Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Abulfazal Salavati (6)


Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Political Prisoners and Public Executions (Arseh Sevom)

Two Iranian muggers, just before their public execution on Sunday in Tehran

Prison furloughs have been given to a number of prisoners of conscience even as Sakharov Prize winner Nasrin Sotoudeh was called back to prison after just three days. Public executions spark debate. Iranian State Television airs an “exposé” of CIA spying. Parliament debates restricting foreign travel for all women under 40 while the continuing house arrest of former presidential candidates is called into question. Finally the Iranian Coalition for Peace reaches out to President Obama.

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The Latest from Iran (15 May): Shutting Down the Journalists

See also The Latest from Iran (14 May): Will a Nuclear Drawing Unsettle the Talks?

1826 GMT: Parliament Watch. Outspoken conservative MP Ali Motahari has said that Gholam Ali Haddad Adel --- former Speaker of Parliament and member of the Supreme Leader's inner circle --- is not suitable to replace Ali Larijani as Speaker: "People like him believe that defending people's rights is against the nezam (system)."

1737 GMT: Nuclear Watch. Both the Iranian delegation and International Atomic Energy Agency officials have put out optimistic statements after two days of talks in Vienna.

"During these two days we discussed a number of options to take the agency verification process forward in a structured way," the IAEA's Hermann Nackaerts said. He added, "We had a good exchange of views and we will meet again on Monday," two days before Iranian officials meet the 5+1 Powers in Baghdad.

Iranian envoy Ali Asghar Soltanieh said: "We had fruitful discussions in a very conducive environment. We have made progress on this issue regarding preparing and negotiating the modality framework for resolving our outstanding issues."

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The Latest from Iran (10 January): "A Big Atomic Bomb Will Come Out"

1945 GMT: Elections Watch. Radio Zamaneh offers an overview of the MPs who have been blocked from running in Parliamentary elections in March. It notes that nine of them --- Ali Motahari, Hamidreza Katouzian, Alireza Mahjoub, Ali Abbaspour Tehrani, Fatemeh Ajorloo, Abbasali Noura, Peymon Forouzesh, Ghodratollah Alikhani and Dariush Ghanbari --- "have all been involved in strong criticism of the administration over the past year".

The Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mohammadreza Bahonar, said disqualifying government critics among the Principlists from running for office is “narrow-minded". However, Tehran Governor Morteza Tamaddon insisted that the disqualifications were carried out according to the law and in the “interests of the sacred Islamic Republic system".

The nominees have four days to appeal the decision, with the final decision to be made by the Guardian Council.

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The Latest from Iran (27 December): Election Watch

See also Iran Snap Analysis: How Many Reformists Will Participate in the Elections?
Iran Interview: Detained Mehdi Karroubi on "A Rigged and Forced Election Process"
The Latest from Iran (26 December): The (Dis)Unity of Elections

1758 GMT: Elections Watch. Prominent reformist Mostafa Tajzadeh, serving a six-year prison sentence, has posted an open letter declaring that he will boycott the forthcoming Parliamentary elections.

Tajzadeh, a former Deputy Minister of Interior, cited the need "to counter lies, corruption, and ineptitude" and "to prevent the establishment of an absolute dictatorship" as well "to control and eradicate poverty, unemployment, and crime". Among reasons not to participate, he mentioned the June 2009 "election coup" putting President Ahmadinejad back in office, the re-appointment of Ayatollah Jannati as head of the Guardian Council supervising the elections, the "illegal involvement of military and security forces", "the illegal house arrest" of Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, the suspension of reformist parties.

1755 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Ebrahim Yazdi, the 81-year-old former Foreign Minister, has been sentenced to eight years in prison.

Yazdi, the head of the Freedom Movement of Iran, was arrested briefly after the disputed June 2009 Presidential election and again in September 2010 for an "illegal prayer meeting".

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The Latest from Iran (26 November): Embezzlement

Graffiti of the Day. "The Greens Are Awake and Alert"

2125 GMT: Labour Front. ILNA reports on the protests of Tabriz workers and retirees in East Azerbaijan against changes in Iran's labour laws.

2037 GMT: Habil Darvish, the Chief Executive Officer of the Tehran Metro, has criticised the Government for paying only 20% of the allocated subsidies this year.

And Tehran Mayor Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf has struck a note of defiance: 400 new metro carriages will run until the end of year, even though the Government has ordered banks not to cooperate with the Metro.

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The Latest from Iran (28 February): The Regime's Escalation

2030 GMT: Not the Same. Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi has told journalists in Geneva, "There is absolutely no comparison between what is happening in the countries in the region and what has happened in Iran in a few incidents." He declared that Iran had only experienced a few "manipulated protests, while mass movements in the nations in the region are authentic, popular and people's movements".

Salehi said his government was "shocked" by Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi's resort to force against civilians and hoped that "the power is transferred through legal means to the people".

2025 GMT: The Arrests. Zahra Eshraghi, human rights activist and granddaughter of Ayatollah Khomeini, has written on her Facebook page, "If Mousavi and Karroubi and their followers are anti-revolutionary, the Imam Khomeini must be as well."

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