Iran News Round Up June 27, 2013

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. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.

(E) = Article in English

Politics

  • President-elect Hassan Rouhani and former President Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani met earlier today. Rafsanjani stated, “I hope Mr. Rouhani’s measures will come to fruition soon.” Rouhani then said, “We have and always will benefit from Ayatollah Hasehmi’s good advice.”
  • Assembly of Experts member Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami threatened Israel’s destruction in the case of a military strike and also warned those who would opposes the Islamic Republic:
    • “All the conflicts of the World of Arrogance [the West] from the beginning of the Islamic revolution’s victory until now have been about religion. [They] do not want the Iranian nuclear energy issue to be resolved.”
    • “If the Zionist regime seeks to carry out the smallest attack against the Islamic Republic, we will destroy Tel Aviv and Haifa and do not fear anyone.”
    • “The eminent Supreme Leader has clearly said that we will help any Palestinian group which seeks to fight the Zionist regime.”
    • “Jurisprudence does not permit us to produce an atomic bomb.” 
    • "Those who take positions against Islamic societal leadership must await consequences and results of their positions from the nation.”
    • Velayat-e faqih is the nation’s indicator in the Islamic Republic system and no one, not even the President-elect, has a right to take positions against it.”
  • Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani stated, “Our thought regarding freedom and the press is that they must continuously cause social political growth in society… The limit of freedom is not related to security and the rest, rather it is related to creating a space for the growth of rights. Freedom is one of these rights and has a limit, which of course must not harm other values and rights.”
  • Interim Tehran Friday Prayer Leader and former Representative of the Supreme Leader to the IRGC Ayatollah Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani discussed the failures of American measures against the Islamic Republic:
    • “Global Arrogance, particularly America, will yield nothing else than hate and hatred of the war, massacres, and oppression that it has wrought in the world.”
    • “The truth of the Islamic Republic of Iran has caused the blasphemous and oppressive front to not leave this country alone…Today, the enemy, with heavy attacks against the oppressed, is only thinking about destroying their identities. Against the strength of this nation, America and its allies have attempted to commit any [manner of] crimes using any opportunities that they have found, so that [they can] take away Islam and the truth of the revolution from this nation.”
    • “The enemies feel that they can silence the light of righteousness and truth by killing and assassinating, but this is a false thinking because in this adventure the reputation and honor of [West] will be undermined.”
    • “Our way of life determines our way of death, because there is no honor in sleeping and dying in a bed, rather it is honorable to sacrifice one’s life in the scene of fighting the enemy.” 
  • Parliamentary Energy Commission member Mehdi Mousavinejad criticized the Oil Ministry for not hiring indigenous Bushehr workers for the National Gas Company.
  • The Ahmadinejad administration will reportedly privatize the Cultural Heritage Agency and transfer it to “Cultural Heritage Agency trade establishments.” 

Regional Developments

  • A panegyrist for Shi’a religious ceremonies and mourning, Karbalaei Hamid Alimi, was reportedly able to reach Syria “through a third country” and has been photographed fighting in Damascus. Iranian media claim that Alimi went to Syria in order to defend the Shi'a Sayyeda Zeinab shrine.
  • In a letter written in Arabic, Qom Seminary professor Ayatollah Jafar Sobhani vehemently condemned the killing of Egyptian Shi’a cleric Sheikh Hassan Shahate and three of his followers earlier this week “…at the hand of takfiri bands connected to the Great Satan America and the Zionist regime, which took place with the goal of expanding sedition and division in the Islamic community and also expanding chaos and destruction in Islamic societies…” He then criticized Sunni clerics for issuing fatwas that incite violence against Shi’as and warned that their silence will “…open the doors of wickedness among the [Islamic] community, which are impossible to close.” 

Diplomacy

  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesman Abbas Eraghchi responded to recent statements by the Saudi Foreign Minister regarding Iranian involvment in Syria: “Saudi Arabia, in addition to the visible military meddling in Bahrain, by violating all international laws and conventions, arms terrorists present in Syria with various light and heavy weaponry and has become a partner in the crimes of takfiri terrorists against the defenseless Syrian people.” 
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs Ali Akbar Salehi also reacted to Saudi Foreign Minister’s recent statements and said, “We want to have better relations with Saudi Arabia, but the Saudi Foreign Minister’s statements are full of contradictions.” He also urged Egyptian officials to be mindful of elements “seeking to create sedition,” following the killing of four Egyptian Shi’a by a Salafist mob.

Military and Security

  • Communications Minister Mohammad Hassan Nami announced that the reason for the reduction of internet speed before the elections, “which some called disruptions, were due to security strategies which were chosen in order to maintain the country’s calm during the staging of the elections.”
  • Senior Political Advisor to the Representative of the Supreme Leader in the IRGC BG 2C Yadollah Javani discussed election implications:
    • “In [2009], a political current claiming fraud in the elections, made bitter the people’s 85% participation in the elections and inflicted massive material and spiritual damages to the system and the country.”
    • “Foreign and domestic enemies have attempted to delegitimize the Iranian elections during the past four years and achieve their desires in creating separation between the people the system.... But with the transformation of the [June 14] elections to a political epic not only were these tricks disrupted, but it was the 'cheating claim' that fell apart and was disproved.”
    • “This was the art of the Islamic system and strategic management of the grand leader of the Islamic revolution, which, by transforming the scene of elections into a great opportunity for the system and the country, fulfilled several strategic goals simultaneously in the ray of elections with the creation of a political valor, and disproving “cheating claims” was one of these strategic goals that has yielded.”
    • “The system’s success in this matter was so prominent that it made foreign enemies and anti-revolutionary residents abroad confess and they discussed subjects that they would not even grudgingly point out before this.”
  • Law Enforcement Forces (LEF) Commander BG Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam announced that the LEF completely controls 75% of Iranian borders.
  • Head of the Basij Organization BG Mohammad Reza Naghdi considered economic issues as the greatest challenge for the country and said:
    • “The country is currently in a desirable condition in the political and security arenas, and from a cultural aspect we are at war.”
    • “Small investments will create jobs, high efficiency and production increases in society, and [we] must use hidden capacities on socio-economic issues and challenges can be alleviated with a little effort. Another solution is using the economic resistance strategy, which the eminent Supreme Leader has emphasized the implementation of this design, and one of the fundamentals of this design is using existing capacities in society.”
    • “This year, in addition to jihadi activities that have been implemented in previous years, such as reconstructing schools, homes and building mosques in [low-income] areas, Basijis must increase production and efficiency in villages, and in those regions measures regarding job creation should be undertaken.” 

Nuclear Issue

Economy

Photo of the Day

  • President-elect Hassan Rouhani meets with Head of the Expediency Council and former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.