Iran News Round Up

A selection of the latest news stories and articles published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by AEI Critical Threats Analysts.

 

Key takeaway: Supreme National Security Council Secretary Ali Shamkhani confirmed the renewal of Russia’s use of Iranian airspace to launch airstrikes into Syria.

Fars News Agency noted that “Western media” outlets reported recently that Russian bombers used Iranian airspace and Hamedan Province’s Shahid Nojeh Air Base en route to missions in Syria. Shamkhani stated that Russian use of Iranian airspace “is continuing,” but added that Russian bombers have not carried out “any refueling operations” in Iran recently. Russian warplanes have used Shahid Nojeh Air Base repeatedly, including in August 2016. Russian and Iranian officials have stated since then that Russian warplanes could use the base again as necessary. Increased Russian presence in Iran would benefit Iran’s weak deterrence capabilities, but Iranian officials could face domestic political backlash due to the Islamic Republic’s historic sensitivity to foreign military presence on its soil. 

 

Regional Developments and Diplomacy
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February 13, 2017

Shamkhani: Russian bombers are using Iranian airspace.

Fars News Agency noted that “Western media” outlets reported recently that Russian bombers used Iranian airspace and Hamedan Province’s Shahid Nojeh Air Base en route to missions in Syria. Supreme National Security Council Secretary Ali Shamkhani responded to these reports and stated that Russia’s “use of Iran’s airspace is continuing because we have fully strategic cooperation with Russia…. Therefore, we will have any kind of cooperation with Russia regarding Syria that is necessary. It is possible [Russian] aircraft will cross through Iranian airspace; the necessary licenses in this regard are issued.” Shamkhani said that the Russian bombers did not carry out “any refueling operations” in Iran, however. (Fars News Agency) (E) (Tasnim News Agency) 

February 13, 2017

Larijani: There is no military solution to Syria and Yemen.

Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani stated that “one of the reasons for all the insecurity in the region is that some countries consider military attacks the solution to the problems in [Syria and Yemen]. We believe that a political solution - via the establishment of democracy and the formation of a government of national unity - is the best way to end these conflicts,” during a meeting with Swedish Prime Minister Stephen Löfven. (ISNA) 

Citations & Links

1. Fars News Agency: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13951123000774

2. Tasnim News Agency: https://www.tasnimnews.com/fa/news/1395/11/23/1325161/%D9%BE%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D8%AC%D9%86%DA%AF%D9%86%D8%AF%D9%87-%D9%87%D8%A7%DB%8C-%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%B3-%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D8%A2%D8%B3%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A7%DB%8C%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A7%D8%AF%D8%A7%D9%85%D9%87-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B1%D8%AF-%D9%85%D8%AC%D9%88%D8%B2-%D8%A8%D8%A7-%D9%87%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%87%D9%86%DA%AF%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%AF%D9%87-%D9%85%DB%8C-%D8%B4%D9%88%D8%AF

Citations & Links

1. ISNA: http://www.isna.ir/news/95112316263/%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%87-%D8%AD%D9%84-%D8%A8%D8%AD%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%B3%D9%88%D8%B1%DB%8C%D9%87-%D9%88-%DB%8C%D9%85%D9%86-%D9%86%D8%B8%D8%A7%D9%85%DB%8C-%D9%86%DB%8C%D8%B3%D8%AA

Domestic Politics
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February 13, 2017

Vice president: Reformists must improve their relations with the Supreme Leader.

Vice President for Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Hojjat ol Eslam Majid Ansari called for an improvement in relations between reformists and the Supreme Leader. Ansari also said that reformist former president Mohammad Khatami “and other reformist leaders have stressed that it is necessary to improve relations with the Supreme Leader.” Ansari stated, “In legal terms, the Supreme Leader is the highest moral and political official…  It would be an honor to have greater contact and communication.” (Mehr News Agency)

February 13, 2017

Ahmadinejad: I don’t support any particular candidate in the presidential elections.

Former hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that he does “not support any individual, faction, party, or group” in the May 2017 presidential elections in a statement published on his website. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei barred Ahmadinejad from seeking a third term in September 2016. (Aftab News)

Citations & Links

1. Mehr News Agency: http://www.mehrnews.com/news/3904883/%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%B2%D8%A7%DB%8C%D8%B4-%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%A8%D8%B7-%D8%A7%D8%B5%D9%84%D8%A7%D8%AD-%D8%B7%D9%84%D8%A8%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A8%D8%A7-%D8%B1%D9%87%D8%A8%D8%B1%DB%8C-%D9%86%D8%B8%D8%A7%D9%85-%DB%8C%DA%A9-%D8%B6%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%B1%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D8%B3%D8%AA

Citations & Links

1. Aftab News: http://aftabnews.ir/fa/news/426373/%D8%A7%D8%AD%D9%85%D8%AF%DB%8C%E2%80%8C%D9%86%DA%98%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8%B9%D8%B6%D9%88-%D9%87%DB%8C%DA%86-%D8%AC%D9%86%D8%A7%D8%AD-%D9%88-%D8%AD%D8%B2%D8%A8%DB%8C-%D9%86%DB%8C%D8%B3%D8%AA%D9%85-%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D9%87%DB%8C%DA%86-%D9%86%D8%A7%D9%85%D8%B2%D8%AF%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%B1-%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%AA%D8%AE%D8%A7%D8%A8%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%AD%D9%85%D8%A7%DB%8C%D8%AA-%D9%86%D9%85%DB%8C-%DA%A9%D9%86%D9%85

Economy
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February 13, 2017

Vice President: The government has performed well in the manufacturing sector.

First Vice President Eshagh Jahangiri praised the “noticeable steps” the Rouhani administration has taken in the “manufacturing, agricultural, oil, and petrochemical industries” as evidence of the country’s “serious effort” to implement the Resistance Economy. The Resistance Economy is Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s doctrine designed to make the Iranian economy resistant to all external shocks, including sanctions and global financial crises. Jahangiri is the head of the Resistance Economy Command Headquarters. (Mehr News Agency)

Citations & Links

1. Mehr News Agency: http://www.mehrnews.com/news/3906102/%D8%AF%D9%88%D9%84%D8%AA-%D8%B9%D9%85%D9%84%DA%A9%D8%B1%D8%AF-%D8%AE%D9%88%D8%A8%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%B1-%D8%B1%D9%88%D9%86%D9%82-%D8%A8%D8%AE%D8%B4-%D8%AA%D9%88%D9%84%DB%8C%D8%AF-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B4%D8%AA%D9%87-%D8%A7%D8%B3%D8%AA

Military and Security
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February 13, 2017

Artesh Navy fleet reportedly repels pirate attack in Bab el Mandeb Strait.

The Artesh Navy 44th Fleet repelled 11 pirate boats’ attempted hijacking of an Iranian cargo ship in the Bab el Mandeb Strait. The 44th Fleet, which consists of the frigate Alvand and the support vessel Bushehr, is scheduled to return to Iran within approximately the next month. 

  • Artesh Navy Commander RADM Habibollah Sayyari stated that the Artesh Navy’s “most important problem” is “restoring security to the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea, and the Bab el Mandeb Strait.” Sayyari also stated that the Artesh Navy has “completed development” of a new base and the Velayat-e Jask and Nabovvat naval zones located in Konarak, on the Makran coast on the Gulf of Oman. Sayyari stated that the Artesh Navy deployed 20,000 “employees” to the Makran coast in order to “lay the foundation” for the Navy’s involvement in the “development” of that area. (Fars News Agency) (E) (Fars News Agency) (E) (Tasnim News Agency)

Citations & Links

1. Fars News Agency: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13951125001017

2. Fars News Agency: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13951125000816

3. Tasnim News Agency: https://www.tasnimnews.com/fa/news/1395/11/24/1326421/%D8%A7%D8%B3%D8%AA%D9%82%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%B1-20-%D9%87%D8%B2%D8%A7%D8%B1-%D9%86%D9%81%D8%B1-%D8%A7%D8%B2-%DA%A9%D8%A7%D8%B1%DA%A9%D9%86%D8%A7%D9%86-%D9%86%DB%8C%D8%B1%D9%88%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%B1%DB%8C%D8%A7%DB%8C%DB%8C-%D8%A7%D8%B1%D8%AA%D8%B4-%D8%AF%D8%B1-%D8%B3%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AD%D9%84-%D9%85%DA%A9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86

TIMELINE
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