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Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread The Most Underreported Story Of The Year!
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posted on 02/26/2004 12:04:33 AM PST
(Until they are Free, "We shall all be Iranians!")
Iranian Nobel winner laments polls, warns of violence
Wed Feb 25,12:10 PM ET Add Entertainment - AFP to My Yahoo!
BRUSSELS (AFP) - Iranian Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi criticized elections in her country that swept conservatives to power, and issued a veiled warning that opposition to the new regime could turn violent.
But speaking at the European Parliament, the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner called on the European Union (news - web sites) to remain engaged with Tehran, saying that dialogue was the only way forward.
The lawyer and rights activist noted that reformist candidates had been disqualified en masse from standing in Friday's election.
"By this means the rights of the Iranian citizens were ignored. In the name of Islam one cannot ignore and undermine citizens rights," she said.
Ebadi warned that the low turnout in the ballots reflected a yawning "gap" between the people and their government.
"If the new groups that come to power seek to ignore the wishes of the people then the gap will widen," she said.
"It is natural that a society in which the people become distant from the government will suffer tension.
"As an Iranian I wish that Iran remains a calm country. I hope the wishes of the people will be respected," she said.
But the Nobel laureate said that, if they were not, the new leadership "must know that one day it's possible that the patience of our youth (might) come to an end. I hope such a day will not come."
According to the final results, the number of new right-wing deputies in the 290-seat Iranian parliament stands at 156.
The Guardians Council, an unelected body run by hardliners, disallowed thousands of reformists from standing in the election, which saw the lowest turnout of any major ballot in the Islamic republic's 25-year history.
The EU, which has long promoted constructive engagement with Iran -- in stark contrast to the United States -- this week called the polls a "setback for democracy."
But Ebadi, speaking to the European Parliament's foreign affairs committee, urged the EU to pursue its negotiations.
"You must talk with the Iranian government. Embargoes and boycotts will never solve anything," she said, in an apparent reference to Washington's isolation of a regime it says is part of an "axis of evil."
"It is negotiations that resolve problems," she said, while adding: "These negotiations must have aims and not be mere talk."
The EU's talks with Iran, offering a trade agreement in exchange for human rights improvements, have been on hold since last June when a crisis over Iran's nuclear capacity saw a severe chill in Tehran's international ties.
European Parliament chief Pat Cox, speaking at a joint press conference with Ebadi, insisted that the EU should pursue its dialogue with Iran and above all emphasize the need to improve Tehran's human rights record.
"We have been disappointed at the recent parliamentary elections. They represent a serious democratic setback, and so a new challenge to the dialogue between the EU and Iran," he said.
Ebadi described democracy in her homeland as a flower, which she said bloomed when the reformist Mohammad Khatami (news - web sites) was elected as president in 1997.
"Democracy is like a beautiful flower: it must be constantly watered, it must be taken care of. Otherwise it dies," she said. http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/afp/20040225/en_afp/iran_vote_ebadi_040225171017
The Jews Of Iran - An Evening Of Persian Culture Featuring Literature And Music And Delicacies From Iran
New York, NY February 23, 2004 The American Sephardi Federation/Sephardic House in conjunction with Congregation Beth Simchat Torah will present an evening to celebrate the story of the Iranian-Jewish experience examining its art and history and how these elements became integrated into the culture of the United States. Light refreshments and a sampling of Iranian delicacies will add to the experience of the evening. This event will take place on Wednesday, March 3rd, 2004 at 6:00 pm at the Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York City.
Dr. Houman Sarshar, Director of Publications at the Center for Iranian Jewish Oral History, Los Angeles, and co-editor of three volumes of The Contemporary History of Iranian Jews, and a contributing author to the Encyclopedia Iranica, will present a slide presentation based on his most recent book, Esthers Children: A Portrait of Iranian Jews (2002). The second half of the evenings program will be a performance, Persian Rhapsodies by pianist and composer Tania Eshaghoff and her ensemble including Edward Smaldone, electric bass; Ali Bello, violin; Sky Steele, violin; Swiss Chriss, percussionist and Christopher Hoffman on the cello followed by a question and answer period.
"The most significant influences in both style and substance of Tania's music stems from the Persian tradition of the santur, with its elaborate rhythmic and melodic figuration, here translated into a distinctive pianistic technique. Her music also embraces the layered ornamentation of the Persian "avaz" tradition, a vocal style of great rhythmic subtley; her right hand "sings" as she plays this music, synthesizing the basic harmonies of the Persian tradition with a heterophonic melodic line, which appears to float with every performance. Her music is a virtual ethnography of Persian culture through the lens of her modern perspective." Anthony DeRitis
The cost of admission is $25.00 for adults and $20.00 for members of American Sephardi Federation/Sephardic House, Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, students and seniors. Reservations are required. For more information, please call the box office at (917) 606-8200 or visit www.cjh.org
About American Sephardi Federation
The American Sephardi Federation is a national Jewish organization dedicated to strengthening and unifying the American Sephardic community and promoting its spiritual, cultural and social traditions. ASF serves as the coordinating body and resource for all of the American Sephardi communities. Since its arrival to the Center for Jewish History, the archival holdings and library of ASF have been enriched with valuable records of personal and community history. For more information, call 212-294-8350 or visit www.sephardichouse.org
About the Center for Jewish History
The Center for Jewish History, (www.cjh.org), is the central resource for the cultural and historical legacy of the Jewish people. Located in the heart of Chelsea, NYC, it is within a ten-block radius of one of the largest populations of college and graduate students in the country. The Center serves the worldwide academic and general communities with combined holdings of approximately 100 million archival documents, a half million books, and tens of thousands of photographs, artifacts, paintings and textiles. The Center is comprised of a partnership of five major institutions of Jewish scholarship, history and art: American Jewish Historical Society, American Sephardi Federation, Leo Baeck Institute, Yeshiva University Museum and the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. In addition to its exhibit halls, classrooms, auditoriums and banquet facilities, the Center houses the Reading Room, the gateway to accessing the collections of the five partner organizations, and the Genealogy Institute, a research center where Jewish descendants can uncover information about their ancestors. The Center for Jewish History will interest all who wish to explore the richness of the Jewish past and the promise of the Jewish future. For more information on The Center for Jewish History, visit www.cjh.org or call (212) 294-8301. http://www.payvand.com/news/04/feb/1195.html
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Islamic Republic's NIAC relying heavily on Democrat to win office in 2004.
Guide to Democrat candidates, yet no mention of President Bush??
NIAC has been an ardent supporter of Iran's regime and continues to underhandedly deceive groups by advocating 'Civic duty' through it's President Trita Parisa. NIAC is an enemy to a free Iran. http://www.niacouncil.org/2004/guide.asp
DEMOCRATIC NOMINEES ADDRESS IRANIAN-AMERICAN ISSUES
Washington DC, February 26, 2004 - The National Iranian American Council has generated detailed responses and positions on policy issues that are of particular concern to the Iranian-American community.
Iran Reformers Demand Khatami Explain Sham Poll
February 26, 2004
TEHRAN -- Dozens of angry Iranian reformist parliamentarians have demanded President Mohammad Khatami appear before them to explain why he let last week's elections go ahead even though 2,500 of his supporters were barred from standing.
Many reformers and ordinary Iranians feel let down by Khatami, who promised freedom of speech and the rule of law, but failed to stand up to powerful hardliners once they blocked him.
Conservatives won control of parliament in Friday's polls, leaving Khatami increasingly isolated, heading a cabinet that achieved little even when it had a majority in the assembly.
"We are preparing to summon Khatami to parliament to explain his efforts for a fair election, what he did to ensure there was a free and fair election and why his government held an election which they believed was neither free nor fair," outgoing reformist deputy Reza Yousefian told Reuters on Thursday.
Pro-reform candidates only won 40 seats in the 290-seat assembly, compared to conservatives' 154, according to Interior Ministry official results released on Thursday. There are currently around 190 reformists in parliament.
Independents won 30 seats, five seats are reserved for religious minorities and 60 seats are to be recontested as candidates did not get the minimum 25 percent of votes. Polls in Bam were postponed due to December's earthquake.
The biggest reformist party, led by Khatami's brother, boycotted the elections saying they were rigged.
The soft-spoken president first criticised the barring of candidates, then, after talks with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said the polls should go ahead.
With some 100 pro-reform publications banned and state broadcasting firmly in the hardliners' grip, outgoing reformist MPs now cling to parliament as one of the last platforms they have to vent their frustration before they step down at the end of May.
Some 75 reformists deputies had so far signed the demand to summon Khatami to parliament, Yousefian said. But parliament speaker Mehdi Karroubi said he did not think the deputies would get the 105 signatures necessary to force Khatami to appear.
Ministers, appointed by the president, are not obliged to give regular reports to parliament. MPs have summoned other ministers for questioning in the past, but not Khatami himself.
A ban on the reformist newspaper Sharq, shut on the eve of polls, was lifted on Thursday after its publishers apologised for publishing a letter by some 100 MPs accusing Khamenei of presiding over a system which trampled on people's rights.
Khamenei controls almost all the key levers of power in Iran. http://www.iranvajahan.net/cgi-bin/news.pl?l=en&y=2004&m=02&d=26&a=13
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Hard-line member of Majlis tried to "beat up" woman Majlis member fatameh haghighatjoo after she resigned and denounced them as bad as the taliban.
He jumped up and ran towards her with his fists chanting that he will rip her apart before reformist members of majlis grabbed him.
Pierre Omidyar, 36, founder and chairman of eBay, an online auction site, and chairman of the Omidyar Foundation, and his wife, Pam, 36, chairman of HopeLab in Palo Alto, Calif., which develops tools using digital technology to help children with chronic illnesses, gave $40 million to the Omidyar Foundation, in Redwood City, Calif.
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Shally Zomorodi is a television news reporter that worked for an ABC affiliate in Texas. She is also Miss Orange County USA 2002. She hosted several Iranian news programs but several years ago moved to English programming and currently resides in California.
Summer 2003 - Sanaz Abdi $1,000.00 WINNER HOT Summer Glamour Girl Contest >>> See -- Occupation: Student -- Favorite clothing: H&M, my own design and clothes from sweden -- Favorite shoes: Everythings that looks good! -- My Hairstylist: Self -- Favorite makeup: Lancóme, Shiseido -- Hobbies: Swimming, running and working out -- My future goals: To be successful realator -- My role model: My dad -- What spiritually motivates me? God -- My ideal vacation spot: Thailand
Check out her favorite TV Show - Hannity and Colmes.
Sara Tabrizi - American's top Model TV Show
Favorite Movie: "The Making of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit" Favorite TV Shows: "Hannity & Colmes" and "Gilmore Girls" and basketball Favorite Music: Rap, R&B, 80s Favorite Food: Mom's famous spaghetti Other Activities: Volleyball Self-description: Articulate, stunning, sarcastic as hell. Life Motto: "What's next?"
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