Entries in Hadi Ghaemi (4)
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)."
"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."
Iran Special: The Week in Civil Society, from Arresting Mountain Climbers to Strangling the Internet (Arseh Sevom)
Police display confiscated satellite dishes
Arseh Sevom, the non-government organisation promoting civil society in Iran, has started a weekly review of developments in the country --- this inaugural article covers 19-25 February. Read the full entry or jump to an individual item:
Hunger Strikes and Heresy: Prisoners of Conscience in Danger
Opposition Calls for Voters to Stay Home
The Call for Free and Fair Elections
Jammin’ and Jammin’ and Jammin’… Jam No More
Coming to Your TV: Iran’s Outrageous Confession Videos
Strangling the Internet
More Pressure on the Baha’i
Sixty Percent of Workers Under the Poverty Line
More Limitations on Who Can Stand for Office: If Brazil’s former president Lula da Silva were Iranian he Wouldn’t be Allowed to Run
Publishers Come Under Scrutiny: “Censorship reflects a society’s lack of confidence in itself”
How can we not start with a great big congratulations to Asghar Farhadi, the director of A Separation, for his historic Oscar win? Congratulations!
Arseh Sevom also notes that Sunday, February 26, marked Lawyer’s Day in Iran. With dozens arrested, persecuted, and imprisoned for their work defending the rights of others, being a lawyer in Iran can be hazardous. Arseh Sevom salutes those lawyers who have so bravely stood up for the rights of others. (Details of the harassment of lawyers can be found here.)
In the lead up to parliamentary elections in Iran, there is increased pressure on civil society. Mountain climbers have been arrested in Sanandaj, publishers are being scrutinized, and prisoners of conscience challenge their detention.
With less than a week left before the elections, the mood domestically and internationally is becoming more hawkish and militaristic. On election day, March 2nd, 85,000 members of the Basij militia will be dispatched to the streets. This is all being played out amidst worldwide speculations of an imminent attack on Iran.
1910 GMT: Where's Esfandiar? The mystery over the whereabout of President Ahmadinejad's right-hand man Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai continues....
Asr-e Iran asks why Rahim-Mashai has not been seen on Ahmadinejad's return on his overseas tour, either from the US or from Mauritania, where the President stopped on his way back from New York. In a new theory, Asr-e Iran doubts Rahim-Mashai even went to America, calling him a "ghost".
1710 GMT: Oil Watch. Allegations are now coming thick and fast about the Government's misuse of oil revenues (see 1415 GMT). Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli, the head of the Supreme Audit Court, has claimed that the Central Bank has not recovered billions of dollars in oil debts from India, that the Ministry of Energy owes $350 million to the private sector, that $2.9 billion in oil income has been spent on support payments for the subsidy cuts programme, and that oil revenues have been illegally transferred to foreign accounts of the National Iranian Oil Company.
Former Minister of Oil Masoud Mir Kazemi has reportedly submitted documents to the judiciary defending himself against accusations of involvement in the "disappearance" of $11.2 billion in oil revenue.