Iran News Round Up
The Iran News Round Up ran from February 2009-September 2018. Visit the Iran File for the latest analysis.
A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by the AEI Critical Threats Project's Iran research team. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.
(E) = Article in English
Excerpts of these translations may only be used with the expressed consent of the authors.
- President Hassan Rouhani addressed the 27th Islamic Unity Conference to discuss the nuclear program and the West:
- “Great and Western powers, who are seeking their interests in the region and want to grab the resources of Muslims, especially in the oil and gas energy sectors, are constantly seeking their two ominous goals of deepening divisions and ‘Islamophobia’ among global public opinion.”
- “The Islamic Republic of Iran’s government and the administration of moderation and hope has planned as well as taken steps to confront these two goals within the past five months in addition to attempting to resolve domestic issues.”
- “The enemies of Islam sought to begin a new war in the region and had created some groundwork.”
- “The first step of the administration was preventing a new war in the region. This administration used foreign diplomacy and all available tools to be in constant contact with countries that shared this goal of opposing bloodshed, war, strife and a new occupation in the region. If it were not for the cooperation of Syria and Russia, this goal would be unachievable.”
- “The second step that the Islamic Republic of Iran administration took to confront the goal of Dominant Seekers [West] was confronting Islamophobia.”
- “The Islamic Republic of Iran has nothing to hide in the field of nuclear technology. Iran’s nuclear technology is completely peaceful and will only be used for peaceful purposes.”
- “One of the important goals of the Islamic Republic of Iran has been confronting the plan of ‘Iranophobia’ in previous years, and today it has become clear for the world that the Islamic Republic of Iran has not and does not seek nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction. Per the fatwa of the Supreme Leader, this act has been forbidden…this nation has been victim of weapons of mass destruction in previous years.”
- “Week of Unity is so all can confront these two goals of the enemy, meaning creating division among Muslims and Islamophobia across the globe.”
- Tehran Interim Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Kazem Sedighi responded to US criticism of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s visit to former Lebanese Hezbollah commander Imad Mughniyeh’s grave, emphasized unity among Muslims and discussed the Geneva accord:
- “There are many hadiths in prominent Sunni books that are not compatible with the Wahabbi environment whatsoever. Their path is neither the path of Salafi, nor the path of the previous ulama. Blaspheming Muslims, creating division and also killing and assassinations are against narratives that are present in the books of our Sunni brothers.”
- “Today, the World of Arrogance [West] has used all weapons and tactics to destroy God’s religion with all the malice it has towards the World of Islam.”
- “We have a common enemy. Arrogance does not want neither Sunni nor Shi’a….They are hostile towards Islam and seek to destroy all of you. Did you see what they did in Afghanistan, Sudan, Pakistan, Egypt and other countries? How many times must we see [the same] experience? Has the time not come to learn, unite and deal the final blows to the bullying America and its cancerous tumor [Israel]?”
- “The Supreme Leader is concerned about the world of Islam and the strengthening of resistances that have formed in the World of Islam today. If we advance these under a flag encompassing the expansive divine thought and unity and the World of Islam takes inspiration from one source and connects in its massive capacity, then it will lead to an Islamic global government and emergence of humanity’s savior.”
- “We announce again that this [Geneva] accord has not stemmed from a position of abjection, poverty, famine and sanctions. Our nation is faithful, war tested and has suffered. These are the inheritors of Balal Habashi and Malek Ashtar, have grown in difficulties, have never feared them and have transformed all threats to opportunity and it shall be so in this stage as well.”
- “This is also a new tactic to protect the world of Islam’s interests from a position of strength and greatness.”
- “The necessary attentions must take place to preserve the red lines of observing wisdom, expediency, greatness and a red line that stems from the highest position in the Islamic World, which we hope it shall be so.”
- “I announce that the resistance of Lebanon and Hezbollah is not only a pride for the world of Islam and us, rather it is the pride of humanity in breaking the horns of Arrogance and the bullies of humanity.”
- Representative of the Supreme Leader to Western Azerbaijan Province and the province’s new Friday Prayer Leader Hojjat al-Eslam Mehdi Ghoreishi urged Islamic unity and stated, “Today, the followers of various religions and sects especially Shi’as and Sunni have the necessary awareness towards the enemies in Islamic Iran and Western Azerbaijan, the unity and sympathy in this province is a model.”
- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin, extended greetings from the Supreme Leader, and praised him for his role in the Geneva negotiations: “Our organization in Geneva is indebted to Russia’s efforts and we thank you. We will persistently work, cooperate, and coordinate with you in order to reach a final solution.”
- Putin has also accepted President Rouhani’s invitation to visit Iran.
- The trip to Moscow marked the end of Zarif’s second regional journey, and he departed Russia to go to Iran after meeting with Putin, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and Russian elites.
- An Iranian investigatory delegation arrived in Lebanon to examine the details of the suicide bombing on the Iranian embassy in Beirut and the death of Abdullah Azzam Brigade’s Leader Majid al-Majid. The two countries agreed on judicial cooperation during the ongoing investigation.
- National Security and Foreign Policy Parliamentary Commission Member Mohammad Hassan Asfari served as the commission’s representative and said that “Intelligence, research, and the resultant progress were transferred to Foreign Minister [Zarif] during his trip to Lebanon.” He added, “If secret notes on the arrest of Majid al-Majid and his deputy, as well as intelligence about the terrorist group, is disclosed, then many hidden issues will become clear.”
- Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian left for Istanbul to meet with Turkish officials, including Deputy Foreign Minister Fereydoon Sinsirli Uglu, about the Syrian crisis.
- A Bahraini source reported that Abdollahian met with a senior adviser in the Bahraini foreign ministry, Ghanem Abu al-Aynein, before his departure for Turkey, but provided no additional details.
- Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani also reacted to criticism of Foreign Minister Zarif’s visit to former Lebanese Hezbollah commander Mughniyeh’s grave, saying: “The Americans showed incorrect behavior and considered [Zarif’s visit] embarrassing, yet they paid their respects at the graves of the criminals of the Sabra and Shatila massacre.”
- “Iran is ready to sacrifice itself for Lebanese Hezbollah. If you violate Hezbollah, we are standing behind it because Hezbollah is in glorious opposition to the Occupying Regime [Israel].”
- National Security and Foreign Policy Parliamentary Commission Chairman MP Alaeddin Boroujerdi called US criticism of Foreign Minister Zarif’s visit to former Lebanese Hezbollah Commander Imad Mughniyeh’s grave “a natural response.” Regarding the Geneva 2 conference on Syria, he stated, “Without a doubt, the presence of the Islamic Republic of Iran has an important role in the success of the Geneva conference and the lack of Iran’s presence will cause the conference to be unsuccessful.”
Military and Security
- Head of the Basij Organization Brig. Gen. Mohammad Reza Naghdi met with the family of Sunni martyr Khalid Heidari, whom he praised as, “the first pride of every Iranian.” Naghdi then spoke against Arrogance [the West], saying, “Just like Saddam, who failed, all arrogant people will be destroyed in the face of Resistance.”
- Naghdi also spoke at another martyr’s commemoration, blaming the West for violence between sects of Islam:
- “Exploding hundreds of bombs amidst Shi’a pilgrims or launching hundreds of messages to insult Shi’a does not cause distrust of our Sunni brothers because the community and people know that this sectarianism takes place due to Arrogance.”
- The commander said the West does this in order to “create differences between sects and religions in order to change wars and jihads against Arrogance, America, and the Zionist regime into internal wars between Muslims.”
- “Today, the nations have become vigilant and know that the centers protecting terrorists in Iraq and Syria are America, England, and France. The media centers that insult Sunnis are in America and England, too, since these words are not from Shi’a.”
- Armed Forces General Staff Deputy of Basij Affairs and Cultural Defense Brig. Gen. Massoud Jazayeri spoke of the importance of Muslim unity, “which must be returned to and developed.”
- “When we look at the Islamic community and Prophet [Mohammad], we see a large gap between what our Prophet did and what we are doing today…It is our responsibility to shrink this gap, even though the enemy does not want this to occur.”
- “The Islamic Revolution was a wake up call during the present age. The enemy saw that if that which the Prophet and Islamic Iran said was implemented, there would be no space for their devilry.”
- “Arrogance [the West] used its experiences to turn Muslims against one another. You see the situation in the region in which Muslims take the lives of one another. Likewise, Saudi Arabia, as a Muslim country, is responsible for many of the regional clashes.”
- Minister of Defense Brig. Gen. Hossein Dehghan addressed a crowd in Khuzestan province and spoke of the unique role of the Artesh, IRGC, and Law Enforcement Forces in creating border security in the province: “By giving security and stability, the armed forces have provided the space for multilateral development in this province.”
- Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Ali Akbar Salehi met with Expediency Discernment Council Chairman Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani to update him on the nuclear program and negotiations. Rafsanjani said he was content with recent developments and said, “Based on international law, no country can prevent the nation’s nuclear progress.”
- Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Spokesman Behrouz Kemalvandi announced, “Inspectors from the [International Atomic Energy] Agency will be inspecting the Gachin mine in Bandar Abbas on [January 29], per the framework of the [November 11] agreement between Iran and the IAEA.” Kemalvandi also said that there would be a conference on January 24 to clarify the agency’s tasks in supervising the implementation of the Geneva agreement.
- Deputy Foreign Minister for European and American Affairs Majid Takht Ravanchi responded to a question about the implications of new sanctions against Iran by the US Congress: “If this occurs, all of the stages of negotiations and agreements will be broken. Of course, Obama has said that he will veto all new Congressional sanctions. If these sanctions occur, it will be the end of the negotiations process because the Geneva agreement clearly says that there must be no new resolutions against Iran.”
- Ravanchi said that the Iranian parliament would not create such problems, but that “If there are new resolutions by the West, they have decided to, and the government will be forced to enrich uranium to 60%. We hope that the Geneva agreement is implemented transparently and without problem-creation over the next six months.”
- Ravanchi added that the US decision to keep Iran from participating in the Geneva II conference “will in no way” affect the nuclear negotiations.
- Head of the Foreign Investment Attraction Parliamentary faction and Energy Parliamentary Commission member MP Jalil Jafari stated, “The implementation of the Geneva accord will not only lead to an increase in the amount of foreign investments in the country, it will also open the path to executing negotiations and entrance of multinational oil companies to Iran. Positive indicators will be created in the oil and gas industry, in addition that Iran will be able to compensate its lag in expanding joint oil and gas fields. After the first agreement in Geneva in recent months, multinational oil companies began negotiations with Iran and in case of the improvement of circumstances, their presence will become more serious.”
- Bushehr Province Customs Supervisor Ahmad Pourheydari announced negotiations between Iran Customs Managing Director and the Oil Minister to transform the Pars energy areas to a special economic zone and stated, “Following these negotiations, this proposal will be implemented.”
- Agricultural Jihad Minister Mahmoud Hojjati announced, “Iran’s agriculture has the groundwork that can expand with the presence of foreign investors and German agricultural industry technological advancements. [The Fifth Global Forum for Food and Agriculture in Germany] can be an appropriate avenue to be exposed to new technology, which in this path the identification and introduction of capable companies to private sector applicants can accompany international activities for the agricultural sector.”
Photo of the Day
- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attends Tehran Friday Prayer.