The Corner

Iran News Round Up

(Thanks to Ali Alfoneh for his compilation)

Politics: March 2008 Parliamentary Elections

  • Former president Mohammad Khatami and former parliamentary speaker Mehdi Karrubi, consult with Rafsanjani to discuss the screening process for the March 2008 parliamentary elections in the Islamic Republic, which has barred many reformist candidates from running for the parliament.
    • Khatami, Karroubi and Rafsanjani meet the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, complaining against the barring of reformist parliamentary candidates.
    • Hossein Mar’ashi of the technocratic supporters of former president Rafsanjani calls upon the “grandees of the regime to intervene” against the screening of reformist candidates.
    • Spokesmen of the reformist camp protest against barring of more than 460 of their candidates for the parliamentary elections. 
    • The percentage of reformist candidates being banned is as high as 97 percent.
    • Emruz quotes a polling report from the reformist Nowruz showing considerable support for reformist parliamentary candidates.
  • The National Front (Jebhe-ye Melli) boycotts parliamentary elections in Iran.
  • Minister of Interior Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi claims most of the candidates barred from running for parliament are “Normal people, many of the fundamentalists.”
  • Ahmadinejad: “The incompetent should not have registered for parliamentary elections!”
  • In a veiled critique, Mohammad-Reza Aref, who is expected to withdraw from parliamentary elections, attacks candidacy of former Revolutionary Guards chief Mohsen Rezai.
  • Disqualified candidate Azar Mansouri writes in an open letter that she “demands justice from God.”
  • Prohibition of placards during parliamentary elections.

Politics: General

  • Central Committee of the Adwar-e Tahkim-e Vahdat, the largest and most important student organization in Iran, elected: Hassan Asadi-Zeid-Abadi, alumn of ‘Allameh University, Mehdi Amini, alumn of Shahid Raja’i University, Ali Jamali, alumn of Economic Affairs University, Jalal al-Din Hojjati, alumn of Water and Electricity Technology, Mohammad Sadeqi of the Medical University of Isfahan, Seyyed-Ali Siyasi-Rad, alumn of the Polytechnical University, Ameneh Shir-Afkan, alumn of the ‘Allameh University, Hadi Kahal-Zadeh, alumn the ‘Allameh University, Abdollah Mo’meni, alum of the ‘Allameh University.
  • Ahmad Qabel, religious reformer speaking in Mashhad: “Killing of an imprisoned student is shameful, not demands of international monitoring of parliamentary elections in Iran.” 

Nuclear Issue

Economy and Trade

Religion, Culture, and Society

  • Advar reports of large demonstrations in the campus area of the University of Tehran, who demanded ouster of the clerical dean of the university, ‘Amid Zanjani.
    • Approximately 2,000 students participating in the demonstrations were confronted by riot police. The students demanded “Writing of a charter for the student associations, improvement of welfare facilities of the campus area, improvement of the food, an end to summons of students into disciplinary committees.”
  • Iranian student association calls February 16 a day of solidarity with imprisoned Iranian student activists. 

Human Rights and Labor

  • Sa’id Habibi, after a 52 days “disappearance,” expelled from the philosophy course. Another leftist student activist, Ilnaz Jamshidi released on 1 billion rial bail.
  • Leftist student activists, Nasim Soltan-Beygi and Ali Salem, freed after 55 days of imprisonment.
  • Advar reports two leftist student activists, Farzad Hassanzadeh and Mohammad Zera’ati, arrested at the Ferdowsi University in Mashhad.
  • The Campaign for the Rights of Afghan Foreign Laborers in Iran publishes an open letter to the Iranian government protesting against poor conditions of life of Afghans in Iran, discrimination, etc…
  • Baluch school teacher, Yaser Sotvan faces death penalty because of alleged cooperation with the Jundallah terrorist group.
  • Akhbar-e Rooz reports of severe torture and punishments against imprisoned student activists.
  • Iranian student activists in the Swedish capital Stockholm stage a sit-in against imprisonment of political activists in Iran.
  • Amnesty International issues appeal under its urgent action procedure regarding three Bahá’ís who are imprisoned in Shiraz.
  • Article by an Iranian student lands Afghan journalist in prison. 
    • More, from Radio Farda.

Diplomacy

  • Iranian foreign ministry summons Norwegian envoy over human rights ‘meddling’
  • Iran offers to help Egypt at Gaza border.

Photo of the Day

  • Meeting between Ministers of Defense of Iran and Senegal.

Michael Rubin — Michael Rubin is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, senior lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Civil-Military Relations, and a senior editor of the Middle East ...

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