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 AEI Critical Threats Project Iran Analysts Marie Donovan, Paul Bucala, and Caitlin Shayda Pendleton and contributors Ken Hawrey and Shayan Enferadi. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.
Key Takeaway: Defense Minister IRGC Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan will meet with his Russian and Syrian counterparts tomorrow in Iran as the three countries posture to ramp up operations in Syria.
Iranian media reported that Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan will meet with Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and Syrian Defense Minister Fahd Jassem al Freij in Tehran tomorrow. State media reported that they will be discussing “anti-terrorism cooperation between Moscow, Damascus, and Tehran” as well as Russia’s “nine-month air campaign against terrorist groups in Syria.” The tempo of Russian air strikes have escalated over the past week as Jabhat al Nusra and other rebel groups launched a large-scale offensive in the countryside south of Aleppo. Meanwhile, at least seven Iranians have been reported killed in the recent fighting.
The IRGC’s Fars provincial unit announced the arrests of 12 individuals accused of being part of an “influence and cultural corruption network in cyberspace.” The arrests were reportedly part of the “spider” operation to target the online activity of Iranian users. On May 16, Tehran Prosecutor-General Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi announced that police arrested eight Iranians for posting pictures online of women without headscarves as part of this operation.
- Matthew McInnis analyzes President Hassan Rouhani’s ability to push through economic reforms in “Will Rouhani have a tough road to re-election?”
- Follow the latest electoral developments in Parliament and the Assembly of Experts, including the parliament speaker election, in the Critical Threats Project’s “Iran Elections Tracker: Updates and Analysis.”
Military and Security
Dehghan to meet with Russian and Syrian defense ministers. Defense Minister IRGC Brig. Gen. Hossein Dehghan will meet with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Syrian Defense Minister Fahd Jassem al Freij tomorrow in Tehran. IRNA reported that the defense ministers are expected to discuss “anti-terrorism cooperation between Moscow, Damascus, and Tehran and the achievements of Russia’s nine-month air campaign against terrorists in Syria as well as the situation in Iraq.”(Press TV) (IRNA) (E) (Aftabir)
Iranian officials arrest 12 individuals as part of an “influence and cultural corruption network.” The IRGC’s Fars provincial unit announced the arrests of 12 individuals allegedly part of an “influence and cultural corruption network in cyberspace.” (Gerdab)
IRGC Navy Commander: “UAVs are the fifth pillar of IRGC naval forces.” IRGC Navy Commander Ali Fadavi said that drones have become an important instrument of Iran’s naval forces and stressed drones’ combat and operational capabilities during remarks at the IRGC Navy’s drone command headquarters. He added that drones are now considered the “fifth pillar” of the IRGC Navy’s capabilities after “vessels, commandos, missiles, and air-sea equipment.” (Tasnim News Agency) (E) (Defa Press)
- Former Quds Force commander: Iran is among the top five countries for missile accuracy. Former Quds Force Commander IRGC Brig. Gen. Ahmad Vahidi praised the accuracy of Iran’s ballistic missiles during an interview with Tasnim News Agency. Vahidi also noted that Iran’s missile program has helped the development of its space program, stating, “Without missile power, we could never put a satellite in orbit.” Recent activity by Iran’s ballistic missile program, such as the as the test-firing of the new Emad-type missile, suggest that Iran is currently focused on developing the accuracy of its arsenal of ballistic missiles. (Tasnim News Agency)
Regional Developments and Diplomacy
- Iran’s IAEA representative: The IAEA must protect our confidential information now “more than before.” Reza Najafi urged the IAEA to take greater care “to protect Iran’s confidential information” following a meeting of the IAEA Board of Governors in Vienna on June 8. Iran’s Permanent Representative to the IAEA Board of Governors added that his request was prompted by Iran’s upcoming submission of a report to the IAEA in order to comply with the IAEA’s Additional Protocol. (IRNA)
Rouhani criticizes media for “only” raising economic expectations. President Hassan Rouhani discussed the media’s role in implementing the Resistance Economy, a doctrine designed to insulate the Iranian economy from external pressure, during remarks on June 8. He stated, “Unfortunately, some media have only raised society’s expectations while covering the Resistance Economy. In return, the role of struggle, collective effort, and hope in the future are dimmed, and this is fundamentally against the policies of the Resistance Economy.” (IRNA)
- Foreign investment skyrockets. Amir Hamooni, the managing director of the Iran Fara Bourse Co. (IFB), Iran’s over-the-counter market for securities, told reporters that since the beginning of the Persian New Year (March 20, 2016), foreign investors have invested around $57.7 million in the Farar Bourse, which is roughly equal to the total amount of investment during the previous Persian calendar year. (Tehran Times) (E)