2015 GMT: Labour Watch. Iran Labor Report offers a full summary of the recent pressure upon the Free Assembly of Iranian Workers with threat, arrests, and interrogations by Iranian security forces.
2010 GMT: Humour Failure. Update on the Bin Laden In Tehran, No, He's in Washington, DC story: looks like the US State Department doesn't realise that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was having a bit of a joke with his American interviewer.
NEW Iran Follow-Up: Ahmadinejad “Bin Laden Lives in Washington DC!”
NEW A Female Detainee in Iran: “Stripped by the Basiji”
Iran Video and Transcript: Ahmadinejad on Charlie Rose (3 May)
Iran Document: Mehdi Karroubi “The Movement Has Spread Everywhere”
Iran: Bin Laden Lives in Tehran Shocker!
The Latest from Iran (4 May): Beyond the “Main Event”
1930 GMT: Maryam Abbasinejad, the former secretary of the reformist Islamic Association at Tehran University, was arrested by security forces on 1 May. The detention followed protests by students against President Ahmadinejad’s speech on campus.
One week after their arrests, there is still no information on the condition of Alireza Hashemi, the secretary general of the Iranian Teachers Organization, Ali Akbar Baghbani, the secretary general of the Teachers Trade Union, and Mohamoud Beheshti Langarudi, the spokesman of the Teachers Trade Union.
1400 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Vahid Talai, a member of Mir Hossein Mousavi’s legal team, has been arrested.
Ali Tajernia, a former member of Parliament and leading member of the Islamic Iran Participation Front, has been imprisoned again. Tajernia was arrested shortly after the June 2009 election and subsequently sentenced to six years in prison plus 70 lashes . The sentence was reduced to a year after appeal.
1225 GMT: Media Moment of the Day. Did you think that news couldn't get more absurd after Fox News's pseudo-story "Bin Laden in Tehran", which we took apart yesterday?
Well, you hadn't counted on a prominent American anchorman taking the story so seriously that he would try and spring it on President Ahmadinejad. We've got the lurid tale, complete with Ahmadinejad's response, in a separate entry.
0825 GMT: Oil and the Revolutionary Guard. Thomas Erdbrink writes in The Washington Post:
Taking advantage of the very sanctions directed against it, Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps is assuming a leading role in developing the country's lucrative petroleum sector, Western oil executives and Iranian analysts say.
The Guard's engineering companies, replacing European oil firms that have largely abandoned Iran, have been rewarded with huge no-bid contracts.
0805 GMT: A Deal on Uranium? We wrote on Monday about President Ahmadinejad's New York adventure:
There is a chance that, behind the scenes, there may be some meaningful manoeuvring over the “third-party enrichment” proposal for Iran’s uranium stock, given the presence at an international gathering of brokers (Turkey, Brazil), the “5+1″ powers taking up the issue (Britain, France, China, Russia, Germany, and, most significantly, the US), and Iranian officials.
Well, well. Fars News is now reporting that, in a meeting with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has announced "agreement in principle" to Brazil mediating a deal on uranium enrichment.
But, and we ask the question for the 484th time, can the exchange of Tehran's current uranium stock for 20%-enriched fuel take place outside Iran?
0755 GMT: Curbing the Lawyers? Iranian lawyers have warned that new regulations threaten the independence of the Bar Association.
0745 GMT: Economy Watch. Rah-e-Sabz claims a "worker's crisis" in the cities of Tehran, Kerman, and Eslamshahr with the closure of plants, including a major tyre manufacturer and a ceramics factory. The site claims that some workers have not been paid for six or seven months.
0710 GMT: Corruption Watch. The head of Iran's armed forces, General Hossein Firouzabadi, has given this "reassurance": there are less than 1000 corrupt people in the Government and Iranian administration.
0700 GMT: Surprise of the Day --- Conservative Turns Reformist? Leading conservative member of Parliament Ali Motahari was speaking at Tehran University yesterday and, if Rah-e-Sabz is to be believed, was sounding distinctly un-conservative.
Motahari allegedly said that one has to distinguish the behaviour of the Government and even clerics from "Islam", and he asserted that the velayat-e-faqih (Supreme Leader) has to be elected and only be an observer of politics. ,
And more: Motahari supposedly argued that the regime should have given the people the right to protest last summer and state media should have broadcast the demonstrations, that dissident professors should be allowed to teach at universities, and that the judiciary is not independent.
Motahari did apparently tip his hat to the party line with the claim that, while Ahmadinejad played a role in the election uproar, Mousavi carries an even greater responsibility.
0630 GMT: The Female Detainee's Story. We have posted in a separate entry the account of an Iranian woman detained on 11 February, "Stripped by the Basiji".
0515 GMT: The Ahmadinejad sideshow in New York trundles on. Having "run circles around" around Charlie Rose of the US Public Broadcasting Service, as an EA reader aptly put it (note to Mr Rose: you might want to hire a researcher on Iran's internal situation before Mahmoud drops by on his next promotional tour), Ahmadinejad offers a shorter interview to Al Jazeera English.
Hopefully, the immediate media temperature over the media will drop, so we'll venture back to Tehran's internal matters and related issues. As Farnaz Sanei of Human Rights Watch dared to note during the furour over Ahmadinejad at the United Nations: "The focus on that potential danger [of Tehran's nuclear programme] should not obscure the fact that thousands of people are currently experiencing not just a threat of violence from the Iranian government, but the everyday dispensing of it."
UK Deportation Postponed
Britain's deportation of Bita Ghaedi, the Iranian woman who fled because of alleged domestic abuse and claimed she would be persecuted on return to Tehran, has been delayed by judicial action. Both the UK High Court and the European Court of Human Rights ordered a halt to the process.
Ghaedi had been put on a flight for Iran from London today. Now she will face an oral hearing on 21 July; her attorney is petitioning for bail.
Khatami: "The Plaintiffs and Defendants Should Change Place"
More on Mohammad Khatami's comments to former members of Parliament yesterday: the former President insisted that "protest is not provocation" and said, ""We should not raise any charges against the protesters. I am sure, if the judicial system correctly performs its functions, then the plaintiffs and defendants will change place."
Khatami noted, "The parties and groups are not allowed to operate and their activities are limited. They face the threat of closure and the newspapers are just closed. Which of these steps corresponds to the constitution?"
Top Reformist Arabsorkhi Released
Feizollah Arabsorkhi, a leading member of the reformist Mojahedin of Islamic Revolution, has been released on bail. Arabsorkhi, arrested in June, had been freed briefly for Iranian New Year but then returned to Evin Prison.
Cracking Down on the Students
Deutsche Welle posts a feature article on Iranian student protest and the attempt by authorities to suppress it through detentions and lengthy prison sentences.