Iran News Round Up

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

A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by AEI Critical Threats Project Iran Analysts Mehrdad Moarefian, Marie Donovan, Paul Bucala, with contributors Ryan Melvin and Mondona Salahshoor.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.

Key TakeawayIranian state television featured a rare debate between the founder of a reformist political party and a conservative politician. IRGC Brigadier General Hadi Kajbaf, who was killed in Syria in April, was buried today in Khuzestan province.

Iranian state TV granted rare airtime to a senior reformist political figure by featuring a rare debate between founding member of reformist party Etemad Meli Javad Haghshenas and conservative Hamid Reza Taraghi. Reformist and former presidential candidate Mehdi Karroubi, who has been held under arrest for several years, formed the Etemad Meli [National Trust] Party in 2005. Haghshenas praised President Rouhani’s foreign policy, particularly the current nuclear negotiations.

In a meeting with Syrian government officials and political activists, the National Security and Foreign Policy (NSFP) Parliamentary Committee Chairman Alaeddin Boroujerdi reiterated Iran’s support for the Assad government; he claimed “Iran will spare no effort to support the government and people of Syria.”

IRGC Brigadier General Hadi Kajbaf was buried today in Shustar, a city in Khuzestan province. Kajbaf was a high-level IRGC commander who was killed on April 19 in Deraa province, Syria. A banner describing Kajbaf at a memorial service as well as a portrait of him in Fars News indicate Kajbaf likely held the rank of Brigadier General 2nd Class, not Major General as reported by Reuters.

 

Official Statements

  • Pourdastan: “We are confronting Americans’ new threats.” Artesh Ground Forces Commander Brig. Gen. Ahmad Reza Pourdastan stated that “with the power of the armed forces and the guidance of the Supreme Leader, all conspiracies will be thwarted.” (YJC)http://www.yjc.ir/fa/news/5234275/%D8%A7%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%B2-%D8%A8%D8%A7-%D8%AA%D9%87%D8%AF%DB%8C%D8%AF%D9%87%D8%A7%DB%8C-%D8%AC%D8%AF%DB%8C%D8%AF-%D8%A2%D9%85%D8%B1%DB%8C%DA%A9%D8%A7%DB%8C%DB%8C%E2%80%8C%D9%87%D8%A7-%D9%85%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AC%D9%87-%D9%87%D8%B3%D8%AA%DB%8C%D9%85

 

Military and Security

  • Mohsen Rezaei appears in IRGC uniform at funeral service for Iran-Iraq War veterans.IRGC Maj. Gen. Mohsen Rezaei appeared in IRGC dress uniform at memorial services for 270 veterans of the Iran-Iraq War. (Defa Press) (IRINN)  http://www.defapress.ir/Fa/News/48435http://www.irinn.ir/news/111759/%D9%85%D8%AD%D8%B3%D9%86-%D8%B1%D8%B6%D8%A7%DB%8C%DB%8C-%D8%AF%D8%B1-%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%B5%D9%87-%D8%A8%DB%8C%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D9%84%D9%84%DB%8C-%D8%A8%D9%87-%D8%AE%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%B4-%D8%A7%D9%86%D9%82%D9%84%D8%A7%D8%A8%DB%8C-%D9%86%DB%8C%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B4%D8%AA%DB%8C%D9%85
     
  • Funeral services held for IRGC commander. Crowds gathered at the Ahvaz airport on June 13 to receive the remains of senior IRGC commander Hadi Kajbaf, who was reportedly one of the first Iranians to fight in the conflict in Syria and was involved with military operations in Deraa, Quneitra, and Damascus provinces. On April 19, he was killed in Busr al Harir, a town in the northeastern area of Deraa province. A funeral service was held in Ahvaz on June 15 and he was buried on June 16 in the city of Shushtar, located in Khuzestan province. A banner describing Kajbaf at a memorial service as well as a portrait of him in Fars News indicate Kajbaf likely held at least the rank of Brigadier General 2nd Class and possibly Brigadier General 1st Class. (Mashregh News) (Tasnim News Agency) (Fars News Agency) (ABNA) http://www.mashreghnews.ir/fa/news/408955/%D8%AA%D8%B5%D8%A7%D9%88%DB%8C%D8%B1%DB%8C-%D9%85%D9%86%D8%AA%D8%B4%D8%B1-%D9%86%D8%B4%D8%AF%D9%87-%D8%A7%D8%B2-%D8%B3%D8%B1%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B1-%D8%B4%D9%87%DB%8C%D8%AF-%D9%87%D8%A7%D8%AF%DB%8C-%DA%A9%D8%AC%D8%A8%D8%A7%D9%81 http://www.tasnimnews.com/Home/Single/768625 http://www.tasnimnews.com/Home/Single/770033 http://www.farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=13940323001341 http://fa.abna24.com/service/middle/archive/2015/04/21/685308/story.html

 

Regional Developments and Diplomacy

  • Boroujerdi: “Iran will spare no effort to support the government and people of Syria.”Parliamentarian Alaeddin Boroujerdi met with a group of “prominent” Syrian officials and political activists on June 14. The National Security and Foreign Policy (NSFP) Parliamentary Committee Chairman praised the Syrian nation and government’s resistance against terrorism. Boroujerdi stressed: “The Islamic Republic of Iran will stand alongside the government and people of Syria.” (ABNA)http://fa.abna24.com/service/iran/archive/2015/06/16/689312/story.html
     
  • Zarif meets with Mexican delegation. Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met with a Mexican parliamentary delegation today. During the visit, Zarif said that Iran was interested in strengthening economic, political, and cultural relations between the two countries. He added that oil, gas, renewable energy, the environment, and the car manufacturing sector were areas of possible cooperation. Zarif also stressed the need for cooperation and intelligence sharing between the two countries in order to combat “drug trafficking, terrorism, and organized crime.” (MFA) http://mfa.ir/index.aspx?siteid=1&fkeyid=&siteid=1&fkeyid=&siteid=1&pageid=176&newsview=345112
     
  • Kowsari met with Mexican counterpart in Tehran. Parliamentarian Mohammad Esmail Kowsari met with his Mexican counterpart on Monday. The National Security and Foreign Policy (NSFP) Parliamentary Commission member stated that the meeting explored avenues for future cooperation in various fields ranging from politics to science and technology. (Tasnim News Agency) http://www.tasnimnews.com/english/Home/Single/771164
     
  • Larijani met with Mexican senators Monday. Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani hosted a meeting Monday with a Mexican delegation led by Gabriela Cuevas Barron, the Chairwoman of the Mexico’s Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Larijani stressed that the parliaments have an influential role in strengthening the ties between both countries. Larijani also described Iran’s relationship with Mexico as "positive and flourishing." (Mehr News)http://en.mehrnews.com/news/107951/Parliaments-influential-in-deepening-Iran-Mexico-ties
     
  • Iraqi Kurdistan representative will visit Tehran to promote closer ties. Iranian officials will host Iraqi Kurdistan Region Judiciary Chief Ahmad Zobeir to discuss mutual cooperation with the region. (Fars News Agency) (E) http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940325001022
     
  • Qashqavi: Strengthening cooperation with Iraqi Kurdistan region is top priority. On Monday, Hassan Qashqavi met with the governor general of Sulaymaniyah province in Iraqi Kurdistan. The Deputy Foreign Minister discussed strengthening of economic ties and a joint fighting effort against ISIS with the governor general. (IRNA) (E)http://www.irna.ir/en/News/81647807/
     
  • Iraqi Kurdistan official meets with Qashqavi on cooperation joint effort against ISIS.Speaker of the Iraqi Kurdistan’s Regional Parliament Youssef Mohammad met with Hassan Qashqavi to discuss the need for security cooperation against regional threats, namely ISIS. The Deputy Foreign Minister described the prospect of future ties between the two regions as “bright.” (Fars News Agency) (E) http://english.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13940325001198

 

Domestic Politics

  • Haghshenas: “One of the best things…has been the nuclear negotiations.” Reformist Javad Haghshenas participated in a televised debate on June 15 with Senior Islamic Motalefeh Party member Hamid Reza Taraghi. The subject of the debate was Hassan Rouhani’s first two years in power. Haghshenas noted that “unfortunately the fixation of Iran’s foreign policy on the nuclear issue” has caused other elements of foreign policy to lose importance. Haghshenas noted that “we have encountered problems in the realm of foreign policy with our neighbors in the Persian Gulf…we ought to be solving these problems.” Haghshenas stated that “we have never had a government that to [Rouhani’s] extent has tried to solve the international investment issue: it is natural of course that there will be problems.” Haghshenas was a founding member of Etemad Meli [National Trust], a reformist political party led by 2009 presidential candidate Mehdi Karroubi. (IRIB) http://www.iribnews.ir/NewsBody.aspx?ID=85134

 

Nuclear Talks

  • Baeidinejad: Expert-level nuclear talks are “intensive” and “non-stop.” Hamid Baeidinejad discussed the ongoing P5+1 negotiations on his Instagram page. The Foreign Ministry’s Director for Political and International Affairs said the Iranian team of experts has been engaged in “non-stop” negotiations over the past ten days in Vienna. Baeidinejad described the “intensive” course of the negotiations as “unprecedented.” (Mashregh News)http://www.mashreghnews.ir/fa/news/429534/%D8%A8%D8%B9%DB%8C%D8%AF%DB%8C-%D9%86%DA%98%D8%A7%D8%AF-%D8%AA%D9%85%D8%B1%DA%A9%D8%B2-%D9%88-%D9%81%D8%B4%D8%B1%D8%AF%DA%AF%DB%8C-%D9%85%D8%B0%D8%A7%DA%A9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%AA-%DA%A9%D8%A7%D8%B1%D8%B4%D9%86%D8%A7%D8%B3%DB%8C-%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%B2%D8%A7%DB%8C%D8%B4-%DB%8C%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%AA%D9%87-%D8%A7%D8%B3%D8%AA
     
  • Shamkhani: Peaceful nuclear program to boost national confidence. Ali Shamkhani reiterated that the country's nuclear program has peaceful ambitions. The Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council further stated that the combination of Iranian scientists’ research capabilities and rare talent will spark national confidence and the belief in the power of the resistance economy. (ISNA)http://isna.ir/fa/news/94032615319/%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%AE%D8%A7%D9%86%DB%8C-%D9%87%D8%B1%DA%AF%D9%88%D9%86%D9%87-%D8%AA%D9%88%D8%A7%D9%81%D9%82%DB%8C-%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%B9-%D8%A7%D8%AF%D8%A7%D9%85%D9%87-%D8%A8%D8%B1%D9%86%D8%A7%D9%85%D9%87-%D8%B5%D9%84%D8%AD-%D8%A2%D9%85%DB%8C%D8%B2

 

Economy

  • Iran and Pakistan launch joint optic fiber network. Minister of Communications and Information Technology Mahmoud Vaezi inaugurated the optic fiber network known as the “IT Silk Road,” on June 15 in Sistan va Baluchistan province. (Press TV) (E)http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2015/06/15/416007/Iran-Pakistan-optic-fiber-
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