Iran News Roundup September 20, 2010

 A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by Ali Alfoneh, Ahmad Majidyar and Michael Rubin.  To subscribe to this daily newsletter, e-mail ahmad.majidyar@aei.org.  

(E) = Article in English

Politics

  • Ahmadinejad discusses the position of the president:
    • "The parliament is no longer at the helm of the affairs..."
    • "The presidency is also the head of the tenth cabinet... The president is the highest authority in the country after the Leader. He is also the executioner of the Constitution."
  • Hamid Baghaei, Iran Cultural Heritage Organization director:
    • "If we look at what Mr. Ahmadinejad has done, we can say that Mr. Ahmadinejad is the Cyrus of the era. Mr. Ahmadinejad, with the positions he has taken towards the United States in the United Nations [General Assembly] is a way the Cyrus of the era."
  • Kayhan editor Hossein Shariatmadari slams Ahmadinejad's use of the Cylinder of Cyrus:
    • "Based upon which scientific and Islamic logic does the president of the Islamic Republic of Iran say that we will 'present the Cylinder of Cyrus' if the world asks us about Iranian management…? Are Islam’s teachings and values for world management deficient since His Excellency the president counter balances the deficiencies with the Cylinder of Cyrus…?"
  • Mehdi Karrubi in a letter to Rafsanjani demands that Assembly of Experts supervises the functions of the Leader, also criticizes "questionable acts of the Revolutionary Guards and the Basij."

Diplomacy

Military and Security

Economy
  • According to Donya-ye Eqtesad cash subsidies to citizens will be transferred to the bank accounts of those who have applied for it in a few days.
  • [E] Western sanctions on gasoline supplies to Iran will not harm the country, a member of the Iranian parliament said on Monday, stressing that Iran is now fully capable of meeting the country's domestic needs to gasoline.
  •  [E] Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani played down possible effects of the western sanctions on Iran, and described western pressures and boycotts as stimuli for Tehran's progress.

Trade

  • Ahmadinejad on sanctions’ impact on the Iranian economy:
    • "The United States government has not had economic relations with us for the past 31 years and is trying to force others not to cooperate with us…"
    • "We export $5 to 6 billion [to the European Union] on annual basis and they export $19 to us. $4-5 billion worth of this is machines and equipment which are important to us..."
    • "They want to sanction $5-6 billion. We say, shut it all…!"
    • "There are so many countries which would like to sell to us and they say: 'We don't care about the sanctions, but we can't give the products to Iran officially. We bypass and deliver.' We said, very well, you come to our customs, and can therefore not pay export taxes, but you should sell cheaper to us."
  • According to Reuters, the Islamic Republic has opened accounts in South Korean banks in order to circumvent the sanctions.
  • Donya-ye Eqtesad slams imports from China.
  • Feisal Mardasi, head of Association of Producers and Exporters of Persian carpets, condemns the United States' decision to prohibit Persian rugs, but adds that even during earlier sanctions, the U.S. market has never been "empty of Persian rugs."
  • [E] A senior official of Iran's largest auto-manufacturing company, Iran-Khodro (IKCO), said that Iran-Khodro Industrial Group is ready to inaugurate a car production plant in Senegal.
  • [E] Baku's Ambassador to Tehran underlined his country's willingness to boost economic exchanges with Iran, stating that the two countries aim to increase annual trade exchanges to $10 bln.

Religion, Society and Culture

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