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To: F14 Pilot
Iran's Khatami Loses Key Reformist Ally, Reports Say
Sat August 23, 2003 10:04 AM ET

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's reformist president, Mohammad Khatami, accepted the resignation Saturday of a key cabinet ally who quit in protest at mass arrests during pro-democracy demonstrations in June, media reported.
The loss of Higher Education Minister Mostafa Moin is a fresh blow to Khatami, whose efforts to create more open rule in the Islamic republic have been frustrated by religious hard-liners who control key levers of power such as the judiciary.

"Your resignation is accepted with deep regret and we hope your knowledge, experience, and competence may be of service in another field," state radio said, quoting a letter by Khatami.

Moin, who reformists said was a strong supporter of Khatami's reform agenda, asked to step down in July after the student-led pro-democracy protests. Judiciary officials said 4,000 people were arrested across the country in the unrest.

"From the outset I was opposed to such massive arrests," Moin was quoted as saying in the Hamshahri newspaper last week.

"My resignation should be viewed as an objection to the atmosphere in which the country is governed," he added.

Moin's bills to restructure his ministry had also been vetoed by the hard-line watchdog body, the Guardian Council. Moin complained that he did not have the authority in his post to push through change, the official IRNA news agency reported.

Moin had also asked to resign in 1999 after a clampdown on student protests in July of that year. But his request then was turned down by Khatami.

Jafar Meili-Monfared, another deputy in the Education Ministry has replaced Moin as acting minister.
11 posted on 08/23/2003 8:26:38 AM PDT by F14 Pilot (What Goes Around, Comes Around...!)
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To: All
Iran condemns Shanab's assasination

Tehran, Aug 23 - Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi here Saturday condemned the assassination of Abu Shanab, political activist of the Palestine Liberation Organizations Central Council (Hamas), on Thursday.

Abu Shanab was martyred by Israeli troops on Thursday.

Exacerbation of situation in Palestine has roots in the actions of the Israelis who are blamed for violation of cease-fire, he said.

Abu Shanab, a senior Hamas leader, attained martyrdom on Thursday in an air strike by Israeli troops in Gaza.

The assassination of a Palestinian political activist is a blatant sign of state-terrorism violating the principles of human rights as well as international norms, he said.

Asefi called on all international bodies as well as advocates of human rights to pay due attention to the critical situation of Palestinian and take the pressures exerted by Israeli on defenseless Palestinians as serious and to take action against inhumane actions of the Zionists.

*Comment: They still support the worst terrorist group of the world.
12 posted on 08/23/2003 8:28:33 AM PDT by F14 Pilot (What Goes Around, Comes Around...!)
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