2045 GMT: The Khamenei Road Trip. Fars and Mehr are reporting a big breakthrough for the Supreme Leader: his Friday meeting with clerics included Grand Ayatollah Safi Golpayegani.
No details are given.
1930 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Mahdieh Mohammadi, the wife of detained Iranian journalist Ahmad Zeidabadi, has said that the Ministry of Intelligence has denied her husband a furlough: “We have applied for a temporary leave at least six times. One was personally hand-delivered to Tehran’s Prosecutor, Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi, by my husband, but Mr. Dowlatabadi told him that he cannot do anything for him. It appears that rather than the judiciary it is the Ministry of Intelligence that has to allow my husband to get a temporary leave.”
Mohammadi said that, as Zeidabadi’s sentence includes a lifetime ban on writing, he has even refrained from sending letters to his wife.
Zeidabadi was arrested the day after the 2009 election and has been sentenced to six years in prison, five years exile to Gonabad Prison, and the lifetime ban on political activities and journalism.
Zeidabadi was one of the recipients of the 2010 Golden Pen of Freedom, presented by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, this month.
1800 GMT: Nuke Talks. More manoeuvring on possible discussions on uranium enrichment. The office of the European Union foreign policy representative, Catherine Ashton, has restated the formal invitation to Iran for talks with the 5+1 (US, UK, France, China, Russia, and Germany) in Vienna on 15-18 November.
Iranian officials, including Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, have welcomed resumed talks but have not confirmed a location and date, and there has been no official response to Ashton's original letter.
Interpretation? Quibbling over the agenda for the discussions and/or possibly internal tensions in Iran over a return to talks --- President Ahmadinejad clearly is pushing for this, supported by his Foreign Ministry, but the Supreme Leader's approval is far from clear.
1730 GMT: MediaFail Becomes MediaSuccess? In the category of Put Out a Bad Story Boldly Enough and People Will Run It, the Reuters' mis-report (see 0800 GMT and yesterday's updates) on the Supreme Leader's "success" in Qom is finding traction amongst other media.
Surprisingly, Tehran Bureau features the article as the lead item in its news round-up.
And tribute is paid in Iran as Mehr's English site runs an account that could be a word-for-word echo of the Reuters tribute:
During his visit to Qom, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei met with a number of ayatollahs and maraja taqlid (Shia clerics who are regarded as sources of emulation)including Naser Makarem Shirazi, Mousa Shobeiri Zanjani, and Jafar Sobhani late on Wednesday and was warmly received by them.
Ayatollah Khamenei also met with Grand Ayatollah Abdollah Javadi Amoli and Grand Ayatollah Hossein Nouri Hamedani on Tuesday night.
(OK, we don't really believe that Mehr took its lead from Reuters' piece. But the two reports do fit together very nicely indeed.)
1450 GMT: Is Press TV Erasing the Supreme Leader? We have been noting how Press TV has made almost no reference on its website to promoting Ayatollah Khamenei's meetings in Qom.
I thought this might be because of disappointment; however, I may have to re-think after the website's treatment of today's Friday Prayer by Hojetoleslam Kazem Seddiqi (see 1330 GMT).
Press TV posts eight paragraphs on Seddiqi's praise of "Ahmadinejad's Lebanon Visit, Miracle".
Number of words devoted to Seddiqi's praise of Khamenei in Qom: 0.
1335 GMT: Here's My Excuse. Ayatollah Bayat Zanjani sends in his apologies for not saying hello to the Supreme Leader: he is in Zanjan to attend his niece's wedding and to visit his mother.
1330 GMT: Your Friday Prayer Update. Hojetoleslam Kazem Seddiqi keeping it nice and simple today....
The Supreme Leader's trip to Qom --- super, fantastic, brilliant, just as good as Ayatollah Khomeini's return to Iran in 1979.
Ahmadinejad's visit to Lebanon --- super, fantastic, brilliant, a miracle of the Revolution.
You know that Imam Ali fellow? He thought the people of Qom were super, fantastic, brilliant in the 7th century.
Thanks and good-bye. Be careful on your journey home.
1320 GMT: The Khamenei Roadshow. Alongside our eyewitness analysis by Mr Azadi today, there are also contributions at insideIRAN from Arash Aramesh, "Khamenei Demands Loyalty from Seminaries", and Babak, "Khamenei Tries to Restore the State’s Credibility in Qom".
1255 GMT: Grounding the Airlines. Sometimes you find confirmation of reports in the most mundane but obvious places.
Want proof that restrictions of fuel for Iran Air's planes are having an effect? Look no further than the airline's website:
Due to ongoing fuel supply problems at London Heathrow it may be necessary to operate London to Tehran flights with an unscheduled refuelling stop at Hamburg or Vienna. In this event, ground time would be approximately 45 minutes and passengers will be asked to remain onboard. With the additional time for landing and take-off the total delay should not be more than 90 minutes, giving an approximate arrival time in Tehran of 0300hrs.
Talks to restore normal fuel supplies at Heathrow are continuing as a matter of priority and it is hoped that the situation will return to normal in the very near future. In the meantime, decisions regarding the possible re-routing will be taken on a flight-by-flight basis.
1250 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Rah-e-Sabz reports that security forces have raided the home of the daughter-in-law of detained labour activist Mansour Osanloo.
1215 GMT: Parliament v. Government. Yesterday we reported the prospect of a compromise over the Government's 5th Budget Plan.
Not so fast. MP Hossein Sobhani-Nia, who is close to the Ahmadinejad camp, says the Plan will not be debated in Parliament next week and that the arbitration commission has reached no final decision.
1210 GMT: Bazaar Watch. Rah-e-Sabz reports that the investigation of gold-seller protests over the Government's value-added tax proposals will be published in early November. The document is currently being discussed in a joint commission with the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
1130 GMT: How is Khamenei Doing? Hossein Allahkaram, a leader of the militant group Ansar-e Hezbollah, has said that the unprecedented reception by people for the Supreme Leader's visit proves that "fitna" (sedition) is dead. He added that "Islam minus clergy" is the system that Mir Hossein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi, and Mohammad Khatami are pursuing.
No boost, however, from Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez during his trip to Iran. There were rumours that he would be travelling to Qom, but Chavez said that this was not possible because of "unexpected programmes" in Tehran.
1100 GMT: Currency Watch. Fars headlines the reassurance from the Central Bank that Iran's foreign reserves now stand at more than $100 billion and are increasing.
A former official has claimed that, with the bank's intervention to stop the fall in the value of the Iranian toman, the reserves were now $80 billion.
1055 GMT: Brain Drain. Earlier this week we reported that Iran now leads the world in the emigration of highly-qualified citizens. Khabar Online provides statistics and details.
1050 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran reports that blogger and high school student Navid Mohebbi remains in solitary confinement a month after his latest arrest. No charges have been filed by officials of Mazandaran Province in northern Iran, and his family and lawyer have not been able to see him.
Mohebbi, a high school senior in the city of Amol, was also detained for several days in March.
1025 GMT: Trying to Prove Importance. Flutters of a counter-offensive from the Supreme Leader's office and Iranian media to dismiss the notion of disappointment. Khamenei.ir has posted an aerial photograph of Tuesday's reception by "thousands" in Qom, while Tabnak posts the news that the grandson of Iraq's Grand Ayatollah Sistani was amongst those who met Khamenei.
0815 GMT: Media Irony. In another development on the propaganda front, General Mohammad Reza Naqdi, the head of the Basij militia, has declared that 95% of world's media is in US hands, making propaganda against Iran.
(Guess he doesn't read Reuters.)
0800 GMT: Just like yesterday morning, the day starts slowly on the news front. And just like yesterday, that points to the relative disappointment for the Supreme Leader and his advisors of the ongoing mission in Qom. Still no sign that any senior clerics, apart from Ayatollah Makarem-Shirazi, are going to confer authority on Ayatollah Khamenei by paying respects at a meeting.
We round up the latest developments in an eyewitness analysis from our correspondent Mr Azadi.
Meanwhile, it must say something when the most effusive article about the Supreme Leader's trip comes not from Iranian state media but from Reuters' Paris correspondent, in yesterday's woefully inaccurate declaration of a Khamenei victory. This morning, IRIB's coverage is limited to a one-paragraph note about Khamenei's visit on Thursday night with the families of three martyrs.
Press TV is silent. More surprisingly, Fars --- which had been the lead cheerleader for the trip --- also has nothing to add this morning.