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


  • [E] In his annual Nowruz address for the Persian New Year yesterday, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei named this year to be “The Year of Economy and Culture with National Determination and Jihadi Management.”  
  • Earlier today, Supreme Leader Khamenei called the economy, culture, and science key in strengthening a nation and said, “Culture is more important than the economy.” He also dismissed the notion that sanctions prevent economic progress and said, “We should not look upon the enemy to see when it will lift these sanctions…To hell with it! We should see what we can do ourselves”:
    • Resistance economy means an economy…that is not disrupted by global crises and policies of America and the rest; it is an economy that is dependent on the people…[and] is a knowledge-based economy.”
    • “it is a justice-centered economy, meaning that it does not solely rely on capitalist economic indicators, like  national growth and GDP…But it does not mean that existing scientific indicators should be ignored. But work can be done based on the axis of ‘justice.’  Justice in this program does not mean division of poverty, rather it means increasing wealth and national wealth.”
    • Khamenei added that fulfillment of the resistance economy requires officials and investors to support “national production.”
    • “Cultural officials must be vigilant of cultural breaches…We do not want to say that all cultural harms are the work of foreigners; we are responsible as well…But we cannot forget the enemy’s presence in cultural matters. They have mobilized all of their propaganda systems and their capabilities since the early days of the revolution to make the people faithless in the foundations of this revolution.”
    • “We cannot stand by watching those in the country who are making efforts in axing the roots of the youth’s faith.”
    • “No one dares talk about the Holocaust in European countries, which it is not clear whether the principle of this [historical] matter is factual, or what shape it was if it were factual…They are completely totally strict about their red lines…How do they [the West] expect us to ignore the revolutionary redlines of our country and youth?” 
  • President Hassan Rouhani affirmed the Supreme Leader’s emphasis on economy and culture and said, “We must all hold hands so we can take the country’s economy and culture to an ever more blossoming sublimation.” 
  • Interim Tehran Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Kazem Sedighi echoed the Supreme Leader’s statements on “resistance economy” and on confronting “those who want to crush national culture,” calling them “ignorant” or “foreign mercenaries.” Sedighi then criticized the administration, saying “Why is the shutting down of newspapers that insult and have contempt for the Qur’an met with protest, but when newspapers that criticize the administration are  closed, nothing is said? It is necessary for the administration and critics to show more tolerance.” 
  • Kashmar city representative MP Mohammad Esmailniya announced that the Parliament and administration “are seriously pursuing the formation of joint workgroups” to “fulfill economic epic.” 


  • Parliamentary Economic Commission Chairman MP Arsalan Fathipour stated, “The performance of previous administrations in the economic and cultural arenas has placed the country in such a situation where the Supreme Leader has called 1393 [new Iranian calendar year] the year of economy and culture with national determination and jihadi management…The fundamental infrastructure of resistance economy, before any material matter, is a change in outlooks and approaches. In other words, in order to become resistant against foreigners, the country’s consumption culture must change. This matter becomes more important when we realize the level of consumption in Iran, especially fossil fuel energy consumptions, are multiple times higher than the world’s average consumption.” 

Nuclear Issue

  • In an interview with Shargh Daily, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that the Supreme Leader and the President have been given “detailed reports” during ongoing nuclear negotiations. He added, “It is possible that an opinion has not been given to us on some matters. In such matters, we acted based on our interpretation of frameworks that have been determined for us. A number of the system’s officials determined the frameworks. I have always emphasized that I will move within those frameworks.” 
  • Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said that “it will be clear” shortly “whether Western countries are acting honestly” regarding ongoing nuclear negotiations. He then discussed Iranian reaction to a potential Western violation of the nuclear accord: “We will not lose anything. It is not necessary now for us to say how we will react to that measure, because that scenario has been designed.” Larijani added that it is not to the “benefit” of the West in pursuing human rights and “the manufactured file of terrorism” at the potential end of the nuclear matter. 
  • Legal and International Affairs Deputy to the Foreign Minister and senior nuclear negotiator Abbas Araghchi expressed optimism regarding negotiations with the P5+1 and said, “We have been placed in a good path in these negotiations.” 


Military and Security

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