Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi (10)


Iran Live Coverage: The Clerics Vs. Ahmadinejad

See also Wednesday's Iran Live Coverage: Tehran Continues to Push "Positive" Nuclear Talks

2032 GMT: Drone Watch. Pentagon officials have altered their story about the encounter between a Predator drone and an Iranian fighter jet (see 1848 GMT), over or near the Islamic Republic's airspace over the Persian Gulf.

"One of the US aircraft discharged a flare as a warning to the Iranian plane, which then broke off pursuit," spokesman George Little said.

Officials earlier suggested that two Iranian jets had "targeted" the Predator.

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Iran Live Coverage: Supreme Leader Declares Muslim Unity Against "Global Arrogance"

Maya Neyestani on the recent detention of 14 journalists by the regime

1811 GMT: Press Watch. Reformist newspapers have protested the arrests of their journalists since Saturday.

On its front page, Shargh published an empty space where Pouria Alami's column would usually have appeared and explained that "it will not be printed until further notice".

The newspaper Bahar wrote, "Our journalists deserve respect." It said that it is not possible at this point to comment on the charges of "spying and ties with foreign news organizations", but added that it is not clear how 14 journalists without any such backgrounds could suddenly have been detained, since all are fully aware of the red lines that cannot be crossed in the Islamic republic.

"Therefore, it doesn't seem that they could come close to such charges," the paper wrote.

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The Latest from Iran (16 July): We Are Here for Your Security

Maya Neyestani illustrates the warning of Iran's Police Chief against films and television showing people eating chicken, as it encourages the poor "to stab the rich"

1720 GMT: Persian Gulf Watch. A US military supply ship fired today at a small boat in the Persian Gulf after it came too close, apparently killing one person on board, American officials said.

The USNS Rappahannock, a fuel resupply ship, fired on what the officials called a "small, white pleasure craft" 10 miles from the Dubai port of Jebel Ali.

The Navy said in a statement, "In accordance with Navy force protection procedures, the sailors on the USNS Rappahannock...used a series of non-lethal, preplanned responses to warn the vessel before resorting to lethal force. The U.S. crew repeatedly attempted to warn the vessel's operators to turn away from their deliberate approach. When those efforts failed to deter the approaching vessel, the security team on the Rappahannock fired rounds from a .50-caliber machine gun."

Fars briefly had the item at the top of its homepage, but the entry has now disappeared.

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The Latest from Iran (1 May): The Supreme Leader Pins Economic Blame on Ahmadinejad

2025 GMT: Rafsanjani Watch. Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani has joined in the criticism of the Government over the economy, claiming it is increasing imports rather than supporting domestic production.

2015 GMT: Justice Watch. On Monday, we reported that Ali Akbar Heydarifar, a deputy to former Tehran Prosecutor General Saeed Mortazavi, was arrested over alleged involvement in the abuses at the Kahrizak detention centre in autumn 2009. Mortazavi, despite heated criticism from MPs and a file against him, has so far escaped prosecution and retains his post as a Presidential advisor.

A curious footnote from Radio Zamaneh:

Heydarifar, who reportedly signed the [Kahrizak] detainees’ transfer order, was involved in a recent altercation at a gas station in Esfahan.

He was reportedly trying to jump the line at the gas station when other customers complained. Media reports indicate that Heydarifard took out a gun and began shooting into the air. He was released after Security Forces called to scene checked his ID.

The Iran Prosecutor has announced that Heydarifar is also facing prosecution for the incident at the gas station.

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The Latest from Iran (11 December): Being Tough...To a Point

See also Iran Video: Authentic Footage of The Capture of the US Drone?
Iran Sunday Special: It's Another Caption Contest....
Iran Analysis: Will The European Union Ban Imports of Tehran's Oil?
The Latest from Iran (10 December): After the Drone Show

1950 GMT: Drone Watch. Tonight's rhetoric comes from Mohammad Javad Larijani, a senior official at the judiciary, who says the violation of Iran's airspace by the US RQ-170 drone will bring legal action. Claiming US intervention in the affairs of other countries is usually accompanied by terrorist measures, Larijani said, "We believe respecting the rights of other nations is a necessity. Today's world will no longer accept US and Western leadership. Interfering in [internal] affairs of other countries is a dark habit of the US and [other] Western countries, and we (Iran) oppose all forms of intervention in the affairs of Iran, Iraq, Bahrain, Syria and other countries."

Larijani took time to praise the Islamic Republic: “What has been done is important, but our abilities are higher than this and even if we had not captured the aircraft, our abilities in this area would have been still stunning.”

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The Latest from Iran (11 July): "Wasn't It You Who Raised Ahmadinejad to this Point?"

1150 GMT: Revolutionary Guards Do Politics. Ayatollah Alamolhoda, the Friday Prayer leader of Mashhad, tries to clarify the issue of whether the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps can intervene in political issues --- he explains that the late Ayatollah Khomeini never said the IRGC should not enter politics, only that they should not interfere in political parties and elections.

IRGC commander Hossein Hamedani offers another bit of logic to support the Revolutionary Guards' invovlement: all Iranian people are Basiji fighting for the country, the Revolutionary Guards are not separated from the Basij, thus the IRGC is a principlist movement beyond a narrow military role.

1040 GMT: Cartoon of the Day. Nikahang Kowsar depicts President Ahmadinejad's escape from interrogation by legislators, thanks to opposition from the Board of the Parliament and --- it is reported --- the Supreme Leader's office:

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The Latest from Iran (12 June): Two Years Ago Today....

In addition to our coverage, Iran News Now and Dissected News will be live-blogging any developments on the 2nd anniversary of the 2009 Presidential election.

2010 GMT: The Anniversary. A short video has been posted of security forces filmed by one of their own in Vali-e Asr Square in Tehran today:

1945 GMT: Currency Watch. The conservative Ayande News posts criticism of the Central Bank's 11% devaluation of the Iranian toman last week, claiming it is linked to problems with support payments for subsidy cuts but that is likely open to make imports more expensive and fuel inflation.

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The Latest from Iran (11 June): The Eve of the Anniversary

2120 GMT: This video, claiming to be footage of rooftop "Allahu Akbar (God is Great)" chants in Tehran tonight, is actually from two years ago (hat tip to reader Bozorg, who noted this in our Comments section):

2005 GMT: Opposition Watch. Mousavi advisor Ardeshir Amir Arjomand has hit back with a challenge to the regime, "You are saying that protests are the right of free peoples, except you don't think the same for Syria and Iran? Well we want and deserve the same thing! If you're telling the truth, don't crackdown today and let people peacefully express themselves, which is their right."

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Iran Video and Transcript: Revisiting The Opposition Case for an Illegitimate Election (21 June 2009)

During the Presidential campaign and election of 12 June 2009, Ali Akbar Mohtashamipour was the head of the Committee to Protect the Vote. On 21 June, two days after the Supreme Leader had reaffirmed at Friday Prayers that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had won the election, Mohtashamipour made a lengthy public statement in which he set out the case for a flawed ballot and set the conditions for a proper review.

Mohtashamipour's basic demand --- for an independent committee to enquire into the vote, as the Guardian Council, the Islamic Republic's body overseeing political matters, had been compromised by support of its members for President Ahmadinejad --- was quickly rejected. The Council conducted a limited recount of ballots and issued a report in July declaring that there was no irregularities in the election.

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The Latest from Iran (9 October): Threats and Two Responses

1725 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Several students at Amir Kabir University have received a total of 20 years of prison sentences.

Parvin Javadzadeh, arrested after an Ashura procession in December, has been released on $300,000 bail. 

Blogger Hossein Ronaghi-Maleki (Babak Khorammdin), sentenced this week to 15 years in prison, is reportedly in poor health because of a hunger strike. 

1720 GMT: Economy Warning. In advanced of planned subsidy cuts, Mehr warns that prices will rise in Aban (October/November) for seven energy items: gasoline, gasoil, white oil, blast-furnace gas, liquid gas, natural gas, and electricity.

On another front, Mohammad Atarodian, secretary general of employer's association, has said the official figure on unemployment of 14.6% is surely too low, because it counts people as "employed" if they work one hour per week.

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