-affiliated Iranian Students Polling Agency published last week showed support for Rouhani at 42 percent, Raisi on 27 percent, while Qalibaf was at 25 percent. If conservative voters unite behind Raisi, they could tip an election that just a few weeks ago, surveys suggested, was heading toward a straightforward victory for Rouhani.” (05/15/17)

https://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2017-05-15/iran-conservatives-unite-to-pose-stronger-challenge-to-rouhani

Iran: Ahmadinejad “disqualified” from presidential election

Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar]

“Iran’s former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been disqualified from running in next month’s presidential election, according to state media. The decision on Thursday was taken by the Guardian Council, a clerical body charged with vetting candidates for the May 19 election. In a surprise move, Ahmadinejad registered as a candidate last week, despite previously saying he would not stand. Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei had previously urged him not to run.” (04/20/17)

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/04/mahmoud-ahmadinejad-disqualified-iran-elections-170420190716061.html

Rubio “gravely worried” that we’ll forget he exists if he doesn’t occasionally break into hawkish screeching

Source: Fox News

“Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told Fox News he’s ‘gravely concerned’ about the Iran’s [sic] role in helping Syria develop its chemical welfare program that ended up killing dozens of people weeks ago. Rubio, a Republican, said he was troubled by reports that both Iran and Russia were complicit in Bashar Assad’s chemical weapons program. While the Trump administration accused Moscow of covering up the Syrian regime’s chemical weapons attack, the U.S government has not mentioned Iran’s possible role. ‘Congress and the White House should work together to hold the Assad regime accountable for its war crimes and impose harsh sanctions against its enablers,’ Rubio told Fox News. [Mostly unsubstantiated claims and jingoistic propaganda follow]” (04/20/17)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/04/20/syrias-chemical-program-rubio-gravely-concerned-about-iran-russia-complicity.html

Iranian regime sticks to nuclear deal but Tillerson looks for excuses to keep sanctions

Source: National Public Radio [US state media]

“As President Trump wages a rhetorical battle with North Korea over its nuclear program, his secretary of state says the nuclear deal with Iran will now be placed under review. In a letter to Congress, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Iran is meeting the terms of the 2015 deal worked out with the Obama administration and five other countries. But Tillerson added that the current administration would evaluate whether the lifting of sanctions that had been placed on Iran ‘is vital to the national security interests of the United States.'”

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/04/19/524701919/iran-sticks-to-nuclear-deal-but-u-s-says-it-will-review-sanctions

Iran: Ahmadinejad registers for presidential polls, defying Khamenei

Source: The Hindu [India]

“Iran’s former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday stunned the country by unexpectedly filing to run in the May presidential election, contradicting a recommendation from the supreme leader to stay out of the race. Mr. Ahmadinejad’s decision could upend an election many believed would be won by moderate President Hassan Rouhani, who negotiated the nuclear deal with world powers. … Mr. Ahmadinejad’s firebrand style could prove appealing for hard-liners seeking a tough-talking candidate who can stand up to U.S. President Donald Trump. His candidacy also could expose the fissures inside Iranian politics that linger since his contested 2009 reelection, which brought massive unrest.” (04/12/17)

http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/ahmadinejad-registers-for-iran-presidential-polls-defying-ayatollah-khamenei/article17951393.ece