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 Mehrdad Moarefian and Iran Intern Amir Toumaj, with contributors Chris Rawlins, Diana Timmerman, and Marie Donovan. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.

 (E) = Article in English

Official Statements

  • Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Ground Forces Training Deputy Brig. Gen. Ali Akbar Pour Jamshidian attended a commemoration ceremony for the martyrs of the IRGC Ardebil Logistics and Support Unit, touting the ability of “Iran’s Islamic Revolution to preserve its stable security amid the most difficult conditions in the Middle East.” (Sepah News)
  • During Mashhad Friday prayers, Chief Prosecutor Hojjat al-Eslam Ebrahim Raisi said, “The Supreme Leader has stated that we will not enter anywhere that has American presence, because we consider them our enemy.” He called international coalition efforts against ISIS “a pre-designed plan to involve regional powers as well as Iran in their game.” (Fars News Agency)
  • National Security and Foreign Policy Parliamentary Commission member and former IRGC commander MP Mohammad Esmail Kowsari called the international American-led coalition against ISIS a guise “to occupy regional countries” and stated that “they seek to enter war against Syria and Iraq for this excuse”. He argued, “In such a case, the people of Syria and Iraqi will confront America just like [they did] with ISIS.” Kowsari called ISIS part of “U.S. policy to kill Muslims and cause religious division” and stated, “That Iran does not support military measure against ISIS is natural, because any cooperation with America in regional matters will have no result other than participation in the massacre of the region’s people.” (Tasnim News Agency
  • Parliamentary Deputy to the President Hojatt al-Eslam Majid Ansari attended a Kerman Province Water Council session with Energy Minister Hamid Chit Chiyan, describing Iran’s water crisis “more intensified,” encompassing “the entire country except one or two provinces,” thus leading the Rouhani administration to formulate policy responses to the crisis. Ansari announced that there is “no choice other than saving [water].” (Tabnak)

Regional Developments and Diplomacy

  • Head of the Iraqi Hezbollah Brigades Political Committee Hossein al-Ramahi briefed IRGC-affiliate Fars News Agency on the group’s “most important operations against ISIS,” in the areas of “Jarf al-Sakhr, Ibrahim bin Ali, al-Zeidan, Jasr al-Rafoush, al-Azim, and several points in crisis areas.” Al-Rahmi announced that the group has proposed a plan to clear al-Hawi village, 60 kilometers from Amerli and between Amerli and al-Azim. Iraqi Security Forces have been unable to advance to this strategic village, and ISIS places “high sensitivity” on this village, due on its role as a connector of medical aid between Salah ad Din, Amerli, and Harin. Al-Rahmi then stated, “The brigades’ political committees are coordinating efforts with the measures and operations of the army and the armed forces in crisis areas. They will offer everything in their capability.” (Fars News Agency)
  • Senior Hamas official Mohmoud al-Zahar praised Iran for its support to Palestinian resistance and said “Israel is unlikely to launch a new attack on Gaza in the near future; they would not dare wage another war any time soon as the resistance stands ready to defend Palestinians.” (Press TV)
  • Chairman of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq Ammar al-Hakim denounced the conference on Peace and Security in Iraq, held in Paris, for not giving Iran a seat at the table. Al-Hakim said “The so-called American-led coalition against ISIS terrorists will fail without Iran.” (Islamic Republic News Agency)
  • Head of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI) Ammar Hakim announced, “An international coalition against [the Islamic State] without Iran is a failed measure.” He rejected the combat for direct combat assistance and said that “what is needed today is arms and cooperation in security, intelligence, and new technology.” Hakim added that the $3 billion armaments which the Iraqi government has purchased from the United States have not entered Iraqi soil yet. (Islamic Republic News Agency)
  • An unnamed advisor to the Iraqi Embassy in Egypt reportedly denied the presence of Iranian military forces and said, “The Iraqi government has only requested military advisors from various countries.” (Alef)

Nuclear Talks

  • Iran’s Permanent Representative to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Board of Governors Reza Najafi announced that Iran and IAEA will hold a “technical meeting” in the near future to resolve points of contention regarding weaponization research. He refuted claims that Iran’s nuclear program has military dimensions, he also criticized Israel for alleged spying and said Iran has been fulfilling its commitment to the Joint Plan of Action deal with the P5+1. Najafi added:
    • “We continue to maintain full transparency regarding our nuclear program.”
    • “We will have a technical meeting soon about the last two operational measures to finalize this matter.”
    • “The recent report by the IAEA Director General which confirmed no violations in Iran’s nuclear energy program is clear evidence of Iran’s cooperation and fulfillment of its obligations.”
    • “In the past months, in accordance to the agreed framework, the Islamic Republic of Iran has fulfilled 18 acts of cooperation and has discredited certain intelligence agencies’ unsubstantiated claims…”
    • “An unmanned aircraft built and used by Israel [violated] Iran’s airspace and was located headed near the Natanz nuclear facility in an attempted spy mission… This act of aggression violates …international law.” (Mehr News Agency) (Islamic Republic News Agency)
  • Head of the Iran nuclear negotiations expert team and Foreign Ministry Political and International Affairs Director Hamid Baidinejad reiterated Tehran’s positions on immediate sanctions lifting, Arak reactor, and ballistic missiles and expressed hope to make progress ahead of the P5+1 meeting in New York. He rejected negotiating Iran’s ballistic missiles capability but noted that “we can clearly announce this as [part of an] agreement because we do not intend to use nuclear weapons and use missiles for nuclear arms use.”(Mehr News Agency)
  • Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met and spoke with the Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon and expressed his optimism about the nuclear negotiations. Zarif and Ban Ki-moon discussed the situation in the Middle East region and developments in Afghanistan and Iraq, and discussed the threats from the spread of terrorism:
    • Zarif: “Concerning the negotiations we are optimistic and we believe it is possible to reach an agreement.”
    • “Iran plays an effective role and is an important actor in the region and could play a constructive role in solving the region’s problems. Using Iran’s capacity more must be considered.” (Iran Student News Agency)
  • Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and European Union Foreign Affairs Chief Catherine Ashton will be present at the nuclear negotiations in New York. International and Legal Affairs Deputy to the Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi and Deputy Foreign Minister for European and American Affairs Majid Takht Ravanchi will be part of the Iranian negotiating team. Bilateral meetings took place in New York on Thursday September 18th in the morning and afternoon. (Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting)


  • Deputy Industry, Mining and Trade Minister in Trade Affairs Mojtaba Khosrotaj gave details on Iran-Russia financing and banking agreements in an interview with IRGC-affiliate Tasnim News Agency. The two have “agreed that expanding relations is necessary”: A framework for Iranian private companies to “enter Russia’s trade and civil projects; finalizing banking arrangements, agreement reached on letter of credit extension from “one of the Russian banks”; “financing requires bilateral guarantor funds coverage.” (Tasnim News Agency)
  • National Iranian Gas Company signed a $100 million agreement with a company from “a European Union member.” (Mehr News Agency)
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