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
- Principlist faction MP Gholam Ali Haddad Adel, the father-in-law of Supreme Leader Khamenei’s son Mojtaba, urged the Foreign Ministry not to “remain indifferent” to the “meddling” statements of United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and “[EU foreign policy chief] Ashton’s behavior.” He said, “Our country’s internal matters do not need the Westerners’ opinion and we best know our expediency.”
- Head of the Followers of the Line of the Imam [Khomeini] and Supreme Leader Front and Parliament Second Vice Chairman Mohammad Reza Bahonar echoed this criticism, saying “If the gentlemen are incapable and cannot protect the system’s strategic policies, then we must think of something else.”
- National Security and Foreign Policy (NSFP) Parliamentary Commission member and former senior Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commander Brig. Gen. Mohammad Esmail Kowsari also criticized the UN human rights report, calling UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon a puppet of “America, England and the Zionists.” Kowsari then warned that the Rouhani administration’s lack of a “firm” response would imply that “Rouhani has had discussions with the Americans about these prior to the presidential elections…”
- Unofficial Supreme Leader organ Kayhan Newspaper Managing Director Hossein Shariatmadari stated, “Those who call the previous administration illegal are the same who were present in the  sedition,” reacting to Head of the Expediency Discernment Council Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani’s recent interview where he allegedly called the former Ahmadinejad administration “illegal.”
- Yesterday’s unofficial meeting between several MPs and Intelligence Minister Hojjat al-Eslam Mahmoud Alavi, regarding EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton’s meeting with dissidents, led to tense exchanges between MP Mehdi Kouchakzadeh and Alavi:
- Kouchakzadeh directed “insulting” and “unprecedented” statements towards both Alavi and the Rouhani administration when Alavi refused to disclose the identity of his “Twenty-three year old spiritual son,” who accompanied him to the Parliament.
- The Principlist MP reportedly shouted, “By God there has been a coup d’etat in this country or else the President would not announce that the treasury is empty. The Foreign Minister would not say that a bomb disables everything… Hashemi Rafsanjani says that [Ahmadinejad administration] is illegal. I must tell Hashemi that he and his entire people are illegal. By the Qur’an there has been a coup and the Revolution is in danger!”
- Following the tense exchanges between MPs and the Intelligence Minister Hojjat al-Eslam Mahmoud Alavi, an unnamed source reportedly close to the Alavi stated, “It is best for the media to allow ambiguities and matters between the Parliament and the administration to be alleviated in a calm environment away from tension.”
- MPs also summoned Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to Parliament regarding the meetings of European officials with human rights activists in the past three months, asking him “Are such meetings another part of the Geneva Accord’s unwritten contents?”
- Islamic Culture and Guidance Minister Ali Jannati announced, “The duty of the Guidance Ministry is alleviating the Supreme Leader’s cultural concerns in all arenas…[He] has always warned about the cultural invasion of the West…”
President Hassan Rouhani reaffirmed his commitment to constructive relations with neighboring Arab countries, “especially countries of the sensitive Persian Gulf area.” Rouhani also commented on his Oman trip, noting that Iranian and Omani investors discussed expanding bilateral investments.
- Iran and Oman released a joint statement pledging extensive bilateral cooperation and Iran’s “continuation of [nuclear talks with the P5+1] until reaching a final agreement.”
- Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh is scheduled to meet with Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak and First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Igor Shuvalov in Moscow today.
- Iranian Cultural Attaché to Kuwait Abbas Khameh Yar acknowledged “cold” and even “challenging” relations between Iran and its Arab neighbors, but added that the interests of all sides lie in reaching “a mutual understanding on fundamental matters in bilateral and regional relations,” despite “some differences.”
Military and Security
- Senior Military Advisor to the Supreme Leader IRGC Maj. Gen. Yahya Rahim Safavi called Iran “Islam’s banner holder” and said, “Today we will remain loyal to the Supreme Leader just as we were loyal to him during the era of the Islamic Republic’s founder.”
- Representative of the Supreme Leader to the Basij Organization Hojjat al-Eslam Mohammad Reza Toyserkani asserted that the Intelligence Minister must “answer to public opinion and value forces regarding the meeting of [EU foreign policy chief] Catherine Ashton and elements of the  sedition.”
- Social Security Organization Managing Director Taghi Nourbakhsh announced, “This is an organization…that has an important place in the country’s economic arena… [It is] a social and economic organization that produces 40% of the country’s medicine.” Nourbakhsh then pledged the organization’s commitment to the Supreme Leader’s “resistance economy” policies.
Photo of the Day
- King of Oman Sultan Qaboos bids farewell to President Hassan Rouhani.