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Entries in Sattar Beheshti (24)


Iran Live Coverage: "Our Enemies Are Within Our Houses, Mosques, Seminaries, and Schools"

See also Wednesday's Iran Live Coverage: "600 Journalists Work With the Enemy"

General Hassan Firouzabadi1958 GMT:Political Prisoner Watch (Journalist Edition). The doors of Iran's prisons continue to revolve, with more journalists released and detained today.

Mohammad Mehdi Imami Naseri and Alireza Aghaeirad, the editor-in-chief and political editor of the reformist daily Maghreb, have been freed after 24 hours in detention.

Khosrow Kordpour, the head of the Kurdish Moukerian News Agency, and Ghasem Ahmadi, editor-in-chief of Roje monthly, have been arrested.

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Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Political Prisoners, Freedom of Expression, and Killer Smog (Arseh Sevom)

Hila Sedighi, threatened with imprisonment, recites her poetry

We have letters for you this week. The most heartbreaking comes from 21-year-old Zanyar Moradi, who begs the world to take notice as he and his cousin face imminent execution. Nobel Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi calls on UNICEF to visit children living in prison with incarcerated mothers. The children of former Presidential candidates Mehdi Karroubi and Mir Hossein Mousavi have called for an end to their house arrest. The Supreme Leader has been deluged with letters demanding free and fair elections.

Meanwhile, Tehran's polluted skies literally take your breath away, claiming more than 4000 lives over one year. Three Iranian writers are honoured with Hellman-Hammett grants for their commitment to free expression, and a group of Iranians in London form an organisation to encourage reading. Iran is said to be working on controls for social networking sites as it steps up its harassment of the families of journalists.

Finally, after her release from prison, Hengameh Shahidi, a former advisor to Mehdi Karroubi, has turned her attention to art.

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Iran Live Coverage: The Smog Shuts Down Tehran

Tehran skyline on Saturday

See also Iran Feature: The Economy in 2013
Saturday's Iran Live Coverage: Nuclear Talks to Resume?

1644 GMT: Foreign Affairs Watch (Turkish Front). The State news agency Anatolia reports that a cargo plane carrying 1.5 tons of gold, currently being held at an İstanbul airport, is en route to Iran.

Turkey has been paying for Iranian natural gas with an increase in gold exports of 11,000% in 2012.

The Airbus A-300, owned by a Turkish private company, landed at Atatürk Airport for refuelling and personnel reshuffle on 1 January. It reportedly flew from an African country, possibly Ghana, with a listed destination of Dubai.

The plane is currently locked, with its front door and cargo gate sealed and a special security team on guard. Anatolia said the plane will depart after the necessary documents are presented.

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Iran Feature: "Accept that the Regime is in Its Final Days" --- Dr Maleki's Letter to Supreme Leader 

Accept that the regime is in its final days. Do not trust in the information your allies provide you. Their only concern is their interests. At the end they will leave you on your own. Now, Iranians see you as responsible for all their problems. It was you who denied, and is still denying, the endless problems of the people. It was you who made incorrect decisions and let foreigners impose sanctions on Iranians and make their lives miserable. It was you who implemented strategies that brought the entire world against Iran. It was you who showed a green light to his men to take terrorist actions everywhere and shed the blood of Iranian intellectuals. You, as former President and current Supreme Leader, are responsible for mass killings of the 80s and martyrdoms of Hoda, Haleh, Neda, Saba, Sattar and many others.

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The Latest from Iran (14 December): An Advance in the Nuclear Talks? 

The 40th day memorial for blogger Sattar Beheshti, allegedly killed during interrogation in prison on 3 November

See also Iran Video Analysis: "Tehran Is Not Making a Mad Dash for the Bomb"
Thursday's The Latest from Iran (13 December): Nuclear Talks with the IAEA

1914 GMT: Assurance of the Day. Ayatollah Jannati, the head of the Guardian Council, has assured that "there is no possibility of another election intrigue" in the 2013 Presidential campaign, and those responsible in the 2009 disputed Presidential election "do not even have the illusion" that they can puruse this.

Jannati said those "guilty of sedition" will not be able to participate in the election.

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The Latest from Iran (13 December): Nuclear Talks with the IAEA

The European Parliament awards the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought in absentia to detained lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh and filmmaker Jafar Panahi, who is threatened with imprisonment

See also Iran Snap Analysis: Speculating about the Next President
The Latest from Iran (12 December): A 78-Year-Old Academic is Imprisoned for Writing the Supreme Leader

1602 GMT: A Death in Detention. Human rights activists claim participants in the 40th day memorial for blogger Sattar Beheshti, who died on 3 November under interrogation in Evin Prison, have been beaten, with several arrested.

Security officers reportedly raided the services at the Imam Mohamad Taghi Shrine in Robat Karim,, near Tehran.

Beheshti's mother was said to have sustained leg and knee injuries. Beheshti’s brother was detained for two hours.

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The Latest from Iran (4 December): Regime Concern over Political Prisoners?

State outlet Press TV on Revolutionary Guards' capture of a US dronem, announced today

See also Iran Analysis: A Debate Over Ahmadinejad's Political Future
Monday's The Latest from Iran (3 December): Medicine and Sanctions

2100 GMT: Book Corner. More than 100 Iranian writers, poets, and translators have called for an end to book censorship in an open letter.

The literary figures want the abolition of the requirement that writers obtain authorisation from the Culture Ministry before publishing:

Iran is one of the rare countries in the beginning of the 21st century where authors have to ask for a license from the state in order to publish their books, even though the requirement is not stated in the constitution....

In reality, this method amounts to hostage taking of freedom of expression, creativity, and the livelihood of writers by the government in order to impose its ideas on the authors.

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The Latest from Iran (1 December): Politics, Oil, and Propaganda

See also Iran Analysis: How to Misread Ahmadinejad's Position
The Latest from Iran (30 November): An Economy in Confusion

1935 GMT: Health Watch. A Ministry of Health official has said that the Central Bank has agreed to the Ministry's request for an earmarked $2 billion for imports of medicine to cope with domestic shortages.

Amid international sanctions that have reportedly limited drugs and medical supplies, the Ministry has been criticised for mismanagement and failure to allocate funds to deal with the worsening situation.

1715 GMT: Oil Watch. India's private refiner Essar Oil increased imports of Iranian oil about 30% in October.

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The Latest from Iran (29 November): Regional Interventions

See also Iran Feature: The Regime's Food Problems
Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Hunger Strikes, Hungry Families, and Ending Violence Against Women
The Latest from Iran (28 November): Supreme Leader Declares, "We're Winning"

2050 GMT: Nuclear Watch. The US has set a March deadline for Iran to fulfil the American vision of cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency, threatening referral of the matter to the United Nations Security Council.

Speaking to the IAEA board, American diplomat Robert Wood requested that IAEA Director-General Yukiya Amano declare in his next quarterly report on Iran, due in late February, whether Tehran has taken "any substantive steps" to address concerns.

Wood continued, "If by March Iran has not begun substantive cooperation with the IAEA, the United States will work with other board members to pursue appropriate board action, and would urge the board to consider reporting this lack of progress to the U.N. Security Council. Iran cannot be allowed to indefinitely ignore its obligations....Iran must act now, in substance."

Amano told the board that there had been no progress in his agency's year-long push to clarify concerns about suspected atom bomb research in Iran, but said he would continue his efforts.

The Director-General had expressed optimism in June, just before the last meeting between Iran and the 5+1 Powers on Tehran's uranium enrichment, over a resolution of the protocol for inspection and supervision of Iran's nuclear facilities. However, the hope receded amid the stalemate in Tehran's talks with the 5+1.

Iranian officials have said discussions will resume with the IAEA on 13 December.

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Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Hunger Strikes, Hungry Families, and Ending Violence Against Women (Arseh Sevom)

More than seven million students of all ages have dropped out of school due to economic hardships. Anasthesia is no longer readily available. Family, friends, and supporters call on the human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh to end her hunger strike. “Let the silent observers take over,” they urge. Families go without needed nutrients, even more workers lose their jobs, and factories shut down. Civil society organizations call for an end to violence against women in Iran, pointing out that much of the violence is part of society. Labour organizations call on the government to fully investigate the suspicious death of the blogger Sattar Beheshti.

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