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.
Unnamed MP disclosed details about a meeting focusing on energy consumption, prices, and targeted subsidies, between the Rouhani administration and parliament:
- “The president announced that if we do not take action immediately, we will absolutely be stricken with gas cuts next winter. In the same way, if current electricity conditions continue, we will also be confronted with electricity cuts next year. For this reason we have returned electricity shares from the targeted subsidies to electricity companies.”
- “The president believes that targeted subsidies are a cause of the lack of investment in electricity, energy, and businesses, but we have no alternative other than to implement phase two of the targeted subsidies.”
- “In implementing phase two, different energy carriers will have different rates. Electricity prices will increase gently…However, gasoline prices, due to the dangers of air pollution and low impact on production, will increase rapidly.”
- Tehran Interim Friday Prayer Leader Hojjat al-Eslam Ahmad Khatami responded to statements made by US officials, saying “Obama and Kerry’s gossip targets our nation’s pride. We must respond to them with the same level of cultural Resistance. Thirty-five years of the Iranian people’s honor is due to Resistance, standing [firm], and your chants of death to America.”
- Friday Prayer Leader Hojjat al-Eslam Sheikh Mostafa Bagheri-benabi issued a warning about the dangers of takfiri currents, which look to commit “indescribable catastrophes in the name of Islam… There is no doubt that takfiris are tools used by America, Israel, and Arab reactionaries.” He also called on “security forces to increase their observance in the country… [so] takfiris cannot breach this region.”
- Representative of the Supreme Leader in Kashan Ayatollah Abdolnabi Nemazi responded to statements made by US officials in his sermon, saying “These threats are a sign of inability, because if the enemies were able to act on their own threats, they would not resort to slogans.”
- Ahvaz Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Ali Mousavi Jazayeri spoke about the Geneva II conference, claiming “This conference ultimately accompanied the failure of the enemies of Syria. America and its allies were unable to achieve their ominous goals in Syria.”
- Ayatollah Gholam Ali Naimabadi delivered a sermon in Bandar Abbas about the Iranian people’s resolve: “While our Revolution was a cultural and moral revolution based on love and kindness, the West and the Great Satan [the US] continue to speak about bloodshed, war, and [placing] the military option on the table. They must know that we are a nation that will not give up our rights due to these hollow words.”
- Former Chairman of the Cultural Heritage and Tourism Organization Mohammad Ali Nojafi announced, “President Rouhani has graciously accepted my resignation.”
- Founding member of the Combatant Clergy Association (CCA) [Rouhani’s party] Hojjat al-Eslam Mohammad Hassan Rahimian spoke about the participation of some party members in the 2009 protests, saying “The CCA as a group did not have a hand in this… I know there are now some in the association who are close followers of the Revolution and the Imam, while others were unveiled in the  Sedition document as having a destructive role in it.”
Military and Security
- Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Navy Commander Brig. Gen. Ali Fadavi said “The enemies of the Revolution create the false illusion in the minds of our youth that the basis of Iran’s progress is through direct relations with America. But have those who have direct relations with America progressed more than Iran? It is not possible to find a regional or non-regional country that has progressed more in different areas than Iran.”
- Defense Minister Brig. Gen. Hossein Dehghan said “There is not a day in which we do not witness new achievements. On Saturday, at the beginning of the Ten Days of Dawn [marking Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s return to Iran from exile on February 1, 1979], we will announce news of the Defense Ministry’s new achievements.”
- Head of the Basij Organization Brig. Gen. Mohammad Reza Naghdi discussed Iran’s history of resistance against the US, “In a country with fifty thousand US American advisors and in which the Savak had permission to take any freedoms from Iranian men and women, our Revolution was successful. Likewise, we stood against superpowers during the [Iran-Iraq War].
- “The martyrs serve as the final word for anyone who says that we are not able to stand against America and wants the country to surrender in its conflict with the superpowers. Global Arrogance [the West] wants to consume the Revolution. In their imagination, they think that our nation will be forced to surrender, whereas our nation does not surrender and will continue on the path of the martyrs.”
Diplomacy and Regional Events
- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif arrived in Germany for the Munich Security Conference, where he was officially welcomed by German President Joachim Gauck. Iran’s nuclear program and the Syrian crisis are reportedly two key subjects of the conference. Zarif is scheduled to speak at the conference and will also have meetings with other world leaders, including German Foreign Minister Frank Walter Steinmeier.
- Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian talked about the Geneva II conference, saying “It was completely clear to observers that Geneva II would not succeed. One reason was the selection of they Syrian opposition … by the West. The second was the exit of some of the opposition from the conference. The third was the American effort to achieve its desired outcome, meaning the outcome they have been unable to achieve over the last three years.”
- Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Abdollahian issued a warning to Yemen following the death of an Iranian diplomat two weeks ago, saying “We have officially announced to [Yemeni] officials, that if they cannot secure the safety of our diplomats, they need to inform us so that we can provide some assurances in this regard.”
- According to Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), following an invitation by radical cleric Abu Saif al-Ansari last week, the terrorist group Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS) began to form branches in Tripoli, the largest city in northern Lebanon. The Lebanese Army has reportedly stepped up security in the city in response.
- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif called the Munich Security Conference “a good opportunity for us to explain our positions.” He added, “We are now entering important discussions about the nuclear issue on an international stage. It is necessary to speak with and present the real views of Iranians to people who are trying to present an unsuitable imagining of Iran’s nuclear debate.”
- Conflicting reports over the scheduling of the next round of nuclear negotiations have emerged. According to a Russian diplomat, the next round is scheduled to take place on February 18 in New York. However, the EU rejected this claim, saying the time and place have yet to be determined.
- The Central Bank claims inflation is continuing to fall, dropping by .9% over the last month from 39.3% to 38.4%.
- Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz announced, following his recent trip to Iran, that if the two sides can agree on a price, Turkey may double its amount of natural gas imports from Iran.
Photo of the Day
- Zoroastrians celebrate Sadeh in Kerman province.