Posts Tagged ‘ Iran ’

Saudi Grand Mufti: Iranians not Muslims

September 7, 2016
posted by

The Jewish Press    

"The Saudi Grand Mufti Abdul Aziz Al Sheikh has fanned the flames of a 1300-year dispute between Shiites and Sunnis when he announced on Tuesday that the Iranians are the descendants of the Zoroastrians and of fire worshippers. ... 'We must understand they are not Muslims, for they are the descendants of Majuws, and their enmity toward Muslims, especially the Sunnis, is very old,' the Saudi Grand Mufti said, and every learned Muslim understood the reference to the pilgrimage, which has been an area of contention between Shiites and Sunnis, and now between Iranians and Saudis, for almost as long as there has been an Islam. The Grand Mufti responded an [i]rate speech by Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who called on all Muslims to 'fundamentally reconsider the management of the two holy places and the issue of hajj.' In other words, an open call to millions of pilgrims arriving in Mecca for the mid-month festival, to rebel against the Saudi royal family that owns and manages the cities of Mecca and Madīnah." (09/07/16)

http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/saudi-grand-mufti-iranians-not-muslim-1300-year-war-continues-unhindered/2016/09/07/  

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Exclusive: US, others agreed to “secret” exemptions for Iran after nuclear deal

September 1, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"The United States and its negotiating partners agreed 'in secret' to allow Iran to evade some restrictions in last year's landmark nuclear agreement in order to meet the deadline for it to start getting relief from economic sanctions, according to a report reviewed by Reuters. The report is to be published on Thursday by the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security, said the think tank's president David Albright, a former U.N. weapons inspector and co-author of the report. It is based on information provided by several officials of governments involved in the negotiations, who Albright declined to identify. Reuters could not independently verify the report's assertions." (09/01/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-nuclear-exemptions-exclusive-idUSKCN1173LA  

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Iran: Regime arrests alleged nuclear spy

August 29, 2016
posted by

The Guardian The Guardian [UK]    

"Iran has arrested a 'spy' involved in the nuclear negotiations with world powers but has not yet formally charged the suspect, according to the judiciary's spokesman. Iranian media outlets reported on Sunday that a dual national identified as Abdolrasoul Dorri Esfahani, a senior accountant involved in banking-related aspects of the nuclear talks, had been arrested for alleged espionage." (08/29/16)

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/aug/29/iran-arrests-nuclear-spy-for-giving-secrets-to-west-say-reports  

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Iran: Russians stop using air base for strikes in Syria

August 23, 2016
posted by

USA Today USA Today    

"Russia will stop using a base in Iran for airstrikes targeting militants in Syria for the time being, Iran's foreign ministry said Monday. The move came after Iran's defense minister criticized Russia earlier in the day and said its announcement last week that it used the Hamadan air base for strikes on the Islamic State group was 'kind of show-off and ungentlemanly.'" (08/22/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/08/22/iran-says-russia-stop-using-its-air-base-strikes-syria/89091630/  

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Russian forces use Iran as base to bomb Syrian militants for first time

August 17, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"Russia used Iran as a base from which to launch air strikes against Syrian militants for the first time on Tuesday, widening its air campaign in Syria and deepening its involvement in the Middle East. In a move underscoring Moscow's increasingly close ties with Tehran, long-range Russian Tupolev-22M3 bombers and Sukhoi-34 fighter bombers used Iran's Hamadan air base to strike a range of targets in Syria. It was the first time Russia has used the territory of another nation, apart from Syria itself, to launch such strikes since the Kremlin launched a bombing campaign to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in September last year." (08/16/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-russia-iran-idUSKCN10R0PA?il=0  

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$400 million: The partial price of peace?

August 4, 2016
posted by

Thomas L Knapp -- photo by Avens O'Brien William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism
by Thomas L Knapp  

"When the US government sends $400 million in cash, stacked on pallets, to Iran on the same day the Iranian government releases four imprisoned Americans, it looks an awful lot like ransom. On the other hand, when the US government decides to keep $400 million sent to it by the Iranian government pursuant to an arms deal for 35 years without ever shipping the arms, it looks an awful lot like stealing. And when the US government reaches a settlement to finally pay back that money with interest, it looks an awful lot like justice." (08/03/16)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/7028  

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US “secretly shipped” $400 million it owed to Iran before release of four hostages

August 4, 2016
posted by

Russia Today [Russian state media]    

"A cargo plane with $400 million in foreign currencies was secretly sent to Iran on the same day four Americans were released from Tehran, according to a WSJ report citing EU and US officials. Washington insists the timing of the two events is coincidence. ... The major transfer was the first installment of a $1.7 billion settlement that the Obama administration reached with Iran to resolve a failed 1979 arms deal, WSJ said, adding that the settlement 'coincided' with the formal implementation of the unprecedented nuclear agreement reached between Tehran, Washington and other world powers in July 2015. The Iranians demanded the return of $400 million the government of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi deposited into a Pentagon trust fund 36 years ago to purchase US fighter jets, US officials told the Journal." (08/03/16)

https://www.rt.com/usa/354469-cash-iran-prisoners-released/  

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Document shows less limits on Iran nuke work

July 19, 2016
posted by

Daily Mail [UK]    

"Key restrictions on Iran's nuclear program imposed under an internationally negotiated deal will start to ease years before the 15-year accord expires, advancing Tehran's ability to build a bomb even before the end of the pact, according to a document obtained Monday by The Associated Press. The confidential document is the only text linked to last year's deal between Iran and six foreign powers that hasn't been made public .... although some of the constraints extend for 15 years, documents in the public domain are short on details of what happens with Iran's most proliferation-prone nuclear activity -- its uranium enrichment -- beyond the first 10 years of the agreement. The document obtained by the AP fills in the gap. It says that as of January 2027 -- 11 years after the deal was implemented -- Iran will start replacing its mainstay centrifuges with thousands of advanced machines." (07/18/16)

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/ap/article-3696201/Secret-document-lifts-Iran-nuke-constraints.html  

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Iran: Regime forces receive S-300 air defense missiles from Russia

July 18, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"Russia has delivered the missile part of S-300 surface-to-air defense system to Iran, Tasnim news agency reported on Monday, moving to finish the delivery of all divisions of the system to Tehran by the end of this year. 'The first shipment of missiles of S-300 missile system has recently entered Iran that shows Iran's determination to equip its air defense circle with this system,' Tasnim news agency, which is close to the Revolutionary Guards, reported." (07/18/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-russia-iran-missiles-idUSKCN0ZY0N7?il=0  

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US House votes to block civilian aircraft sales to Iran, threatening Boeing deal

July 11, 2016
posted by

Antiwar.com Antiwar.com    

"In a move that threatens to cost major US airplane manufacturer Boeing $25 billion, the House of Representatives has tacked an amendment on to their latest spending bill which would ban all civilian aircraft sales to Iran under any circumstances. ... This would not only block Boeing's $25 billion sales, but European maker Airbus, whose planes include some American-made parts and subsequently need a US OFAC license as well. In effect, this would forbid Iran from buying any planes for their effort to modernize a dangerously outdated civilian fleet." [editor's note: Boeing should start putting a clause in its aircraft sales contracts requiring airlines to check a blacklist and deny boarding of Boeing-made aircraft to congresscritters who support bills like this - TLK] (07/10/16)

http://news.antiwar.com/2016/07/10/house-votes-to-block-civilian-aircraft-sales-to-iran-threatening-boeing-deal/  

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Iran: Regime claims to thwart Islamic State attacks in Tehran, other cities

June 20, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"Iran has thwarted several planned bombings in Tehran and other cities, state news agency quoted the intelligence ministry as saying on Monday, in what it called a major plot by Sunni Muslim militants against the Shi'ite Islamic Republic. Iranian authorities say Islamic State militants have been hatching 'plots and conspiracies' against it from their de facto capital Raqqa in Syria. ... National Security Council secretary Ali Shamkhani was quoted by the semi-official ISNA news agency on Sunday as saying that Iranian security forces had arrested members of a network that was planning suicide bombings in Tehran during Ramadan." (06/20/16)

http://in.reuters.com/article/uk-iran-security-militants-idINKCN0Z60OL  

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Iran: Regime announces deal worth billions to buy up to 100 Boeing aircraft

June 15, 2016
posted by

The Guardian The Guardian [UK]    

"Iran has announced that it has reached a deal worth billions of dollars with Boeing for the purchase of as many as 100 airplanes, in what would be a historic business agreement with the US. Abbas Akhondi, the minister for roads and urban development, was quoted by local media as saying that Iran had already struck the deal which is aimed at renovating the country's ageing air fleet after years of sanctions. ... Barack Obama lifted the United States’ ban on selling aircraft parts to Iran almost exactly six months ago, though approval by the US government will still be required before the deal can take place." (06/15/16)

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jun/15/iran-boeing-deal-worth-billions-aircraft  

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India-Iran ties: Modi, Rouhani sign 12 agreements in Tehran

May 24, 2016
posted by

International Business Times    

"On the second day of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Iran, the two countries signed a dozen agreements, one of them a tripartite transit and transport deal involving Afghanistan. The deals, signed Monday, include infrastructure projects, energy partnerships, bilateral trade, cultural exchange and intelligence sharing, with a focus on terrorism. The most talked about contract was for the development of the Chabahar port in the Gulf of Oman on Iran’s southeastern coast. India will invest $500 million in the first phase of the project, which include two terminals and five multi-cargo berths, to be developed by India Ports Global Private Ltd. in partnership with Iran’s Ports and Maritime Organization." (05/24/16)

http://www.ibtimes.com/india-iran-ties-pm-modi-president-rouhani-sign-12-agreements-tehran-2373240  

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SCOTUS upholds use of stolen Iranian money to pay victims of terrorism

April 20, 2016
posted by

USA Today USA Today    

"The Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld actions taken by Congress and President Obama that held Iran financially responsible for acts of terrorism dating back to the 1983 bombing of a Marine Corps barracks in Beirut. The 6-2 ruling by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a victory for victims and their surviving family members, who had sought access to some $2 billion in assets controlled by Iran in a U.S. bank." (04/20/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/04/20/supreme-court-iran-terrorism-compensation-beirut-bombing/83275082/  

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Iran: Regime shows off Russian S-300 defense system on Army Day

April 17, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"Iran showed off parts of its new Russian S-300 missile defense system during National Army Day on Sunday, where President Hassan Rouhani said the country's armed forces were no threat to neighboring countries. ... Russia delivered the first part of the S-300 missile defense system to Iran last week, one of the most advanced systems of its kind that can engage multiple aircraft and ballistic missiles around 150 km (90 miles) away. Russia has said it canceled a contract to deliver S-300s to Iran in 2010 under pressure from the West. President Vladimir Putin lifted the ban in April 2015, after an interim agreement that paved the way for July's full nuclear deal with Iran that ended international sanctions." (04/17/16)

http://in.reuters.com/article/us-iran-army-rouhani-idINKCN0XE0G7  

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Arabian Sea: US-flagged pirates seize thousands of Iranian weapons, including grenade launchers

April 5, 2016
posted by

Fox News Fox News    

"The crew of a U.S. Navy ship stopped a massive Iranian arms shipment dead in its tracks, seizing thousands of weapons, AK-47 rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers that likely were headed to Yemen, the Pentagon announced Monday. The seizure, which unfolded in the Arabian Sea on March 28, was the third of its kind in recent weeks, military officials say. Iran has been supporting Houthi rebels [sic] in Yemen in their proxy war against a Saudi-led coalition [of invaders] backed by the United States. Like Iran, the Houthis are a Shia-led group." (04/04/16)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/04/04/us-seizes-thousands-iranian-weapons-including-grenade-launchers-in-arabian-sea.html  

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Air France won’t force air hostesses to wear veil

April 4, 2016
posted by

The Local [France]    

"Air France has moved to defuse a growing dispute by agreeing to make an exception for those air hostesses and female pilots who refuse to fly from Paris to Tehran because they don't want to wear the veil. France's national carrier has found a compromise agreement with unions after staff complained about having to wear the veil when on flights to Tehran, when they resume on April 17th. ... Air France suspended flights to Iran in 2008 but is resuming the service after international sanctions on the Islamic Republic over its nuclear programme were lifted." (04/04/16)

http://www.thelocal.fr/20160404/air-france-comprises-on-forcing-female-staff-to-wear-veil  

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The Iran deal bears some fruit

March 17, 2016
posted by

Doug Bandow Cato Institute
by Doug Bandow  

"Iranians have seemed to vindicate the Obama administration’s decision to try diplomacy after years of confrontation with the Islamic republic by electing moderate reformers. The most important objective with the nuclear agreement was to stop movement toward a nuclear weapon. There never was any reason to believe the GOP hawks who argued that the U.S. need only maintain sanctions while huffing and puffing a little more to make Tehran surrender to American dictates. When Washington rejected previous Iranian overtures Tehran added centrifuges. The deal was struck because it was a deal, which meant Iran’s government received benefits too. So far the agreement has pushed Tehran back from developing nuclear weapons and triggered a stronger fight for reform in Iran. That’s a much better start than many observers expected. The accord ended any potential nuclear weapons program for now. And so far Tehran is living up to the accord." (03/17/16)

http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/iran-deal-bears-some-fruit  

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Kings of the wild frontier

March 15, 2016
posted by

The Cobden Centre
by Tim Price  

"It has a young, highly educated population. 60% of its people are under the age of 35. It has a literacy rate of over 85%. Almost a quarter of a million new engineers graduate from its universities every year. And its stock market trades on a price / earnings multiple of just 5.5 times, with a dividend yield of 13%. Welcome to Iran. Is this one of the investment world's big opportunities, asks Merryn Somerset-Webb in her FT column this weekend? It very well might be. The question for foreign investors is whether those attractive valuations offer sufficient compensation for the clear geo-political and resource-related risks that come with investing today in the Middle East. Nobody knows the answer to that question." (03/15/16)

http://www.cobdencentre.org/2016/03/kings-of-the-wild-frontier/  

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Russia: Regime’s energy monopoly proposes gas deal with Iran

March 14, 2016
posted by

Fox News Fox News    

"Russian energy minister says Gazprom, Russia's state gas monopoly, has put forward proposals for the development of oil fields in Iran. Alexander Novak spoke at bilateral trade discussions in Tehran on Monday. He underscored Moscow's desire to strengthen trade relations with Iran and said the countries were considering opening a free-trade zone, according to reports from Russia's Tass news agency." (03/14/16)

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/03/14/russia-gazprom-proposes-gas-deal-with-iran.html  

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Iran election: Reformists win all 30 Tehran seats

February 29, 2016
posted by

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]    

"Allies of Iran's reformist President Hassan Rouhani have won a landslide victory in Tehran, in the first parliamentary vote since Iran signed a nuclear deal with world powers. With 90% of the votes counted, the pro-Rouhani List of Hope is set to take all 30 parliamentary seats in the capital. ... The parliamentary result in Tehran is significant because lawmakers from the capital usually determine the political direction of the house, analysts say. However, reformists look to have done less well in constituencies outside the capital." (02/28/16)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-35681250  

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Iran: Moderates to test hardliners’ grip on power in vote

February 25, 2016
posted by

Reuters Reuters    

"Friday's vote for Iran’s parliament and the Assembly of Experts, the body that will pick the next supreme leader, have assumed an importance well beyond the perennial battles between hardliners entrenched in power and reformists seeking to unseat them. These are the first elections since Tehran reached an accord with major powers to curb its nuclear program, leading to the removal of most of the punitive international sanctions that have strangled the economy over the past decade. The breakthrough took place under pragmatic President Hassan Rouhani, who sees it as a springboard for Iran to reintegrate into the international community and return to world markets. But hardline opponents are determined to prevent it leading to any liberalization of the Islamic system through the ballot box." (02/25/16)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-election-future-insight-idUSKCN0VY1CD  

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Russia: Iranian defense minister in Moscow to boost military ties

February 17, 2016
posted by

Military Times    

"Iran's defense minister is visiting Moscow for talks about closer military cooperation. Gen. Hossein Dehghan met Tuesday with President Vladimir Putin and also also with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Shoigu. ... Russia has a contract with Iran to deliver long-range S-300 air defense missiles, and Tehran also has expressed interest in other Russian weapons." (02/16/16)

http://www.militarytimes.com/story/military/2016/02/16/iranian-defense-minister-moscow-boost-military-ties/80462222/  

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Past as prologue? What North Korea teaches us about Iran’s nuclear program

February 14, 2016
posted by

Cato Institute Cato Institute
by A Trevor Thrall and Gregory D. Koblentz  

"Critics have consistently argued that Iran, like North Korea, will disregard the nuclear deal and develop nuclear weapons covertly with the help of funding generated by the easing of economic and financial sanctions. Is Cruz right? Does North Korea foreshadow the inevitable acquisition of nuclear weapons by Iran? Yes and no. On one level, Cruz is absolutely correct to connect the two; there are many similarities between the two situations that do, indeed, suggest that Iran will eventually develop a nuclear weapon. ... From a policy perspective, however, Cruz is wrong." (02/12/16)

http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/past-prologue-what-north-korea-teaches-us-about-irans-nuclear-program  

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Is Bernie Sanders really naive about Iran?

January 26, 2016
posted by

The Atlantic The Atlantic
by Peter Beinart  

"In the final days before she and Bernie Sanders face the voters of Iowa, Hillary Clinton is leveling the same attack she leveled against Barack Obama. She’s saying that on foreign policy, she's the only adult in the race. In their January 17 debate, Sanders declared that, 'What we've got to do is move as aggressively as we can to normalize relations with Iran. ... Can I tell you that we should open an embassy in Tehran tomorrow? No, I don't think we should. But I think the goal has got to be, as we’ve done with Cuba, to move in warm relations with a very powerful and important country in this world.' When the debate ended, Team Hillary pounced." (01/26/16)

www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2016/01/sanders-clinton-iran-debate/427065/  

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