Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Mohammad Behzad (5)


The Latest from Iran (17 December): Seeking Influence on Syria

Iran Special Analysis: Breaking the Deadlock in the Nuclear Negotiations
The Latest from Iran (16 December): Is Tehran Ready for Concessions on Nuclear Programme?

1551 GMT: Foreign Affairs Watch (Turkish Front). NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen has rejected the declaration by the head of Iran's armed forces, Hassan Firouzabadi, that the placement of NATO's Patriot anti-missiles sysems on Turkey's border with Syria risks a world war.

"I completely denounce these (Iranian) allegations. We have made clear right from the outset that the deployment of Patriots is a purely defensive measure," Rasmussen told a news conference after talks with Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo. "We are there to defend and protect our ally Turkey. We have no offensive intentions whatsoever."

On Saturday, Firouzabadi said, "Each one of these Patriots is a black mark on the world map, and is meant to cause a world war. They are making plans for a world war, and this is very dangerous for the future of humanity and for the future of Europe itself."

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The Latest from Iran (27 July): "No Serious Plans to Combat the Sanctions"

See also The Latest from Iran (26 July): Mixed Signals on Syria

1703 GMT: Loyalty Watch. The Supreme Leader's representative Ali Saeedi said before the Tehran Friday Prayer, "Ayatollah Khamenei paves the way for [the return of the] Hidden Imam, and Sepah [Revolutionary Guards] will be his tool."

Meanwhile, Digarban rounds up Friday Prayers across the country with an analysis paralleling ours (see 1606 GMT): "Khamenei supporters ask people to endure sanctions, resist, and obey the Supreme Leader".

1700 GMT: CyberWatch. Reporters Without Borders has expressed concern over the detention of pro-Ahmadinejad bloggers, imprisoned for their criticism of the Iranian system.

Reza Moini, the head of RWB's Iran desk, made the comments in an interview with Radio Farda.

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The Latest from Iran (25 February): A Far-from-Simple Election

A man sweeps up discarded flyers for the Parliamentary campaign

See also Iran Snapshot: Expecting an Unhappy New Year in Tehran
Iran Analysis: Elections and Power --- This is More Than The Supreme Leader's Show
Iran Document & Snap Analysis: The IAEA Report on Tehran's Nuclear Programme
The Latest from Iran (24 February): Here a Deviant Current, There a Deviant Current

1735 GMT: Bank Fraud Watch. Voice of America has posted video of Amir Mansour Khosravi, the man at the centre of the $2.6 billion bank fraud, detailing bribes of 600 billion Toman (then about $500 million) to officials from Transport, Industry, & other Ministries, as well as banks.

1725 GMT: Elections Watch. Digarban notes conservative and principlist bloggers who are calling for an election boycott next Friday, including Ahmad Najmi from Qom, Mohammad Saleh Meftah of "Tribune of the Disenfranchised", and Hesameddin Motahari of "Ketab-e Esha".

The pro- Ahmadinejad "Armanshahr" (Utopia) and "Khat-khati" (Criss-cross Lines) blogs also doubt that the Parliamentary vote will have any value for people.

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The Latest from Iran (29 January): Future Election, Past Election, House Arrest

A Comment on the Currency Situation: President Ahmadinejad vs. the US Dollar

See also Iran Update: Guardian Council Approves New Islamic Penal Code
The Latest from Iran (28 January): Back to the Battle Within

2145 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. More than 140 writers, journalists, artists, and activists have issued a statement condemning the new wave of repression and arrests, noting in particular the detention of prominent literary translator Mohammad Soleimani Nia.

Soleimani Nia was seized on 10 January and taken to an unknown location.

2130 GMT: Execution Watch. International media have noticed, from Iranian outlets such as Fars, that the death sentence has been confirmed for Iranian-Canadian web designer Saeed Malekpour.

In fact, the news is old --- Malekpour was condemned at least 11 days ago by the Revolutionary Court in Tehran, which has confirmed the punishment for several bloggers and website operators in recent weeks.

Malekpour was arrested in October 2008 and charged with disseminating obscene materials via the Web.

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The Latest from Iran (28 June): Towards the Next Elections

1810 GMT: Khamenei's Balancing Act? More on the statement of the Supreme Leader's representative to the Revolutionary Guards, Mojtaba Zolnour (see 1435 GMT)....

While defending Ayatollah Khamenei's support of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in the 2009 election, Zolnour said that the "nezam" (system) was interrogating elements of the "deviant current".

Significantly, Zolnour indicated that the President's right-hand man Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai was the head of this deviant current and that the Guardian Council would reject him as a Presidential candidate in 2013.

1800 GMT: Ahmadinejad v. Khamenei? The pro-Ahmadinejad Absar News has warned the "aghazade-ha" (sons of influential persons) not to eliminate the President.

So at whom is Absar pointing? Digarban thinks it is Mojtaba Khamenei, the son of the Supreme Leader.

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