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.
- Mashhad Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Ahmad Alamolhoda accused Saudi Arabia of assisting the takfiri [non-believer] current during his most recent sermon: “Today it is clear which side is securing the takfiri current that has clearly been operating in Syria. Of course Qatar and Turkey have had a hand in protecting the takfiris to a great extent, but Saudi Arabia is also known as a principle agent in assisting the takfiri current.”
- Multiple MPs and politicians, including National Security and Foreign Policy (NSFP) Commission member and former senior IRGC commander Brig. Gen. Mohammad Esmail Kowsari, criticized the Institute for Compilation and Publication of Imam Khomeini’s works for its silence in the face of "the publication of material insulting to Imam Khomeini and the families of martyrs," after one Khomeini’s granddaughter posted what she claimed to be a joke told by Khomeini about widows of Iran-Iraq War martyrs.
Regional Developments and Diplomacy
Iraqi Hezbollah Mokhtar Army Leader Watheq al-Battat harshly criticized the Bahraini government:
- "If toppling Al Khalifah is difficult, [then] the continuation of its presence at the center of power is impossible.”
- “Al Khalifah is currently ruled only by the children and women of the ruling family and the support [it receives] from the occupier Saudi is a disgrace.”
- “Using a sectarian approach, the ruling family is discriminating between different groups of people and has taken a hostile position against the majority Shi’a, and in doing so, has completely separated itself from the Bahraini people."
- International Affairs Adviser to Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani, Hossein Sheikholeslam, announced that a three member Socialist delegate from the European Parliament will arrive in Tehran tomorrow for a four day stay to meet with various officials, including Ali Larijani, NSFP Parliamentary Commission Chairman Alaeddin Boroujerdi and Foreign Minister Mohamamd Javad Zarif.
Military and Security
- An editorial on Sobh-e Sadegh—the Revolutionary Guards’ weekly newspaper—urged Iranians to take more seriously the "soft war against the new generation":
- "Unfortunately, our cultural and cinema officials have almost left the scene empty and this invasion has become one way."
- "The important point is that, today, the children of Iran's homeland have many interactions with Western visual works."
- "In children and adolescent film festivals, the criterion of the ethical effects of movies must be dominant over technical and creative criterion..."
- Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Javad Zarif discussed the necessity of keeping details of ongoing negotiations confidential in post on Facebook. Zarif also assured that talks have thus far been positive: “The Geneva negotiations were beneficial and constructive. We also agreed that discussions would remain confidential. The confidentiality of discussions does not mean fearing disclosure of their contents. We are confident that we have no worries publicly announcing what was presented in the negotiations. However, our goal from these negotiations is to arrive at an understanding, not to use propaganda. My colleagues and I are prepared to bear the media pressure.”
National Security and Foreign Policy Parliamentary Commission Spokesman Hossein Naghavi Hosseini said that the results of the Geneva negotiations showed the success of Iran’s team:
- “The set of proposals that Iran presented were the focus of both sides’ discussions, which shows that the Iranian negotiations team was successful in putting the P5+1 on the track of Iran’s proposals.”
- “[Catherine] Ashton, EU Head of Foreign Policy, and the P5+1 Representatives looked at this [proposal] and were optimistic. They announced that Iran’s set of proposals is worthy of discussion, negotiation and following, which is considered a step forward.”
- NSFP member Avaz Heidarpour also had a positive outlook on the negotiations: “In the past, Iran’s negotiations with the P5+1 were clearly for [the sake of] negotiations, but this time the negotiations are for resolving an issue that is on the agenda of both sides…. Based on the study of Iran’s set of proposals and the recent Geneva negotiations, the Iranian negotiations team succeeded and was effective in Geneva.”
- NSFP member Mohammad Reza Mohseni Sani gave a similar evaluation of the negotiations: “In years past the P5+1 thought that they could get concessions from Iran, but they did not achieve these results. Therefore, they felt that they had lost their opportunity and had to bring forward a new approach during this [new] opportunity…. I think that, currently, given the results of the negotiations, a new, positive approach has been created for both sides.”
Qom Friday Prayer Leader and Director of Iran’s Religious Seminaries Ayatollah Hashem Hosseini Bushehri gave his assessment of the negotiations:
- “We want the right to enrich [uranium] on Iranian soil, and we are. of course. looking to create transparency.”
- On the sanctions: “This issue must be looked at rationally and optimistically. Up until now, both sides have stated their satisfaction with these negotiations, but it has also been announced that there are also many differences.”
- “Heroic flexibility means that in the diplomatic arena the possibility of diverse methods exists…. The heroic aspects were preserved during the negotiations because no Iranian bowed to the enemies.”
- Tehran Interim Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Mohammad Emami Kashani criticized the West in nuclear negotiations:
- "That Zionist officials who say that 'we must calculate security at the first degree' are lying, because the Zionists are aiming to introduce Islam as horrible and primitive. They are conducting crimes like that and say again that the Islamic Republic disrupts security."
- "The nuclear matter is only an excuse for hostility with Islam..."
- "The Islamic Republic's approach is a security approach and this must be paid correct attention to in the media."
- Many Friday Prayer leaders throughout the country announced their support for the new negotiations approach and emphasized maintaining "the Iranian nation's strength and greatness."
- The Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA) conducted a poll on its website in which 39% of respondents said that they believe the results of negotiations would be very positive and 36% said they would be somewhat positive.
Photo of the Day
- A photo exhibit at Tehran’s Silk Road Gallery displaying photographs of Iranian documentary photographers from 1978 to the present.