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 Ali Alfoneh, Ahmad Majidyar and Michael Rubin.  To subscribe to this daily newsletter, please visit this page, fill out the "New Subscribers" section, and check "Iran News Round Up" listed under "Projects." 
(E) = Article in English


  • Rooz Online releases the text of Supreme Leader Khamenei's speech to the Society of Scholars at the Theological Seminary in Qom three months ago:
    • "At one time attempts were made, both in slogans and in practice, to create dual leadership. They really attempted this and invested in it... Dual authority does not mean that two apparatuses are at the service of the state... What it meant was that the leader and the guardian jurist, and all what we say and the revolution has had ever since the beginning, should be removed from their decisive position. And that they should no longer be fasl al-khetab [having the final say] and a rival should be created... This was not only a domestic issue. Back then the Americans and Europeans talked about something similar and included it in their propaganda."
    • "In the ninth and tenth cabinets, ever since the coming of Mr. Ahmadinejad, there is no longer discussion on dual authority. There is a unity of authority, meaning that the cabinet, the leader and the bureaucracy are following the same path. I say this to you decisively and with determination. Of course, this does not mean that there is no conflict of opinion… Yes, there are such things and it has always been like this, and it continues so. There are differences between my viewpoints and the president’s, and they are not few. There are several issues that we have conflicting views about. On some occasions, when the issue is clear and confirmed to me, I say 'Sir, this should not be done.' Well, he [Ahmadinejad] really listens and it is stopped. On other occasions, matters are not so clear to me so that I can say it should not be done, but I do not approve of what is being done. There are many such instances. But in different fields, there is mainly agreement."
    • "There are also certain areas where I don't intervene. I don't intervene in economic problems at all. I do not consider myself an expert on such issues. There are conflicting points in different issues and different arguments are made. I was always expected to intervene. There were some who wanted to intervene in issues such as the exchange rate and increase or decrease of the interest rate in the banking sector, but I would not intervene."
    • "Now, think about the issue of Persianism and other matters to which you pointed at the other day. I have really not found out if they are trying to create something against Islam. Of course, I don't like what they are doing... Yesterday, the gentleman who is responsible for those things came to me at lunch and raised an issue. I said, 'Sir, don't speak so much about Persianism.’ I even threatened him. I don't like this. Do they really want to establish an Iranian school [of thought] as the opposite of the school of Islam, I really don't understand. Looking at the evidence in their work one can't find out. Here and there they may commit mistakes, and they do commit mistakes…" 
    • "In the past [during the Khatami presidency] things were done which would be a source of concern and nervousness. Now, when the president meets anyone in the world and negotiates with him, I would not be worried about his statements. I even don't know [what Ahmadinejad] says, but I am not concerned. I know that nothing will be uttered against the direction of the revolution and the general policy of the regime. No such issues will advance, even if they say a couple of words as a way of politeness. Nothing will come out of it, which makes me assured. It was not so in the past. A moment of inattention and something was done."
    • "They [the Rafsanjani and Khatami administrations] approached me and said 'We want to ask for a loan from the World Bank.' Gentlemen who are aware of monetary issues and the like know how dangerous this is. We even did not need it, but they said 'We want to borrow.' I asked not to do such things. First, it was the president who asked me about eight or nine years ago. And I retorted that this was not expedient and asked not to do it. They left, but sent two to three economic, monetary and banking experts of the cabinet to talk to me, saying 'Sir, we need this; we have no choice but doing it.' I saw that it was all planned. They really wanted to do this. During the next meeting with the president, I said 'Sir, if you did this I will declare my opposition on it.' They were frightened and did not dare. This is how things were, but such things don't happen today."
    • "[Criticizing the Rafsanjani presidency] Back then, [Helmut] Kohl was the Chancellor of Germany. He had a good relationship with our president. They would talk on the phone with each other...  I approved of this relationship. He [Kohl] had also an agent who would travel repeatedly between Iran [and Germany] and would hold negotiations. One night the president gave me a piece of paper and said: 'We have written this to pass over to the German representative when he arrives from Germany.' When I looked at it they had written: 'Please write your expectations from the Islamic Republic. What do you expect from us?!' This was a very dangerous issue. I was most displeased. I sent a message to the effect: 'He is very wrong to have expectations from us. Who is he anyway?!' Back then, the German government was the only European country which had a relationship with the Islamic Republic... Who is Germany to treat the Islamic Republic in such a way? He [Kohl] had also asked ‘anything you want from Europe, tell us and we will do it for you.’ And they [the Rafsanjani cabinet] prepared a list that 'We want this and we want that.' I said: 'You want to have relations with Belgium, Italy or Austria, why do you tell him [Kohl]? …The mistakes were fundamental and principal. One moment of inattention and such calamities would arise. I am telling you that such things don't happen today."
    • "Back then they [the Khatami cabinet] came to us… and said: 'Sir, we want to declare that we recognize the two states in Palestine!' Two states! Just see the degree of deviation that they even did not understand. We showed them a sour face and much more. Finally, after two to three meetings and discussions, the issue was taken off the table. No such thing happens today. Back then one could not be sure. This is not so today. There is a unity of direction. They [the Ahmadinejad cabinet] are moving ahead."


  • Iranian Ambassador to Beirut Qazanfar Roknabadi accuses the U.S. and Israel of impeding establishment of security in Lebanon, saying that Washington does not want the Lebanese people to live in peace and stability.
  • [E] Ahmadinejad in a phone conversation with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Teyyip Erdogan called on all countries of the region to increase their efforts for the settlement of the crisis in Lebanon.


  • South Korea's Ambassador to Tehran expresses his government's wish to expand relations with Iran, and the Iranian Energy Minister stresses that Iran is the most important energy exporter to South Korea.
  • [E] Iranian and Syrian energy officials endorsed an agreement to construct a pipeline for transferring Iran's natural gas to the Middle-Eastern country, a Syrian official announced on Thursday.

Iran/Afghanistan Relations

  • Interior Minister Mohammad-Mostafa Najjar: "300,000 Afghan children go to school in Iran... 17,000 Afghan citizens have graduated from Iranian universities and higher education institutions. 11,000 Afghan students are currently studying in Iran, and 3,700 Afghan students were admitted to Iranian universities this year... Our country has spent more than $700 million in order to close the eastern and south eastern borders in order to stop transit of narcotics..."
  • Afghanistan’s Chamber of Commerce has asked Afghan traders not to buy Iranian merchandise in response to Iran’s fuel blockade.
  • [E] Tehran is prepared to provide the Afghan officials and police with its experiences in fighting drug-trafficking, Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said.

Photos of the Day



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