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Entries in Yukiya Amano (23)


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 Live Coverage: The Latest Report on Tehran's Nuclear Programme

See also Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Threatened Journalists, Tehran Claims the South Pole, and the End of Olympic Wrestling
EA Video Analysis: Iran --- 7-Point Beginner's Guide to the Nuclear Talks
Thursday's Iran Live Coverage: A New --- and Genuine --- Offer in the Nuclear Talks?

1255 GMT:Nuclear Watch. Mehr News reports that the "largest nuclear medicine center" has opened in southeast Iran, as well as a Center for Digital Radiology in Yazd.

The new Digital Radiology Centre, in the Shahid Sadoughi Hospital, is named for Shahid Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan, the nuclear scientist killed in a Tehran bomb blast in January 2012, Mehr said.

The story of progress in technology and health care is a good-news tale amid the difficulties of Iran's health-care system in providing necessary treatment, medicines, and medical supplies.

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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 (7 December): Maintaining the Oil Squeeze

See also The Latest from Iran (6 December): "We're Still Winning"

2210 GMT: Oil Watch. An industry source claims Iranian oil exports will fall to a new low of 834,000 barrels per day in December.

This would be a sharp drop from Iran's October figure of 1.3 million barrels per day and a declinemore than 60% from last year's level of 2.2 million bpd.

Iran's recorded low this year was 860,000 barrels per day in the summer.

2200 GMT: Sanctions Watch. We return to our opening entry (see 0720 GMT) of the extension of US waivers from financial sanctions for those countries which reduce imports of Iranian oil.

The State Department announced further six-month extensions for nine countries tonight. As expected, waivers for renewed for India, South Korea, and Turkey before next Tueday's expiration. The US also acted now rather than waiting for the deadline later this month for China, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Taiwan.

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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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The Latest from Iran (10 October): Economic Fantasy and Reality

Iran Special: The US Nuclear "Experts" at ISIS --- When Propaganda Replaces Analysis
The Latest from Iran (9 October): Triple-Digit Inflation?

1815 GMT: Currency Watch. It looks like the Central Bank, trying to preserve foreign reserves, is restricting trade in the Iranian Rial. Reports indicate the Bank has declared that foreign currency accounts cannot be opened with Rials, but interest on the accounts will be paid in the local currency.

Meanwhile, an indication of the "real" price of gold, amidst the blackout on information. Khabar Online claims that advance sales of gold coins are trading at 14.44 million Rials (about $1200 at official rate).

That is an increase of about 11% on the "current" price, last posted on Tuesday.

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The Latest from Iran (4 October): Protest Resurfaces --- A Ripple or a Wave?

Footage from Wednesday's closure of the Tehran Bazaar and nearby protests

2051 GMT: Currency All-is-Well Alert. Mohammad Keshti-Aray, the head of the Gold-Sellers Union, has said that the Rial strengthened to 30000:1 to 31000:1 vs. the US dollar --- Tuesday's rate, the last posted on leading website, was 35500:1 --- and that the price for gold coin is down as well.

Keshti-Aray assured that dollar and gold rates would be "clarified" on Saturday,

2047 GMT: Loyalty Watch. Prominent conservative politician Habiballah Asgarouladi has said that "fitna" (sedition) and the "deviant current" do not accept national unity, which is possible only around the Supreme Leader.

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Iran Analysis: Assessing A Nuclear Warning from Tehran

UPDATE 1510 GMT: Many Western outlets have picked up on an extract from an interview of Abbasi Davani by Al Hayat in which the head of the Atomic Energy Organization that Iran intentionally passed misleading information to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

That declaration inevitably has led to assertions of Iran's deceit over its nuclear programme. However, it needs to be considered in conjunction with Abbasi Davani's asssertion that the IAEA has been penetrated by operatives of foreign intelligence services or has passed data to those agencies. In other words, the Iranian "deception" is a necessary defence to prevent espionage via the IAEA.

Fereydoun Abbasi DavaniTehran's approach has been over-interpreted by some leading analysts. For example, they assessed a weekend warning by the head of the Atomic Energy Organization --- ignoring his "carrot" about limiting uranium enrichment --- as the prospect that Iran would leave the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

It will not, at least not at least not in the foreseeable future. However, the Islamic Republic is also signalling that it will not concede to the US-European demand that Tehran offers a notable concession before high-level talks resume. And that in turn means that the political stalemate, the sanctions hampering Iran's economy, and the carrot-and-stick rhetoric will continue.

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The Latest from Iran (18 September): Nuclear Manoeuvres

See also Iran Snapshot: "Bad Hijab" Woman Beats Up Cleric
The Latest from Iran (17 September): An Intervention in Syria

1755 GMT: Currency Watch. Central Bank head Mahmoud Bahmani has announced a Bank portal to retrace moves in the official rate for foreign exchange, indicating there will be a halt to sales on the open market.

1750 GMT: All the President's Men (cont.). MP Mohammad Bayatiani has contested the claim that 164 MPs --- more than half the Majlis --- have supported controversial Presidential aide Saeed Mortazavi in his position as head of the re-formed Social Security Organization (see 1515 GMT) is "an obvious lie". He said the legislators had given thanks to the Organization, not Mortazavi.

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The Latest from Iran (14 September): The Regime Stages a Protest Over a Movie

Thursday's protest in front of the Swiss Embassy, which represents US interests, in Tehran

See also Iran Propaganda Feature: Fars News Makes Up Interview with "Bahrain Opposition Leader"
The Latest from Iran (13 September): Diversions and Selective Condemnations

1615 GMT: Trade Watch. Mehr reports that Iran and Pakistan have struck a barter deal --- Iranian oil for Pakistani food.

The agreement was signed in Lahore between representatives of Iranian and Pakistani Chambers of Commerce.

1555 GMT: Currency Watch. The website Pana claims that foreign exchange traders are using wireless devices at Istanbul Square in Tehran to sell dollars and that, despite threats to shut down "illegal" vendors, the Central Bank is not intervening.

Pana says the traders are getting up to 28000 Rials per dollar, higher than the 23880:1 to 25000:1 posted by Iranian media on Thursday.

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