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 Analyst Will Fulton and Iran Intern Amir Toumaj, with contributor John Lesnewich. 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.
- Advisor to the Supreme Leader Hojjat al-Eslam Ali Akbar Nategh Nouri reaffirmed the Supreme Leader’s role “as the determinant of the system’s framework and policies” and reacted to President Rouhani’s telephone conversation with President Obama:
- “It is not like that at all [that Rouhani deviated from the Revolution’s fundamental principles]…. Some of those who criticized do not pay attention to the point that the trip to New York was primarily to untie the knot of the problems of the people and the system.”
- “In the matter of the telephone conversation between the two Presidents, the Revolution’s value, fundamentals and basics were also not violated or trampled. In any case, they requested for this meeting. Why don’t those who oppose it point out that during the trip the American president’s numerous requests to meet with Iran were denied by Iran, and that the media wrote that this matter humiliated Obama?”
- Cultural Advisor to the President Hesameddin Ashna reiterated President Hassan Rouhani’s nuclear weapons disarmament position and said, “Iran will never retreat from its position of rights.” He added, “Western officials’ change of tone is not as important as a change in behavior, just as a change of our tone is not as important for Westerners as a change in our behavior.” Regarding sanctions, he said, “These sanctions have had no effect on Iran’s missile program because the Islamic Republic’s missile program will never cease,” and urged the complete lifting of all Western sanctions.
- At the open session of Parliament, MPs praised President Hassan Rouhani’s diplomatic efforts. MP Behrouz Nemati stated, “I have a serious warning to the American president. After meeting with the Zionist regime's President, Obama has not received the Supreme Leader’s message, because Iran’s maneuvering power increases with heroic flexibility; we neither fear you nor are we captivated by your smile.”
- Combatant Clergy Society member Hojjat al-Eslam Jafar Shojouni stated, “The cost of our failure in these negotiations is very high. In this case, it will subvert the administration! The matter of sanctions relief must be the first condition for continuing negotiations.” He added, “We cannot ignore sixty years of America’s hostility with Iran in these negotiations; the nation will not forgive it.”
- Judiciary Branch Strategic Deputy and former IRGC commander Brig. Gen. Mohammad Bagher Zolghadr also warned about negotiations with the United States and said, “We have a long list of America’s betrayals before and after the Revolution that are unforgivable…. America’s benefit from these negotiations is higher.”
- Lebanese Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Na’im Qassem praised the telephone conversation between Presidents Rouhani and Obama as demonstrative of “Iran’s place and power in the international arena.” He added, “Some criticized the Resistance for standing with Iran. Now the Resistance’s opposition is ashamed and does not even dare announce the names of those who supported them. Supporting nations in the path of Resistance against occupiers is an honor for Iran.”
- Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif reacted to President Barack Obama’s “all options on the table” statement last night and stated, “President Obama must have stability in his position to strengthen mutual confidence. Zig-zag movements destroy mutual confidence and tarnish America’s reputation. President Obama’s imagination that Iran negotiates based on threats and illegal sanctions is an insult to a nation [and] incorrect and arrogant behavior.” In a separate interview, Zarif criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as the “most isolated” individual at the United Nations General Assembly and added, “During the Iranian people’s election, perhaps, except for the Zionist regime, Canada is the only government that pursues a different outlook regarding the Iranian people.” He then considered his meeting with Secretary of State John Kerry as “positive” on his Facebook page.
- Ahlul Bayt News Agency reported that President Rouhani accepted the Saudi Arabian King’s invitation to attend Hajj, but Foreign Minister of Middle East and North Africa Deputy Hossein Amir Abdollahian later announced that Rouhani cannot attend due to "compressed plans.”
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesman Marziyeh Afkhami also reacted to President Obama’s “military options” comments after his meeting with Israeli PM Netanyahu and stated, “We expect American officials to behave based on realistic policies with the Islamic Republic of Iran.” Regarding the Bahraini Foreign Minister’s reported statements encouraging the assassination of Lebanese Hezbollah Secretary Hassan Nasrallah, she said, “We have also heard this news. If it is correct, the statements of this respected Bahraini official is very odd. These expressions are to the benefit of the Zionist regime and its design is considered the spreading of government terrorism.”
- Turkish President Abdollah Gul announced that Iran will help Turkey free two kidnapped Turkish pilots in Lebanon.
Military and Security
- IRGC Imam Hassan Mojtaba Division (Alborz Province) Public Relations released a statement denying circulated reports about the assassination of a division member. It added that the matter is under investigation.
Artesh Navy Commander Admiral Habibollah Sayyari spoke on the recent achievements, projects, and operations of his forces in international waters, including drones, submarines, and changing threat assessments. He also warned foreign forces to stay out of Iran’s waters and blamed them for the insecurity of the region:
- “If it were not for the Navy in the last four years, the economic cycle would have seen damaged because our tankers have been continuously threatened.”
- “Khatam ol-Anbia Base was controlled in the south during the [Iran-Iraq War], and of course today it still operates under the Supreme Leader. Other bases operate as subsidiaries to this base, including the Naval Khatam ol-Anbia Bases, one of which is connected to the Artesh and the other to the IRGC Navy. The Commanders of the IRGC, Artesh, and their naval commanders are present in these two bases.” Sayyari also spoke of the Artesh building another naval base in the north of the country.
- “In the last 21 years, our progress in submarines cannot be compared to the rest of the world, because today, we can repair our own heavy submarines with complete reliance on internal knowledge and domestic forces. Building our own Ghadir class submarines has also begun, such that today we have built and operated this submarine. We also have a bigger Fateh class submarine that shows our capabilities in building various submarines, which will hopefully be unveiled in the coming year.”
- The Supreme Leader’s Representative to the IRGC Hojjat al-Eslam Ali Saidi spoke on the US government shutdown and what he refers to as the inevitable fall of capitalism:
- “Two or three times during the last three decades, the sponsors of capitalism have sought reform and have taken many steps to counter uprisings and fronts. This shows that the capitalist worldview is void, and will surely be on the path to decline sooner or later…. This system will fall sooner or later because it relies on greed, individualism, and unlimited and unrestricted freedom. This leads to a class system in which 99% are on one side and 1% are on the other.
- “The many American actions towards diplomacy with Iran provide a context to make the people of the world aware, as well as to make it clear that they are not truthful in their own stances and that decision-making in the US is not united. American politicians do not have the freedom to decide, but the Zionists and Zionist lobby have a great deal of power. Recent events in America have struck blows to the American economy, so they have 17 trillion dollars of debt. Yet the Zionists follow a radical path, and the Americans will inevitably act on their words and do not dare stand against them. There are no more hidden truths, and humanity is slowly understanding that its fundamental problem is kufr [non-believing] leaders and a kufr system. As long as their problem is kufr leaders, they will rise against them and begin a movement standing against a capitalist, evil, and kufr system.”
- Armed Forces General Staff Industrial Preparation, Support, and Research Deputy Brig. Gen. Mohammad Hejazi spoke at the first “Necessity of Developing Weapons and Airbases for Future Battles” Conference held at Imam Hossein University on the future direction of Iran’s air capabilities and its effect on America’s call for negotiations:
- “Despite the gap that exists in the [aerospace] manufacturing field, with scientific enlightenment and movement, it is possible to bring home these important achievements so that we can hope to close this gap in the near future. In recent years we have brought about important achievements.”
- On the strategy of “responding to threats with threats” that the Supreme Leader described two years ago: “This strategy must come to be in operation, implementation, and action, meaning if our enemy presents achievements or capabilities, we must also present achievements and creative movements to counter them.”
- On recent UN meetings and the US: “We cannot imagine that with one smile their hostile stances and historical animosity towards Iran will be resolved. The space between the enemy’s smile and frown is very short, and likewise the tone of the US president changed after meeting with the Zionists.”
- “We cannot forget that the enemy is determined in its animosity. That is why we must always pay attention to preserving our readiness and reinforcing our defenses, so that we are powerful, capable, and able to speak from a position of strength during negotiations.”
- “The reason that America is currently calling for negotiations with Iran is because our resistance capabilities and ability to influence regional equations, as well as our power both in and out of the region, have caused the enemy to shrink from its past stances.”
- Deputy Minister of Defense Brig. Gen. Majid Bokaei echoed Hejazi’s rhetoric at the same conference:
- “The time between a smile and the enemy’s frown is short and we must not be deceived by these smiles, because they do not accept our system and they are in conflict with it. Even if the nuclear issue is solved they will make excuses with another position.”
- “This is a political game for in order to gain concessions and we hope that the government, with the path that it has taken, can show the world the evil nature of America and the dominant system.”
- The Tehran Stock Exchange is continuing its growth trend and increased by 0.8% earlier today.
- Head of the Iranian Oil Contracts Revision Committee Mehdi Hosseini expressed confidence that “sanctions will be lifted soon” and said, “With the alleviation of roadblocks to investment in the framework of national interest, the Iranian oil industry will be the largest and most secure absorber of international investment.”
Photo of the Day
- Armed Forces General Staff Deputy for Industrial Preparation, Support, and Research Brig. Gen. Mohammad Hejazi addresses the First National Necessity of Expanding Airbase Conference.