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Iranian Alert -- September 15, 2003 -- IRAN LIVE THREAD PING LIST
The Iranian Student Movement Up To The Minute Reports ^
Posted on 09/15/2003 12:10:14 AM PDT by DoctorZIn
The regime is working hard to keep the news about the protest movment in Iran from being reported.
From jamming satellite broadcasts, to prohibiting news reporters from covering any demonstrations to shutting down all cell phones and even hiring foreign security to control the population, the regime is doing everything in its power to keep the popular movement from expressing its demand for an end of the regime.
These efforts by the regime, while successful in the short term, do not resolve the fundamental reasons why this regime is crumbling from within.
Iran is a country ready for a regime change. If you follow this thread you will witness, I believe, the transformation of a nation. This daily thread provides a central place where those interested in the events in Iran can find the best news and commentary.
Please continue to join us here, post your news stories and comments to this thread.
Thanks for all the help.
TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: iran; iranianalert; protests; studentmovement; studentprotest
Discover all the news since the protests began on June 10th, go to:
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posted on 09/15/2003 12:10:14 AM PDT
To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
Join Us At Today's Iranian Alert Thread
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posted on 09/15/2003 12:11:03 AM PDT
Shots near British embassy staff compound in Iran
15 Sep 2003 04:59:39 GMT
TEHRAN, Sept 15 (Reuters) - Shots were fired opposite the main gate of the residential compound of the British Embassy in Iran, but nobody was hurt, a British diplomat said on Monday.
Britain protested "strongly" to Iran last week after the second of two drive-by shootings around the British embassy in Tehran in under a week.
The latest shooting took place on Sunday, British diplomat Andrew Greenstock told Reuters. "There were witnesses. It seems to be two men on a bike again," Greenstock said.
On September 9, a British diplomat in Tehran said three or four shots were fired at or near the embassy. Witnesses said they saw them coming from two men on a motorcycle.
There was a similar incident the previous week when gunshots also apparently fired from a passing motorcycle pierced windows in the embassy building that stands near a busy street.
Tensions have been rising between Tehran and London over Britain's arrest at Argentina's request of a former Iranian diplomat over the 1994 bombing of a Jewish centre in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people
Iran has said the case is politically motivated and called for the swift release of Hadi Soleimanpour, who was Iran's ambassador to Argentina at the time of the bombing. He was studying in Britain when arrested last month. http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/L15183893.htm
posted on 09/15/2003 12:13:36 AM PDT
Firm stance needed on Iran
Daily Yomiuri - Editorial
Sep 14, 2003
The resolution adopted by the International Atomic Energy Agency board concerning suspicions that Iran has a nuclear weapons program reflected international concerns about Tehran's ambitions.
The latest resolution urged Iran to disclose all details of its nuclear program by the end of October. The 35-member board had every reason to make such a request.
Iranian representatives, however, walked out of the meeting to express their displeasure over the resolution. They went so far as to say that their government might review its relations with the IAEA.
The Iranian attitude should be regarded as a challenge to the international community's due concerns.
For months, the international community has strongly urged Iran to clear up question marks over its nuclear program. However, it is suspected that Tehran is continuing to develop nuclear arms. It is all too easy to tell which party is at fault.
Friday's resolution came after the IAEA board urged Iran to help resolve the dispute in June. At that time, the IAEA put together a chairman's summary report outlining a proposed protocol granting the nuclear watchdog the right to conduct unannounced nuclear inspections in Iran.
Tehran showed a willingness to cooperate with the IAEA in this respect. Indeed, the Iranian government said that it would start talks aimed at signing the proposed protocol.
Revelations fan suspicions
However, the international community has since become even more suspicious of Tehran's nuclear ambitions following various revelations that could discredit its seemingly cooperative attitude.
IAEA inspections have detected traces of highly enriched, weapons-grade uranium at an Iranian nuclear facility. Tehran sought to convince the IAEA that its nuclear program was designed to serve civilian purposes, insisting that the facility in question was contaminated with enriched uranium from imported equipment.
Iran also had to take back its assertion that it had never conducted uranium conversion tests after the IAEA reported finding traces of evidence that such an experiment had been carried out at another nuclear facility in that nation. Tehran's unreported uranium conversion testing was an unmistakable violation of the IAEA nuclear inspection treaty.
These developments, combined with Iran's inadequate and inconsistent explanations of its nuclear program, gravely undermine international trust in that country.
Other nations have good reason to conclude that Iran's assertions cannot be taken on faith.
Nothing to hide?
If Tehran has only peaceful goals for its nuclear program, it has nothing to hide. The Iranian government should meet the deadline set by the IAEA board and disclose its nuclear program in its entirety.
This should be complemented by Iranian efforts to sign, ratify and implement the additional protocol as soon as possible. Tehran has demanded that the IAEA ensure the protocol would not violate Iranian sovereignty. However, Iran can hardly justify such demands, given that the protocol is in effect in more than 30 IAEA member nations, including Japan.
Iran also should take to heart that the IAEA members who submitted the latest resolution included Japan and European nations, all of which have maintained relatively favorable relations with that country. Tehran should not be mistaken about the international community's determination to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons.
Japan relies on Iran for about 10 percent of its oil imports. However, given the severity of the dispute over Iran's suspected nuclear program, the government should take a resolute attitude on this issue. http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_2342.shtml
posted on 09/15/2003 12:16:49 AM PDT
Russia Urges Iran to Abide by Nuclear Resolution
Associated Press | Monday, Sep. 15, 2003 | Steve Gutterman
Posted on 09/14/2003 9:15 PM PDT by RussianConservative
Russian officials urged Iran to abide by a UN nuclear agency resolution that set Oct. 31 as a deadline for Iran to prove it is not seeking to develop atomic weapons, saying Saturday that it is in Tehran's interest to show that its nuclear programs are purely peaceful.
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Kislyak also sought to ease tension between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency, saying the resolution passed by its board of governors Friday "is not an ultimatum. It is a serious and respectful call by the agency for cooperation between Iran and the IAEA," Interfax reported.... http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/982543/posts?page=1
posted on 09/15/2003 12:42:14 AM PDT
Iran Offers Oil Block To Indonesia's Pertamina: Official
Monday September 15, 2:06 PM
JAKARTA (Dow Jones)--Iran has offered an oil block to Indonesia's state-owned oil and gas company Pertamina (P.PTM), an Indonesian government official said Monday.
Oil and gas director-general at Indonesia's Mines and Energy Ministry, Iin Arifin Takhyan, told reporters the government received a letter on the offer from Iran.
"We will forward the letter to Pertamina soon," he added.
He didn't name the Iranian block offered.
Pertamina has been looking to explore for oil outside the country amid falling proven oil reserves in Indonesia, the only Southeast Asian member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or OPEC.
Last year, Pertamina was awarded Iraq's Western Desert block, which is estimated to contain 3 million barrels of crude oil. http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/030915/15/3e6cw.html
posted on 09/15/2003 12:56:38 AM PDT
To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; Tamsey; ...
Third Shooting Targets British Mission in Iran
Mon September 15, 2003 03:31 AM ET
By Christian Oliver
TEHRAN (Reuters) - A motorcycle passenger fired shots at the main gate of the residential compound of the British embassy in Iran, the third time the mission has been targeted this month, a British diplomat said Monday.
As with the previous incidents, nobody was hurt in the latest shooting which took place Sunday evening, British diplomat Andrew Greenstock told Reuters.
Tensions have been rising between Tehran and London over Britain's arrest at Argentina's request of a former Iranian diplomat in connection with the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people.
Britain protested "strongly" to Iran last week after the second of two drive-by shootings around the British embassy in central Tehran in under a week.
Witnesses at the sprawling, leafy Gholhak compound where British embassy staff and their families live in northern Tehran, said they heard two shots Sunday night.
"There were witnesses. It seems to be two men on a bike again," Greenstock said.
He said the shots were fired around 6:10 p.m. (1340 GMT). Iran's government was quick to condemn the shooting.
"These kind of moves are completely unacceptable," Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told Reuters. He said the government would ensure those responsible were brought to justice.
Witnesses said an increased number of guards had been posted at the Gholhak compound Monday.
The Gholhak compound is a high-walled haven in the north of Iran's crowded capital, filled with trees, gardens and diplomatic residences.
British diplomats said there have been two drive-by shootings at the embassy in central Tehran but this was the first time the residential compound had been targeted.
In the first incident on September 3 gunshots, also apparently fired from a passing motorcycle, pierced windows in the embassy building that stands near a busy street.
On September 9, witnesses said three or four shots were fired at or near the embassy, coming from two men on a motorcycle.
Iran was outraged by Britain's arrest in August of Hadi Soleimanpour, who was Iran's ambassador to Argentina at the time of the Buenos Aires bombing. The arrest followed a provisional extradition request from Argentina.
Iran insists the case is politically motivated and called for the swift release of Soleimanpour, who was studying in Britain. Soleimanpour was released on bail of 730,000 pounds ($1.2 million) Friday.
(Additional reporting by Parisa Hafezi) http://asia.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=worldNews&storyID=3442469
posted on 09/15/2003 3:13:49 AM PDT
by F14 Pilot
To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; piasa; Valin; nuconvert; Texas_Dawg; kattracks; RaceBannon; seamole; ..
Iran, Sept. 11 and the repercussions of regime change
To the countries of the former Eastern Bloc and parts of the so-called rogue states of the Middle East, a short rain of intervention came gently just after the Cold War. The principle of intervention based on redefining the collective security regime entered into force in four areas: gross violations of human rights, civil wars, terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.
The Balkan crises came to serve as a precedent in cases of human rights and civil wars, while the problems of the Middle East were mainly considered as falling into the unknown but highly controversial domains of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction. The outcome of Sept. 11 was only to accelerate the pace of intervention. The US desire for regime change in Afghanistan was already on the agenda. Mention could be made, for instance, of Congressman Bill Campbells call as early as Sept. 1, 2000 to convene a Loya Jirga and re-establish a representative government in Afghanistan. The US acted too late and Al-Qaeda carried out a pre-emptive attack. Shortly after the attack, I argued in the Iranian press that the United States would seek to decapitate the target regimes in three phases: first, Afghanistan; then the Middle East (Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon and Iran); and finally North Korea and other Asian countries (Kashmir, China and Indonesia).
I also argued that in the cases of Afghanistan and Iraq, the US would launch a decapitation attack, while in other cases it would pursue a process of decapitation. Accordingly, the use of force through Revolution in Military Affairs, based on a series of United Nations resolutions, toppled the Taleban and the Baath regime in Afghanistan and Iraq, respectively. By next March, Iraq will be stable enough to implement UN Resolution 1483 or its complementary resolution, which is being debated at the UN. A stable Iraq together with Qatar can replace Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates as the pillar of stability and center of US free trade in the Gulf region. This free trade might change the pattern of economic behavior in the Middle East. The United States and the United Kingdom as the authority under UN mandate can thus influence the course of events in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), an organization upon which the future of oil-producing countries like Saudi Arabia and Iran is highly dependent.
Yet the process of regime change in Saudi Arabia will not be an easy task. The US problem with Saudi Arabia is much deeper than one resolved by mere decapitation. If broached, the US dilemma would be how to change the attitude and mentality of the young neo-Wahhabi generation, and to change the Saudis educational system.
In the case of Iran, I would argue that the US is neither willing nor able to bring about prompt regime change, for several reasons. First, the US is preoccupied with Afghanistan, Iraq and Wahhabism in the Arab world. Its commitments, human costs and military expenditures could drain US desire for a major military operation in Iran. Second, US decision-makers do not have a common stance on Iran. They are highly divided on the issue. Third, despite great political rhetoric against each other, the US and Iran have frequently compromised in a give-and-take process.
The United States has traditionally been advised by the British to be prudent with the Iranians. And, Americans are convinced that resorting to hard power in the case of Iran would be costly and that soft power can better materialize a regime change in Iran, especially when that soft power is supported by domestic forces.
The United States has resigned itself to the use of threats in order to cause serious pain in Iran, and these ultimatums have been wired through diplomatic channels to Tehran in a diplomatic process of shock and awe. The final tick in US calculations is that the above-mentioned areas of intervention are not genuine problems with Iran.
On the surface, three of the four areas human rights, proliferation of nuclear weapons and terrorism are on the US agenda. None of them, however, is really a big deal for America. Underneath them lies the Palestinian-Israeli conflict; if it is resolved, the controversial disputes will wither away in a twinkle.
Seemingly, the case pending before the international community against Iran involves the failure on the part of Iran to comply with its International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) obligations as a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). To facilitate the process of transparency and inspection anytime and anywhere, the US and the EU want Iran to sign an additional protocol to the NPT. Geoffrey Kemps monograph at the Nixon Center elaborates on Irans nuclear options and recites two of my statements made at the Institute for Political and International Studies of Iran and the Majlis Research Center. The monograph goes on to say that my remarks, according to Kemps interpretation, signify that Iran has nuclear weapons.
Such is not the case. I made those statements at a time when India and Pakistan tested their nuclear weapons. I simply said that Iran should invoke Article 10 of the NPT and consider those tests as an extraordinary event against the supreme interest of Iran and therefore should render notice to step out of the NPT before the NPT and the CTBT monitoring systems and inspections regimes are in place. Iran failed to do so. That opportunity was lost and Iran has to pay the price. If you ask me as to whether or not Iran possesses the weapons, I would say no. If you ask me as to whether or not Iran will live up to its NPT commitments, I would say yes. If you ask me if Iran needs to nuclearize itself, I would say this is a must for Irans strategy of survival. A nuclear Iran must not be seen as a threat to its neighboring countries or to Israel. The weapons would serve as a minimum deterrence for self-defense in a world of uncertainty. It is necessary not only as a substitute for fossil energy but also for Irans social cohesion and prestige.
Six years ago, I warned that internally Iran is in a state of disarray. That argument still holds water. I would now argue that, only by becoming a nuclear weapons state, can Iran consolidate its social coherence. Iran needs both soft and hard power to regain its national identity and prestige. I strongly believe that if the underlying cause of conflict between Iran and the US the Palestinian-Israeli issue is resolved, those three outstanding issues would be irrelevant in the eyes of Americans. Sept. 11 militates against all forms of radicalism, including radicalism in Israel. The solution can hardly be located in arms control regimes such as the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and NPT. It must start within the ambit of Alternate Dispute Resolution.
Sept. 11 is driving Iran and Israel toward that resolution.
Abumohammad Asgarkhani is professor of international relations at the University of Tehran. This commentary is taken from bitterlemmons.org http://www.dailystar.com.lb/opinion/15_09_03_b.asp
posted on 09/15/2003 3:18:44 AM PDT
by F14 Pilot
To: F14 Pilot
HARD-LINE IRANIAN ACTIVIST RELEASED FROM JAIL.
Ansar-i Hizbullah leader Said Asqar was seen shopping with his wife in the vicinity of Dolatabad Avenue on 9 September, Fars News Agency reported on 11 September. He was released from Evin prison a few days earlier, an anonymous "informed source" told Fars. Asqar received a 15-year prison sentence for shooting reformist ideologue Said Hajjarian in March 2000, but he was out on bail when he played a role in suppressing the June 2003 student unrest (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 27 March 2000, 29 May 2000, and 23 June 2003). He subsequently turned himself in when he heard that Prosecutor-General Said Mortazavi was seeking his arrest (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 11 August 2003). BS
source: RFE/RL NEWSLINE Vol. 7, No. 174, Part III, 12 September 2003
Comment: It seems they are releasing some...
posted on 09/15/2003 5:05:28 AM PDT
Update on the above: RELEASE OF HARD-LINE ACTIVIST RENEWS FOCUS ON VIGILANTES.
Iranian journalists, student activists, and political dissidents are routinely jailed and held incommunicado for extended periods. While in prison, they are subject to physical and mental torture and forced to participate in televised confessions. Hard-line activists, however, seem to be able to come and go as they please, killing and beating their fellow citizens without penalty. Recent developments in the case of Said Asqar, a leader in the Ansar-i Hizbullah, shed some light on this situation.
Asqar was released from Evin prison and seen shopping with his wife in the vicinity of Dolatabad Avenue on 9 September, Fars News Agency reported on 11 September. Asqar received a 15-year prison sentence for shooting reformist ideologue Said Hajjarian in March 2000, but was out on bail when he played a role in suppressing the June 2003 unrest (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 27 March and 29 May 2000, and 23 June 2003). He subsequently turned himself in when he heard that Prosecutor-General Said Mortazavi wanted to have him arrested (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 11 August 2003).
The Tehran governor-general's assistant for political-security affairs, Ebrahim Rezai-Babadi, said in the 16 June "Iran" that Asqar was the main person behind the June 2003 violence at Allameh Tabatabai University's Tarasht Dormitory. Rezai-Babadi promised that Asqar and his cohorts would be dealt with severely.
But certain irregularities came to light after Asqar's trial got under way in mid-August. The indictment against him described Asqar as a man without a criminal record and disregarded his conviction in the Hajjarian case, "Aftab-i Yazd" reported on 18 August. Moreover, there was no follow-up on the complaints against him by the police intelligence unit or the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps.
Hard-line vigilantes such as the Ansar-i Hizbullah are sometimes referred to as plainclothesmen (lebas shakhsi-ha) or pressure groups, and they routinely justify their actions as being in defense of the theocratic system and Islam. Rezai-Babadi, however, described the plainclothesmen as a problem for the security forces -- "obstinate individuals who prevent the establishment of security with their presence."
Interior Ministry Undersecretary for Security and Discipline Ali-Asqar Ahmadi also criticized these individuals in an interview that appeared in the 28 July "Nasim-i Saba." "They think they are serving the system," he said of the plainclothesmen. In reality, Ahmadi said, "they play a role in the commotion and creation of insecurity. Then they interfere in the activities of the security and disciplinary forces." Therefore, Ahmadi asked, how can they be described as defenders of the system?
A different perspective on vigilantes and plainclothesmen came from Mohammad Ali Rahmani, who heads the police's Ideological and Political Organization. Rahmani said that people who interfere in security affairs on their own initiative and are not organized are vigilantes, and it is inaccurate to call them plainclothesmen, "Aftab-i Yazd" reported on 12 July. Rahmani went on to say that the police may sometimes call on the Basij for help, but then the Basij personnel would be under the police's command. Basij personnel who are not under police command and have not been organized do not have any right to interfere with police activities
Mohammad Zeynalzadeh, a member of the Tehran Province universities' Student Basij Central Council, offered yet another perspective on how the vigilantes are organized. He said in the 16 June "Entekhab" that there are four categories of such groups. The first group has revolutionary concerns and consists of people who act on their own initiative, but ignore Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The second group deceives students into opposing the regime's revolutionary wing. "The third group is made up of concerned and understanding Hizbullah individuals who cannot tolerate this situation."
Zeynalzadeh said the fourth group, which is the biggest one, consists of what he termed "official agents." He continued: "These are the people who can be present on the stage but not in uniforms. Many of them come from the Law Enforcement Security Division [hefazat-i niru-yi entezami] or the security divisions of other organizations. At any rate, all security, military, and law enforcement organs in our country see themselves as having responsibilities in this situation. It is natural for their security and intelligence forces to be present on this arena." (Bill Samii)
Source: RFE/RL Iran Report Vol. 6, No. 37, 15 September 2003
posted on 09/15/2003 5:12:44 AM PDT
As far as I know, He is a militant who was also responsible for terror of the Reformist spiritual leader in Tehran back in March 2000.
He is a terrorist...
EXECUTIVE BRANCH CONFRONTS EXISTENCE OF PARALLEL INTELLIGENCE ORGANIZATIONS.
President Hojatoleslam Mohammad Khatami's "housecleaning" of the Ministry of Intelligence and Security (MOIS) after the 1998 serial murders of dissidents is described as "one of the few genuine achievements to come out of his many confrontations with the conservative power structure" by Columbia University's Professor Gary Sick in the Autumn 2003 issue of "The Washington Quarterly" ( http://www.twq.com/03autumn/docs/03autumn_sick.pdf
). The investigation into the serial murders led to the arrest of ultraconservative MOIS officials, Sick writes, and to the replacement of personnel associated with former MOIS chief Ali-Akbar Fallahian-Khuzestani.
Even if the MOIS is no longer a hard-line stronghold, as Sick indicates, that doesn't mean that hard-liners have not created alternative structures to it. Khatami and his reformist associates have now turned their attention to these institutional competitors.
Deputy speaker of parliament Mohammad Reza Khatami, secretary of the reformist Islamic Iran Participation Party and also the president's brother, warned in a 9 July open letter to the country's executive that organizations working in parallel with the MOIS are interfering with judicial proceedings against people detained on political charges, IRNA reported. The parliamentarian wrote that such institutions are violating the rights of these individuals and referred to constitutional bans on torture and solitary confinement. A report on this letter that appeared in the 10 July "Yas-i No" daily added that many of those working in the parallel institutions are the same people who were purged from the MOIS after the serial murders investigation.
Isfahan parliamentary representative Rajab Ali Mazrui said in a 9 July interview with ISNA that the parallel intelligence organizations became active about two years ago. "They have especially tried to build a case against reformists," he said.
Describing the actual form of these institutions, Shahr-i Qods and Shahriar parliamentary representative Mohammad Ali Kuzegar said that they could be divided into two categories, ISNA reported on 9 July. "One group is made up of the cliques that are operating outside state institutions," he said, and "Another group is made up of parallel organizations which have been set up by other institutions."
More details were provided by parliamentarian Mohsen Mirdamadi in the 19 July "Yas-i No." He said that the people purged from the MOIS continued and expanded their activities elsewhere, and "the intelligence apparatus of one of these organs in Tehran has three times the number of personnel that the MOIS has throughout the country." Not only are the confinement and torture of students and national-religious activists examples of the parallel organs' existence, he said, but so is the case of Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi, who was killed while in detention.
President Khatami referred his brother's complaint about parallel intelligence organizations to the Committee for the Implementation and Supervision of the Constitution on 26 July, IRNA reported. Khatami established this organization in November 1997 to protect people's rights. The committee asked Mohammad Reza Khatami to provide it with evidence so it could pursue the complaint.
More recently, there have been complaints that the provincial supervisory offices being created by the Guardians Council for oversight of elections will have an intelligence function. Mohammad Sadeq Javadi-Hesar, the former managing director of the banned "Tus" daily, said that these offices would have more latitude in their activities than the MOIS, "Toseh" reported on 4 August. They would have the power to permanently monitor and survey individuals, whereas the MOIS only has this power for a limited time and in specific cases. Javadi-Hesar ascribed this development to the conservatives' loss of confidence in the MOIS. A commentary in the 12 August "Yas-i No" said the Guardians Council is being transformed into an intelligence organization, and is becoming a government that acts against the official government.
President Khatami said in a 22 August speech to MOIS executives that their organization must have the dominant role in intelligence activities, "Iran" reported on 23 August. He added that the establishment of any parallel intelligence organizations is unconstitutional and harmful to the state. An unattributed article about Khatami's speech in the 23 August "Toseh" warned that parallel intelligence organizations counteract and duplicate each other's efforts, and make oversight impossible. The article noted that the MOIS was created in the late 1980s to centralize intelligence activities in the country and to eliminate duplication.
Regardless of the executive branch's efforts, it must contend with the existence of many official security and intelligence institutions that operate autonomously. Writing in the 28 August issue of Beirut's "Daily Star," commentator Nawaf Obaid referred to the "newly created Foreign Intelligence Service" that reports directly to the Supreme Leader's Office. The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, different branches of the military, and the police all have their own intelligence and counterintelligence units. The Iranian executive branch will find it difficult, if not impossible, to reign them in and to centralize intelligence activities. (Bill Samii)
source:RFE/RL Iran Report Vol. 6, No. 37, 15 September 2003
posted on 09/15/2003 5:18:07 AM PDT
To: F14 Pilot
He is a terrorist...
Yes, he should be in jail together with Ali Fallahian and his group.
posted on 09/15/2003 5:27:00 AM PDT
lol, but they imprison others.
the "newly created Foreign Intelligence Service" that reports directly to the Supreme Leader's Office. The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, different branches of the military, and the police all have their own intelligence and counterintelligence units. The Iranian executive branch will find it difficult, if not impossible, to reign them in and to centralize intelligence activities.
Let us wait and see when info is leaked on the involvement of some of these groups in Najaf.
posted on 09/15/2003 5:33:13 AM PDT
To: AdmSmith; nuconvert; Valin; McGavin999; seamole; yonif; downer911; Pro-Bush
Iran looks to fight back
By Safa Haeri
PARIS - Officially, Iran has reacted guardedly to a resolution passed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) board of directors calling on it to sign up to the additional protocols to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and also to immediately stop all its uranium enriching programs - in effect, prove by October 31 that it is not building an atomic weapon.
If Iran does not cooperate and it is officially declared in non-compliance of the NPT, "Iran will forfeit it's right to share nuclear technology for peaceful purposes" and Russia will not be able to provide critical nuclear fuel for Iran's Bushehr nuclear plant, an IAEA official said. Although Russia is the main foreign contributor to Bushehr, China, Pakistan and some Western countries also provide dual-use technology and equipment and "that would no longer be legal under international law if Iran was not a country in good standing" under the NPT, he said.
On Sunday, Iranian Foreign Affairs Ministry senior spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told reporters, "The Islamic Republic is examining how to continue cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency," even though Iran's delegation had stormed out of a closed-door meeting with the IAEA in Vienna on Friday, accusing Washington of having new invasion plans after Iraq.
Following intense US pressure for action against Iran, the 35-nation board, effectively the United Nations' watchdog of nuclear activities, passed the resolution setting the deadline, which gives Iran a last chance to prove that it has been complying with the NPT.
"The Islamic Republic from the beginning had declared that the IAEA must act professionally and had warned the agency not to enter a political game," Asefi said, "regretting that the agency has been misused by certain Western states, particularly the US, and the process of debates and the behind-the-scene lobbies showed that Iran's warnings were right and that the IAEA has overlooked its professional work and has entered political bickering."
In the absence of any firm answer from Iran's leaders to the resolution, it has been the press, both reformist and conservative, that has taken up the matter. In angry editorials that reflect the views of officials from the two sides of the Iranian clerical leadership, editorialists and columnists expressed outrage and urged the authorities to expel the ambassadors of the three nations that initiated the resolution - Canada, Australia and Japan; to get out of the NPT and review Iran's relations with all the nations that approved the decision.
Many Iranian political analysts consider the resolution adopted on Friday without a vote - a procedure that IAEA spokeswoman Melissa Fleming described as "very unusual" - as a "humiliating defeat" for the Islamic Republic.
Iran's delegation at the board, led by Ali Akbar Salehi, its ambassador at the IAEA, walked out of the meeting, stating that "such an offensive text risks to kill an otherwise constructive process". "My country can possibly not accept a decision taken under political considerations," he told journalists in Vienna, accusing Western powers of the board of presenting Iran "biased, illegal and illegitimate" demands that could not be met in the time limit of October 31.
"The Iranian walkout was a protest against the resolution and against the procedure," an IAEA spokesman explained.
Salehi on Sunday also accused the US, Britain, France and Germany for their "extreme position" that, he said, was "nothing new".
What angered Salehi most was that not only had Russia, the country that is building Iran's first controversial nuclear-powered electrical plant, backed the resolution, but also some members of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), despite assurances offered a day before the Friday meeting by Malaysia's ambassador, Hoseyn Hanif, that the NAM would press for a compromise solution.
But Mohammad ElBradeh'i, the Egyptian director of the IAEA, expressed satisfaction, saying that the resolution sends a clear and strong message to Iran, and calling on it to cooperate with the IAEA "fully and immediately". "I reiterate that in the weeks ahead we have a lot to do in regard with Iran's nuclear projects, as I have to submit to the board [of directors] a precise report concerning the state of Iran's cooperation with the resolution," he stressed at the end of the meeting.
In a report submitted to the 35 directors, IAEA experts indicated that in one or two years from now, Iranian scientists would master the whole cycle of uranium enriching, a technology needed for developing an atomic bomb. In an August 26 report, the IAEA said that it had found traces of weapons-grade highly-enriched uranium at an enrichment facility at Natanz.
"They advance fast and it is in every one's interest to fix them a time limit. We must have a very precise idea of what's going on in Iran and what they are up to," an expert told Asia Times Online on condition of anonymity.
The US and Israel, joined by the EU, allege that Iran's civilian nuclear programs are a front for building atomic bombs aimed at destroying the Jewish state. But both Tehran and Moscow reject the accusation, insisting that all atomic projects are for civilian and peaceful purposes, mainly producing electricity.
Noting that urging Iran to sign "immediately and unconditionally" the additional protocols to the NPT is the "most humiliating clause" of a resolution that denies the majlis (parliament) and other decision-making organs of the nation the exercise of their sovereign rights. The hardline evening daily Keyhan said on Saturday that the least officials can do is to immediately expel the ambassadors of the three countries that formulated the resolution and not allow them to return until their countries presented full apologies to the Iranian people and government.
In an editorial signed by Hoseyn Sharia'atmadari, a specialist in interrogating political and intellectual dissidents appointed as editor of the paper by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the leader of the Islamic Republic, Keyhan assured that if the authorities failed to expel the three ambassadors, "the Muslim people of Iran would do it by closing down their embassies in Tehran".
"Yesterday's [Friday's] resolution of the board of directors of the IAEA leaves not doubt about the fact that the recent cacophonies over the nuclear activities of our nation are a well calculated plot aimed at toppling the Islamic Republic of Iran, using the NPT as a pressure tool," added the daily that reflects the views of Khamenei.
"In other words, the IAEA board of the directors negates the existence of the Islamic Republic, dealing with our Muslim nation as a surrogate state of the Middle Age type," Sharia'atmadari noted.
The article prompted the pro-reform press to express concern that the proposed threats against Ottawa, Tokyo and Canberra might provoke "some people" to in fact attack the three nation's embassies, "as happened to the British embassy, which was gun fired [on September 3] after a similar article in Keyhan," it was noted.
For its part, Jomhuri Eslami (Islamic Republic), a radical daily belonging to Khamenei, went even further, saying that Iran should follow the example of North Korea, which on December 31 expelled all IAEA inspectors and later withdrew from the NPT. "It should be accepted that the correct way was the one North Korea chose," the paper said, advising the authorities to continue the controversial atomic programs "unabated, whether Washington likes it or not".
While the state-run, leader-controlled Tehran Radio run a commentary along the same lines, Resalat, another conservative-controlled newspaper that speaks for the bazaar and clerical oligarchy, questioned the government decision to allow the IAEA's experts to inspect Iran's nuclear sites, "knowing well that some of them [experts] are spies".
Yas No, the official organ of the Islamic Iran Participation Front, a coalition of groups and parties that back embattled President Mohammad Khatami and also control parliament, advised the government to "revise" its relations with all the countries that supported the resolution.
"The [IAEA] resolution was adopted under heavy pressures applied by the United States on other countries, including the European Union, and this is exactly what makes it partial, discriminatory and unusual," said Morad Veisi of Yas No. "Not only will the Iranian people stand up to the discriminatory decisions of the IAEA, but they will also consider revising relations with all the nations that supported the resolution," he wrote.
However, Veisi indirectly blamed the ruling conservatives for Iran's unprecedented isolation on the international scene, adding, "One must also ask why the position of Iran has degraded from its peak of the golden period of after the second Khordad [May 26, 1997, marking the surprising landslide victory of Mohammad Khatami in presidential elections] to the present situation where even nations such as Japan, Canada and Australia side against the Islamic Republic?"
This is the view of most of Iran's reformists, who accuse the conservatives of having plunged the nation into a political abysses by making the wrong decisions at the wrong time and in the wrong places. In fact, the unprecedented gap between Tehran and the IAEA is so deep that Iran has lost all of its traditional friends and supporters, such as the European Union, Russia, Japan, and even in the NAM.
In a recent visit to Tehran, Xavier Solana, the Spanish minister on the European Union's Security and Foreign Affairs committee, warned Iran to accept the additional protocols or face "bad news".
"The resolution of the IAEA giving Iran six weeks to comply has placed the regime in a very difficult situation. In the 25 years of its life, the ruling Iranian ayatollahs have never been in such an awkward position on the international scene," observed Sadeq Saba, a senior commentator of the BBC on Iranian affairs.
In his view, Tehran has no other choice but to bow to the IAEA's demands and convince the international community about its nuclear programs, or adopt the North Korean model and cut all of its ties with the IAEA and accept the consequences.
"In case Iran's answers fail to convince, then the United Nations Security Council can impose economic sanctions against it. But contrary to North Korea, Iran's economy is tied to international exchanges, making it vulnerable to international embargoes," Saba concluded. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/EI16Ak01.html
I bet they are directly responsible for what happened in city of Najaf.
Iran remains fully committed to NPT: Iran vice president
Iran remains fully committed to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) despite its objections to the deadline given to Tehran to prove it is not developing atomic weapons, Iranian vice president and atomic energy agency chief Gholamreza Aghazadeh said.
"Iran is fully committed to its NPT responsibilities not only because of its contractual obligation but also because of its religious and ethical considerations," Aghazadeh told a general conference in Vienna of the UN nuclear watching, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
His comments set the record straight after Ali Akbar Salehi, Iran's ambassador to the IAEA, had said in a press interview that Iran was reconsidering its cooperation with the UN watchdog and might even withdraw from the NPT.
Aghazadeh said Iran was trying "to find ways and means that would salvage" the safeguards process of the NPT, a treaty which demands that signatory nations like Iran do not develop nuclear weapons.
"We are studying the (IAEA) resolution carefully and will respond to it officially in a few days," he said.
But he stressed: "Our cooperation with the agency within the framework of the comprehensive safeguards shall continue as before."
He also said Iran would continue negotiating on a protocol to allow IAEA inspectors to make wider, surprise inspections of suspect sites.
The United States charges that Iran is secretly developing nuclear weapons but the Islamic Republic denies this.
Aghazadeh condemned the United States for using a "heavy-handed approach" to force through the deadline in a resolution at a meeting last Friday of the IAEA's 35-nation board of governors.
He said the US tactics were part of an "agenda" that "is conceived in escalating tension and chaos to divert attention from serious issues that deal with partisan politics in the United States."
"This is unilateralism at its worst . . . extreme unilateralism imposed under a multilateralist cloak," Aghazadeh said.
He said the resolution, which gave Iran some six weeks, until October 31, to answer all the IAEA's questions about Tehran's nuclear program, was "engineered in such a manner as to guarantee its non- or half-implementation," implying that Iran was being condemned in advance.
IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei had opened the conference here of the agency's 136 member states by re-stating on Iran that "it is essential and urgent that all outstanding issues, particularly those involving high enriched uranium, be brought to closure as soon as possible."
He said he was looking forward "to enhancing the cooperation with Iran in the next few weeks."
US Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham said in his comments to the conference that the international community needs to look at how states like North Korea made progress on developing nuclear weapons even while belonging to the NPT.
North Korea has "sent a worrisome message to other would-be proliferants," Abraham said.
He said the message was that "a state can be a member of the NPT, enjoy its benefits and still put in place the assets it needs to break out of the Treaty and pronounce itself a nuclear weapon state."
The IAEA had in February referred the issue of North Korea, which claims to have manufactured nuclear bombs, to the UN Security Council.
North Korea kicked IAEA inspectors out of the country in December and then announced it was withdrawing from the NPT.
Abraham said the deadline set on Iran "makes clear that the North Korean precedent is unacceptable."
But Aghazadeh alluded to the United States when he said people should be asking "which country takes . . . the blame of providing Israel with nuclear weapons and thus overlooking its NPT obligations on non-proliferation."
posted on 09/15/2003 7:10:02 AM PDT
by Pan_Yans Wife
("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...
The Lebanon Scenario
Anonymous car bombs, political kidnappings, ethnic militias ... The Iraqi battleground has echoes of an earlier occupation.
By Rod Nordland
Sept. 22 issue Iraq under occupation is starting to look uncomfortably similar to Lebanon during its long civil war. The central government exists only in name, and neither police nor occupying troops are able to keep the peace.
IN RESPONSE, militias organized along ethnic and religious lines are taking up arms. Neighboring countries patronize friendly groups, or try to undermine rival ones. Arms smuggling over the borders is rife. Massive but anonymous car bombs assassinate opponents, terrorize civilians and intimidate foreigners. Even kidnapping has returned as a political tactic.
Its dangerous to overemphasize historical parallels, but also useful to examine similaritiesparticularly at a time when senior U.S. officials, like Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, are arguing that Iraqis should take a greater role in securing their country. Many leading Iraqis want the Americans to hand over power altogether; they just dont agree on who or what should replace them. Rival groups dont trust one another. And many want to form their own militiasnot in order to fight any other group, they insist, but for self-defense.
How U.S. forces deal with nascent militias may well determine the future of the country. Already the Coalition has worked with local fightersin part because they depend on Iraqis for intelligence. U.S. Special Forces cooperated closely with Kurdish peshmerga guerrillas, some 70,000 strong, during the invasion. And the Iraqi National Congress still maintains an armed force, composed mainly of glorified bodyguards, but which conducts its own operations and detentions. The Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), which was based in Iran before the war, has a 15,000-man militia called the Badr Brigades. The militiamen had been keeping a low profile until the assassination of SCIRIs leader, Ayatollah Mohamad Baqir al Hakim, in a massive car bombing at a sacred shrine in Najaf last month. Then it was the Badr Brigades that took over security at the shrine and in much of the city. That in turn prompted the U.S. commander in Najaf to issue a warning last week that militias there had to disband by Friday. He was only partially obeyed. How many ayatollahs can we sacrifice? says Adel Abdul Mehdi, political-bureau head of SCIRI. We have to ensure our own security.
More worrisome still are the armed followers of Moqtada al-Sadr, a radical young scion of a rival family of Shiite leaders who has built a small but vocal following in the Shiite slums of Baghdad. We have guns not to attack people but to protect ourselves and our leaders, al-Sadr said in a rare inter-view last Monday with a small group of journalists. Thats our right. Al-Sadrs followers vowed to defy the American order to disband. But when the deadline approached, al-Sadrs group avoided a confrontation by staying mostly out of sight.
If Iraq does become the new Lebanon, it could make the old one seem tame. Its an even uglier potential than you had in Lebanon because so much more is at stake, says Yahya Sadowski, an American political scientist who lived in Beirut through much of the war. You could run a nightmare scenario where Iraq is the Congo of the Middle East, militias all coming in from neighboring countries, he says. Yet precisely because so much is at stake, Sadowski doesnt think it will come to that. America cant afford to pack up and leave, as it did in Beirut after a suicide bomber hit the Marine barracks in 1983, killing 241 Americans.
Israels bloody history in Lebanon is even more instructive. The Israeli occupation of the south was initially welcomed by the disenfranchised Shiites. But with time, it was the Shiites under Hizbullah leadership who eventually drove them out (after 17 years). Uri Lubrani, who was Israels main policymaker on Lebanon, believes that the Shiite majority in Iraqrepresenting 60 percent of the populationcould give the country stability that Lebanon never had. But he also envisages their turning on their occupiers, and he suspects that Iran will try to foment that: Their strategy might be to have as many Americans sent back in body bags during the election period as possible. As Lubrani and the Israelis found in their own occupation, todays friends can easily become tomorrows enemies.
**With Babak Dehghanpisheh in Najaf, Colin Soloway in Baghdad and Dan Ephron in Jerusalem** http://www.msnbc.com/news/966400.asp
Iran: The Noose Starts to Tighten
September 15, 2003
The Washington Times
While the news media fixates on the financial and logistical challenges Washington faces in rebuilding Iraq, it has largely ignored the Bush administration's campaign to head off the development of nuclear weapons by a regime that is hardly any less brutal and dangerous than Saddam Hussein's late dictatorship: the mullahcracy next door in Iran.
On Friday, the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) announced that it has set an October 31 deadline for Tehran to disprove the mounting body of evidence that it is developing nuclear weapons.
The decision made by the IAEA (an institution previously known for its lethargic responses to nuclear weapons programs in Iraq and North Korea) represents a major diplomatic victory for the Bush administration. It is just the latest sign that the international community is coming to realize that it would be intolerable to permit Iran perhaps the world's foremost supporter of terrorist groups, including Hezbollah, Hamas and al Qaeda and a bitter enemy of any peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to obtain nuclear weapons.
"It is essential and urgent...that Iran remedy all failures identified by the agency and cooperate fully," the IAEA said in its resolution, which passed without any dissent. The agency urged Tehran to open all of its nuclear sites for inspections and provide a "full declaration" about its nuclear program. IAEA Director-General Mohammed ElBaradei declared that the deadline sent "a very powerful message to Iran to cooperate fully and immediately." The IAEA called on Iran to suspend all uranium enrichment activities after evidence of weapons-grade uranium production was found at Natanz ostensibly a civilian nuclear facility.
The IAEA move represents a potentially embarrassing setback for British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. Since 1997, London has pursued a policy of attempting to carry out a dialogue with Iranian "moderates" such as President Mohammed Khatami in an effort to get Tehran to moderate its behavior. But mounting evidence of Iran's continued repression of dissidents (including violent crackdowns by security forces against students and other pro-democracy forces in 1999 and earlier this summer) and the apparent murder of a Canadian photojournalist by security thugs this summer has made it clear this policy is a failure. When combined with Iran's support for terrorism and the possibility that it might become a nuclear weapons state in the next few years, it becomes increasingly obvious that more pressure against the regime is necessary.
In short, following an intense pressure campaign from Washington, the IAEA has set in motion a process that could turn Iran into an international pariah state in much the same way that Saddam's dictatorship next door came to be understood as an outlaw regime. As if that wasn't enough, Israel, which 22 years ago destroyed Iraq's Osirik nuclear facility, is warning that it may take similar action against Iran. Although the Israeli action in 1981 was widely condemned, most sober-minded people subsequently came to realize that it did the rest of the world a favor. If Tehran continues to stonewall the IAEA, don't expect too many tears to be shed in Washington if Israel manages to pull off another Osirik-type pre-emptive strike against Iran's nuclear facilities. http://www.washtimes.com/op-ed/20030914-113650-4539r.htm
To: Pan_Yans Wife; fat city; freedom44; Tamsey; Grampa Dave; PhiKapMom; McGavin999; Hinoki Cypress; ...
ElBaradei Wants Fast Closure on Iran Nuclear Plans
September 15, 2003
VIENNA -- After Iran's weekend warning it may quit the nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty, the head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog urged Tehran on Monday to come clean about its nuclear programme as soon as possible instead.
"It is essential and urgent that all outstanding issues -- particularly those involving highly-enriched uranium -- be brought to a closure as soon as possible," International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei told a conference of delegates from all 136 IAEA member states.
The IAEA's recent discovery of bomb-grade uranium in Iran fuelled fears Tehran has been secretly purifying uranium for use in an atomic weapon. Iran rejected this charge, blaming the IAEA finding on contaminated components purchased abroad.
ElBaradei, in the written text of his speech, was echoing an IAEA governing board resolution adopted on Friday, which gave Iran until October 31 to enable U.N. inspectors to verify that Tehran has no secret nuclear weapons programme or face possible U.N. Security Council sanctions.
Over the weekend, Iran indicated that it might go so far as to follow North Korea's lead and leave the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to protest the U.S.-backed resolution.
Tehran softened the tone of its rhetoric on Sunday, saying it would continue cooperating with the IAEA, though it would re-evaluate its relationship with the agency.
Washington, which labelled Iran a member of an axis of evil with North Korea and pre-war Iraq, lobbied hard to get Friday's toughly worded resolution passed.
The United States says Iran's nuclear programme is a front for developing an atomic bomb, a charge Iran vehemently denies. http://www.reuters.com/locales/newsArticle.jsp?type=topNews&locale=en_IN&storyID=3443006
Israeli-Indian Deal Threatens Iran's National Security
September 15, 2003
Relations between Israel and India are solid, having developed over 42 years through secret communications the last ten of which have seen an increase in military, intelligence and commercial cooperation up to USD 1.6 billion.
Consequently Sharons visit to New Delhi several days ago at an extremely critical time for the Middle East was not an ordinary one. The United States presence in the region under the pretext of the war on terror has created great problems for several countries in the region, notably Iran which the US considers part of the axis of evil.
Sharons visit to India, though seemingly intended to reaffirm the mutual struggle of the two countries against extremist Islam, is in reality a dangerous attempt to encircle the Middle East, flowing from American desires on the one hand and Jewish-Hindu sectarian interests against Islam and Muslims on the other. The official spokesman for Sharon confirmed this in a statement in the New Delhi. Our contact with India represents an affirmation of our trilateral relationship. We are linked to the US in the global war on terror. Thus he in effect classified Islam as the wellspring of terror and Muslims the principal elements of terrorism in the world.
Israeli-Indian dealings in the military field have already reached $2 billion and during this visit, a new $1billion military contract was concluded for the purchase of early radar warning systems and Falcon radar systems that enable India to place most of Pakistans airspace under close surveillance. This begs the question Is this deal a purely commercial act on the part of Israel or is it a cover for certain political and economic demands that serve the trilateral alliance? Close scrutiny of the development of Indian-Israeli relations confirms that political and military interests are at the forefront of the relationship and that Israel stands to gain strategic benefits as a result of providing India with advanced military technology. India doubtless has a stake in this deal namely keeping Pakistan under surveillance. India, previously regarded as part of the Soviet alliance, also wants to consolidate its relations with Washington. As for Israel it is planning something for the region that merely wants to abort any peace initiative that resolves the Arab-Israeli conflict.
Not too long ago Israel requested 100 long range F-16 planes from the US which Congress immediately agreed to even though Israel already possesses planes that are capable of reaching any Arab capital, so why the long-range planes? Quite simply this kind of plane is capable of taking off from any Israeli airbase and bombing Irans nuclear reactor as well as the Shehab missile manufacturing sites which are advanced Iranian missiles capable of reaching Eastern Europe (and by the same token, Israel). At the same time, the planes need a safe base on the return journey to refuel if needed and the closest would be an airbase in India.
In return for providing India with advanced military technology and further promises of providing them with an anti-missile defense system in a soon to be agreed $2.5billion deal, India must open its airbases for Israeli planes if needed in the near future. Now that Washington has occupied Iraq it wants to terminate Irans nuclear program using Israel so that it wont be blamed by its Western allies who reject the use of force in dealing with such sensitive matters. There is doubtless much danger in store for the Middle East; nevertheless we must take into consideration Irans reaction which will be quite different from Iraqs. Israels recklessness could result in a regional war that draws in a number of nations and could conceivably turn into a global confrontation. http://www4.arabnews.com/?page=7§ion=0&article=31992&d=15&m=9&y=2003
US Energy Secy Welcomes Iran's Decision On IAEA Ties
September 15, 2003
Dow Jones Newswires
The Associated Press
VIENNA -- U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham Monday welcomed Iran's decision to cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency.
"I hope it represents a decision to fully comply (with the IAEA)," he told reporters , describing Iran's statement as a "more hopeful comment" than previous threats out of Tehran.
Abraham is heading the U.S. delegation to the IAEA's general assembly.
Iran backed away Monday from following the example of North Korea and cutting the outside world off from scrutinizing its nuclear programs but accused the U.S. of strong-arming other nations into setting a deadline to bare its atomic secrets.
Over the past weeks, Iran had suggested that it might sever its ties with the IAEA if pressured too hard to increase access to its nuclear programs.
Those threats increased after the agency's board of governors passed a U.S.-backed resolution Friday setting an October deadline for Iran to essentially disprove it is running a covert nuclear weapons program. The board will decide in November on whether Iran has met that demand. If it rules Tehran in violation of the treaty banning the spread of nuclear weapons it will ask the U.N. Security Council to get involved.
Iranian Vice President Gholamreza Aghazadeh accused "partisan politics in the United States" of being behind the "heavy-handed" resolution accepted by the board but said his country remains "fully committed" to preventing the proliferation of nuclear arms.
"Our cooperation with the agency ... shall continue as before," Aghazadeh told the general assembly. He also said Iran would start "negotiations with the agency about the additional protocol," that would allow the IAEA thorough and unfettered inspections of all of its nuclear activities.
During negotiations that led to passage of a resolution setting the October deadline by the IAEA board, Iran had suggested that it would scrap plans to accept that protocol.
Although Aghazadeh's statements eased immediate concerns that Iran would cut ties with the IAEA and draw the curtain on its nuclear program, the Iranian vice president suggested his country still could turn more hardline. He said a final response was still being discussed by his government.
"We are studying the resolution carefully and will respond to it officially in a few days," he told delegates to the 135-nation conference.
The onus was on Iran to prove the world wrong, Abraham said because "all of the pattern of action and conduct we've seen is totally understandable," only in the context of a weapons program.
If unchecked, Iran could go the way of North Korea, which used its IAEA membership to gain access to nuclear technology only to quit the Nonproliferation Treaty and declare it was making atomic arms, he said.
"One cannot let that precedent be repeated," Abraham added.
The agency, the nuclear watchdog of the U.N., seeks to ensure compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which aims to ban the spread of nuclear weapons. It monitors the status of nuclear materials in dozens of countries and promotes the peaceful use of nuclear technology.
Other delegation heads and IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei urged Iran to heed the resolution and called on North Korea to scrap such its existing arms program.
"It is essential and urgent that all outstanding issues ... be brought to closure as soon as possible, to enable the agency to provide the required assurances," that Iran is not running a secret weapons program, said ElBaradei.
North Korea is now negotiating with the U.S. and four other countries on aid and other concessions it seeks in return for scrapping its nuclear weapons program.
ElBaradei said the country poses "a serious and immediate challenge to the nuclear nonproliferation regime." He said he hoped for an agreement at those talks that would allow his agency to play a key role in monitoring North Korea's nuclear activities.
Touching on North Korea and Iran , U.S. President George W. Bush, in a message to the conference read by Abraham, urged vigilance against states "trying to acquire nuclear weapons."
Abraham told delegates attempts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons were challenged by "a few rogue states seeking the capacity to attain weapons of mass destruction." Indirectly linking North Korea and Iran , he urged IAEA member states to "take firm and necessary action" to stop new nuclear weapons states from emerging.
Japan's government minister, Hiroyuki Hosoda, warned that his country would "not accept" North Korean attempts to build nuclear weapons and urged Iran to fulfill its obligations by the October deadline.
Italian Deputy Foreign Minister Roberto Antonione, speaking on behalf of the European Union, and its future members urged Iran "to take all the necessary steps to ensure full transparency of this nuclear program and restore the confidence of the international community."
He called on North Korea to "dismantle its nuclear weapons program ... and meet the requirements of the Non-Proliferation Treaty."
IAEA Web site: http://www.iaea.org/worldatom http://iranvajahan.net/cgi-bin/news.pl?l=en&y=2003&m=09&d=15&a=7
Iran Media Watch: Battling Britain
By MOJDEH SIONIT
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 15 (UPI) -- Iran's previously correct, if not cordial relations with Britain have taken a hammering in recent weeks following the detention of a former prominent Iranian diplomat there, and the Iranian media has reflected the outcry, and the increasing sense of isolation, that has followed from it.
The arrest in Britain of former Iranian ambassador to Argentina, Hadi Soleimanpour, in connection with the bombing nearly a decade ago of the Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aries caused a severe reaction from the Iranian government and media. On Aug. 25, the hard-line daily newspaper Ressalat wrote: "Britain should apologize to Iran because of the arrest."
The newspaper Ettelaat tried to put a more cautious, even optimistic face on the event, claiming in a commentary that a British Embassy official in Tehran had told foreign reporters that Soleimanpour's arrest had no political motivation and that it had been Argentina's order to arrest him.
Following the tumult over Soleimanpour's detention, Iran's official Islamic Republic News Agency reported Sept. 3 a shooting incident at the British Embassy in Tehran at midday local time. IRNA reported: "The incident came after Britain denied that there were any plans to recall its ambassador to Tehran following Iranian Ambassador Morteza Sarmadi returning for "consultations" over the arrest of former Iranian ambassador to Argentina Hadi Soleimanpour."
The shooting incident did not cause any injuries, but it has made Tehran-London relations more complicated. The Embassy was closed until further notice. But IRNA reported a British Foreign Office spokesman in London as saying this was just "temporarily." The spokesman also told IRNA that Britain's Ambassador to Tehran Richard Dalton had been in contact with the Iranian Foreign Ministry about the incident.
IRNA also cited British news reports that Iran was considering downgrading bilateral relations by expelling Dalton from Tehran.
Ettelaat on Sept. 3 reported that Iran's ambassador to Britain, Morteza Sarmadi, has returned to Tehran, but the paper claimed this had nothing to do with the deterioration of Anglo-Iranian relations. Ettelaat quoted an Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman as saying: "Mr. Sarmadi has returned to Iran for some consultations."
Meanwhile, Iranian officials continue to emphasize their good relations with the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Authority. IRNA on Sept. 1 quoted Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid-Reza Asefi as confirming that Iran had allowed IAEA inspectors to take samples at its nuclear sites.
Asefi described this act as a" major development" and announced that Iran's readiness to sign the additional protocol to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty was a sign of Iran's "good will," IRNA reported Sept. 1.
However, also on Sept. 1, the daily Keyhan, a voice for Iranian hardliners, called for Iran's withdrawal from NPT. Firing a warning shot at the relatively moderate pragmatists around President Mohammed Khatami, the paper argued, "Signing the additional protocol will bring obstacles for Iranian nuclear program aimed at applying nuclear energy for civilian purposes."
Keyhan also argued that signing the protocol would be detrimental to Iran's national interest. European Union Commissioner for Foreign Affairs Javier Solana "told the press conference in Tehran that there will be bad news for Iran if it refuses to sign the additional protocol; but, we say that signing the protocol will be the 'worst'", the paper said.
(Mojdeh Sionit is a former Iranian journalist now resident in the United States.) http://interestalert.com/brand/siteia.shtml?Story=st/sn/0915000aaaa070ea.upi&Sys=siteia&Fid=WORLDNEW&Type=News&Filter=World%20News
posted on 09/15/2003 1:53:35 PM PDT
by Pan_Yans Wife
("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
US judge orders Iran to pay $400 mil. to US victims of Jerusalem bombing
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
A federal judge has ruled that the Iranian government must pay more than $400 million in damages to eight Americans injured in a 1997 suicide bombing in Jerusalem.
U.S. District Judge Ricardo M. Urbina said the attack at a crowded pedestrian mall was carried out by members of the radical Islamic group Hamas, which the State Department says receives training, money and operational support from Iran.
Powerful explosive devices loaded with nails, screws, pieces of glass and chemical poisons killed five people and wounded nearly 200 in the Sept. 4, 1997, attack.
The lawsuit is among dozens filed against Iran under a 1996 U.S. law that allows Americans to sue nations listed by the United States as sponsoring terrorism for damages suffered in terrorist acts. The Iranian government has not
responded formally to any of the lawsuits.
In the Jerusalem bombing decision, issued Wednesday, Urbina awarded nearly $110 million in compensatory damages, which compensates for actual harm, to the eight Americans directly injured in the attack and $13.5 million in compensatory damages for emotional suffering to four family members of the victims. He also awarded $300 million in punitive damages to be shared among victims.
Victims of foreign terrorism who win judgments against Iran are allowed to collect a portion of their compensatory damages from the U.S. government. Frozen Iranian assets in the United States serve as collateral for the payments.
posted on 09/15/2003 2:34:03 PM PDT
by Pan_Yans Wife
("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
To: Pan_Yans Wife
This lawsuit will soon be followed by other lawsuits. This is probably the best way to go - hurt the terrorists with the maximum damage - i.e. in the wallet. Make a list of foreign assets owned by Rafsanjani and his cohort and use as collaterals.
posted on 09/15/2003 4:45:04 PM PDT
I firmly agree.
posted on 09/15/2003 4:46:11 PM PDT
by Pan_Yans Wife
("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
MP Ashamed of the Treatment of Political Prisoners in Iran
September 15, 2003
A large group of senior Iranian MPs and liberal activists have begun a hunger strike in Tehran in protest at what they describe as the harsh treatment of political prisoners in Iran.
The activists say their aim is to highlight the plight of these prisoners in Iranian jails.
In their statement, the Iranian MPs said they had decided to go on hunger strike to protest at the violation of the basic rights of political prisoners in Iran.
They said prisoners were being kept under harsh conditions without access to basic facilities and with very limited visiting rights for relatives.
The MPs include the leadership of Iran's largest pro-reform party, the Participation Front, and the chairman of parliament's national security committee.
Dozens of liberal figures and former ministers have also joined the protest.
This is the first time that a group of senior MPs have gone on hunger strike to support political prisoners. One deputy said he was ashamed of the treatment of political prisoners in Iranian jails.
They particularly want to highlight the plight of a prominent political activist, Abbas Abdi, who has been in detention for more than 10 months for publishing an opinion poll suggesting that the Iranian people favoured better relations with the United States.
International human rights groups believe that there are scores of political prisoners in Iran and they have repeatedly condemned the violation of the prisoners' rights in the country. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3110318.stm
Iran's Nuclear Debacle in Vienna
September 15, 2003
Teherans confidence in its ability to press on with its prohibited nuclear weapons program while blowing hot and cold on international threats was rudely shattered last week. Against all its expectations, a tough US-backed ultimatum was tabled and carried by the International Atomic Energy Agency board in Vienna on Friday, September 12. Iran was given until October 31 to stump up with full details of its nuclear activities program and prove it was not engaged in covert weapons production.
If this deadline is not met, the screw will turn again: The IAEA will pronounce Iran in violation of its obligations under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, opening the door to a UN Security Council debate in December 2003 or January 2004 and economic sanctions, one of which will prohibit UN members from purchasing oil and energy products from Iran, a measure that would bring havoc to Irans limping economy.
At one stroke, Irans options were reduced to two:
1- Knuckle under to the ultimatum and open up its nuclear site to full, unannounced international inspections. This would be tantamount to halting the enrichment of uranium for the manufacture of a bomb, a surrender the Islamic clerical regime might not survive.
2- Defy the ultimatum by emulating North Koreas tactics of confronting every international threat with an escalation, such as testing missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads or staging nuclear tests. The price for this defiance will be steep, punishing sanctions that will further cripple an economy already hobbled by roaring unemployment that in some places reaches 50 percent.
DEBKAfiles Persian Gulf sources reveal that Tehran was stunned when Moscow and New Delhi lined up behind the tough US measure at the IAEA board meeting. Multibillion deals for the construction of Irans nuclear reactor at Bushehr and other technology transfers net Russia invaluable revenues, while Indias close trade and military exchanges with Iran are worth some $2.5 bn per annum. Tehran had counted on the two powers dragging their feet or toning down a US measure - not supporting it. In fact, both feigned sympathy for the Iranian position until the final vote, when they switched sides.
DEBKAfile reveals that Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon played an active role in the diplomacy leading up to the American diplomatic coup in Vienna. He made discreet telephone calls to Russian president Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin and placed it on the agenda of his talks with Indian prime minister Atali Bihar Vajpayee when they met in New Delhi last Tuesday, September 9.
In its last issue of September 12, DEBKA-Net-Weeklys Tehran sources revealed that prior to the Vienna meeting, Irans radical spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and his top advisers had carefully plotted a deception-by-procrastination strategy in anticipation of a much milder IAEA resolution. They decided to offer to start talks on signing the Additional Protocol that permit snap international inspections of its nuclear sites and so meet a longstanding demand. Their plan was to drag out these talks month after month in order to buy time enough to move their nuclear weapons program forward before the axe descended.
Tehran would meanwhile demand to be rewarded for its flexibility by IAEA approval for technology transfers to be made for its peaceful nuclear energy projects. Eventually, the Additional Protocol would get signed. But that wouldnt be the end of it. A bevy of Iranian bureaucratic and elected institutions, such as the all-powerful, Khamenei-ruled Council of Guardians, would have to ratify the signature before it took effect after due deliberation in each of them. Then, Khamenei would lay down his last trump card, declaring that only he as spiritual ruler was qualified to grant final approval for a paramount national issue.
By these tricks and stratagems, Iranian rulers expected to win time to manufacture a primitive nuclear bomb. They also believed the Americans would be too distracted by crises in Iraq and elsewhere to keep an eye on their clandestine activities and would therefore leave them free to spring Irans Muslim Shiite nuclear bomb on the world.
To find out how much time he had, Khamenei demanded to know how long before the national nuclear weapons program reached its point of no return, namely one stage before the assembly of a nuclear bomb. Summoned to his office were the 37 top nuclear experts heading the different projects at Natanz, Arak, Esfahan and Kashan, together with Irans atomic energy commission director, Gholam-reza Aghazadeh.
They told him that the testing of the centrifuges in Natanz should be completed in months and uranium enrichment can begin as soon as December 2003. An enrichment level of 70 percent or more would then be just months away, enabling Iran to build a primitive bomb similar to the one Tehran believes North Korea possesses.
Before the US-backed ultimatum was slapped down last Friday, the clerics of Tehran had banked on being treated by Washington with the same diplomatic caution as Pyongyang. They believed they could run rings around the Americans with time on their side. Last Friday, the tables were turned. America grabbed the time factor and confronted the Islamic Republic with a resounding diplomatic debacle. http://www.debka.com/article.php?aid=566
Iran on the Run
Christian Science Monitor
In iraq, the United States can't find new allies to help it finish the job, but on another front in the war on terrorism, it's doing just fine.
Last week, the US convinced the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to give Iran an Oct. 31 deadline to suspend its uranium- enrichment program - a precursor to making nuclear weapons.
Europe worries as much as the US that a nuclear Iran - already a supporter of terrorist groups - would upset the Middle East power balance.
After the IAEA caught Iran cheating on treaty obligations in building a nuclear power plant, the US and Europe put Tehran's Muslim clerics on the spot: If Iran really has no intention to make nuclear weapons, then it can come clean with the IAEA.
It's a moment of truth for Iran. http://www.csmonitor.com/2003/0916/p08s03-comv.html
Iran to Cooperate With Nuclear Watchdog
Monday September 15, 2003 6:59 PM
By GEORGE JAHN
Associated Press Writer
VIENNA, Austria (AP) - Iran backed away Monday from following North Korea's lead to cut off the outside world from scrutinizing its nuclear program, but also accused U.S. officials of strong-arming other nations into setting a deadline to bare its atomic secrets.
In recent weeks, Iran had suggested it might sever its ties with the International Atomic Energy Agency if pressured too hard to increase access to its nuclear programs.
Those threats increased after the IAEA's board of governors passed a U.S.-backed resolution Friday, setting an October deadline for Iran to essentially disprove it is running a covert nuclear weapons program. The board will decide in November on whether Iran has complied.
If it rules Tehran in violation of the treaty banning the spread of nuclear weapons, it will ask the U.N. Security Council to get involved.
Iranian Vice President Gholamreza Aghazadeh accused ``partisan politics in the United States'' of being behind the ``heavy-handed'' resolution accepted by the board, but he said his country remains ``fully committed'' to preventing the proliferation of nuclear arms.
``Our cooperation with the agency ... shall continue as before,'' Aghazadeh told the IAEA's general assembly. He also said Iran would start ``negotiations with the agency about the additional protocol,'' that would allow the IAEA thorough and unfettered inspections of all of its nuclear activities.
During negotiations that led to passage of a resolution setting the October deadline, Iran had suggested it would scrap plans to accept that protocol.
Although Aghazadeh's statements eased immediate concerns that Iran would cut ties with the agency and draw the curtain on its nuclear program, the Iranian vice president suggested his country still could take hard line. He said a final response was still being discussed by his government.
``We are studying the resolution carefully and will respond to it officially in a few days,'' he told delegates to the 135-nation conference.
Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham, heading Washington's delegation, welcomed Iran's decision - at least for now.
``I hope it represents a decision to fully comply'' with the resolution, he said, describing Iran's statement as a ``more hopeful comment'' than its previous threats.
The onus was on Iran to prove the world wrong, he suggested, because ``all of the pattern of action and conduct we've seen is totally understandable'' only in the context of a weapons program.
If unchecked, Iran could go the way of North Korea, which used its IAEA membership to gain access to technology, only to quit the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and declare it was making atomic arms, he said.
``One cannot let that precedent be repeated,'' Abraham said.
The agency, the nuclear watchdog of the United Nations, seeks to ensure compliance with the treaty, which aims to ban the spread of nuclear weapons. It monitors the status of nuclear materials in dozens of countries and promotes the peaceful use of nuclear technology.
Other delegation heads and IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei urged Iran to heed the resolution and called on North Korea to scrap its existing arms program.
``It is essential and urgent that all outstanding issues ... be brought to closure as soon as possible, to enable the agency to provide the required assurances,'' that Iran is not running a secret weapons program, said ElBaradei.
North Korea is negotiating with the United States and four other countries on aid and other concessions it seeks in return for scrapping its nuclear weapons program.
ElBaradei said North Korea poses ``a serious and immediate challenge to the nuclear nonproliferation regime.'' He said he hoped for an agreement at those talks that would allow his agency to play a key role in monitoring North Korea's nuclear activities.
In a message to the conference, President Bush urged vigilance against states ``trying to acquire nuclear weapons.''
Abraham told delegates that attempts to stop the spread of nuclear weapons were challenged by ``a few rogue states seeking the capacity to attain weapons of mass destruction.'' Indirectly linking North Korea and Iran, he urged IAEA member states to ``take firm and necessary action'' to stop new nuclear states from emerging. http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,1280,-3150606,00.html
IRAN IS DETERMINED TO DEVELOP NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY: MOHAMMAD KHATAMI
TEHRAN, 15 Sept. (IPS)
Iranian President Mohammad Khatami reiterated Monday his countrys determination to acquire nuclear technology aimed at strengthening Irans military power.
"We dont want nuclear arms, no, no, no, this is against our policy and our faith, but we want to be strong and being strong means to have technology and nuclear technology is the most advanced, one that we would master thanks to the intelligence and the will of our children", the embattled President said, speaking to officers of the Revolutionary Guards.
However, he refrained from making any direct comment concerning the latest resolution adopted on 12 September by the Board of Governors of the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that called on the Islamic Republic to adhere "immediately and unconditionally" to the additional Protocols of the Non Proliferation Treaty.
The resolution, formulated by Canada, Japan and Australia and adopted without vote was described by many Iranian political analysts as a "humiliating" defeat for the ruling ayatollahs, prompting Iranian media to urge the government of expelling the ambassadors of the three nations that initiated the Resolution, getting out of the NPT and "revising" Tehrans relations with all the nations that supported the controversial resolution.
Mr. Hoseyn Shariatmadari, a high-ranking officer of Iranian secret services specialising in interrogating political and intellectual dissidents appointed as Chief Editor of the evening daily "Keyhan" by Ayatollah Ali Khameneh'i, the leader of the Islamic Republic warned the authorities if they fail to boot out Canadian, Australian and Japanese top envoys from Iran, "the Muslim people of Iran would do it themselves".
But Irans atomic energy Chief Qolamreza Aqazadeh said Iran would proceed with its obligations with the Agency about the Additional Protocol.
"Tehran is fully committed to its NPT responsibilities, "not because of its contractual obligation, but also because of its religious and ethical considerations", he added.
As for the conditions sat by IAEA for Iran to fulfil clauses of the Protocols, Aqazadeh said Iran needed "few days" to study the Resolution before to officially respond to it, according to the official Iranian news agency IRNA.
"We have serious problems with this resolution. From its inconsistency with the NPT to its deadline for cooperation and its venomous language are all problematic. These are our preliminary views on this resolution. We are studying the resolution carefully and will officially respond to it in a few days", he said.
According to Iranian analysts, this shows that the Iranian clerical leadership is divided on how to respond to the Resolution.
"In the 25 years the ayatollahs are ruling Iran, they have never been in such an awkward and difficult position", commented Mr. Sadeq Saba, the senior BBC commentator on Iranian affairs.
"Now, Iran has to accept the Resolution or to follow the example of North Korea", he pointed out, adding that in this case, Tehran might face tough sanctions from the UNs Security Council.
In an article on Saturday, the daily "Jomhoori Eslami" (Islamic Republic" that belongs to Mr. Khameneh'i actually suggested this solution, saying that "one must accept that North Korean dealing with IAEA and NPT is the correct one".
The Stalinist regime of Pyongyang expelled last December all IAEAs experts and left the NPT altogether.
Mr Aqazadeh assured that Tehran would continue cooperation with the IAEA within the framework of the comprehensive safeguards will continue as before, but stressed that being a signatory to the NPT, "Irans right to the peaceful nuclear technology must also be accepted as an established and recognized fact".
"We are here with the message of willingness to find ways and means that would salvage the process and maintain the issue within the framework of the relevant international body, under the direction of the IAEA director general, taking into account the interpretations put forth by the majority of the Board member on the content of the resolution", said Aghazadeh, who is also a vice-president.
According to the official, Tehran would "surely" have had achieved the desired results of full transparency and confidence, but the Resolution "will certainly not help the process forward and is thus seen as "counter productive".
"The resolution goes beyond the words and spirit of the NPT and the IAEA Statutes, even beyond the provisions of the Additional Protocol, which we are still in the process of negotiating it", Mr. Aqazadeh argued, adding that the Iranian delegation could not have associated itself with
such a resolution which was "pushed to a decision through resorting to false attributions to the Secretariat, arms twisting at many capitals, and stone walling the views and amendments of not only 15 members of the NAM, but also those of others including some of the co-sponsors themselves.
Minutes before the Resolution was accepted, the Iranian delegation, led by Mr. Ali Akbar Salehi, Irans ambassador at the IAEA had left the meeting in protest, accusing the United States, France, Germany and Britain of masterminding the "illegal and illegitimate" decision.
"We reject in the strongest terms this resolution," chief Iranian delegate Ali Akbar Salehi said in a statement. "Unfortunately the sponsors of the draft reacted in total disregard for principles of multilateralism and did not entertain our amendments."
"This is unilateralism at its worst, that is to say, extreme unilateralism posed under a multilateralist cloak. We believe there is more to this resolution that meets the eye at the first glance. There is an agenda behind it that is conceived in escalating tension and chaos to divert attention from serious issues that deal with partial politics in the United States", Mr. Aqazadeh went on, adding that in Tehran`s view, such a heavy-handed approach to get a resolution casts considerable doubt on the validity, utility, and above all, the practicality of such a resolution"
He added that Irans planned nuclear development program to generate 7000 MW of electricity with secured fuel is "factored" in consideration of strengthening the Safeguards, through joining the Additional Protocol or otherwise, so as to encourage the international community to give a serious impetus to others in the Middle East to respond positively to Iran`s initiative for establishing the Middle East as a nuclear-weapon free zone.
"We firmly believe that the NPT is the cornerstone of the international efforts to achieve complete nuclear disarmament and to halt vertical and horizontal proliferation of this horrible weapon", Mr. Aqazadeh said, adding: "Now the essential question is posed as to which country takes the responsibility and the blame of providing Israel with nuclear weapons and thus overlooking its NPT obligations on non-proliferation?"
In his speech to the ayatollahs' Praetorian Guards officers and reported by the independent Iranian Students News Agency "ISNA", the powerless Hojjatoleslam Khatami also emphasised on Irans efforts and wishes for a Middle East and the world free of all mass destruction weapons.
Aqazadeh repeated that Irans nuclear projects have only "peaceful and civilian purposes", above all meeting the countrys increasing need in electricity.
But Washington and Tel Aviv suspects that the nuclear-powered electricity station that is under construction with the help of Russia is a "cover" for building an atomic bomb aimed primarily at the Jewish State that Iran ayatollahs want to destroy.
For its part, the 15-25 members European Union came closer to the United States after it was disclosed that Iran had secretly created sites for enriching uranium, a process needed for making atomic weapons.
In his last trip to Tehran, Mr. Xavier Solana, the EUs Spanish Minister for Security and Foreign Affairs bluntly warned Iran that refusing to go ahead with the protocols would mean "very bad news". ENDS IAEA IRAN 15903 http://www.iran-press-service.com/
Iranian Daily: 'Extremist Jews Plotting to Assassinate Chirac,' Mossad Agents Behind Najaf Blast
The September 1, 2003 edition of the Tehran Times released two articles - one stating that extremist Jews are plotting to assassinate French President Jacques Chirac, and the other implicating Israeli agents for the blast in Najaf on Friday. The following are excerpts from the articles:
'Jews Plot to Assassinate Chirac'
"A group of extremist Jews through establishing firm connections with the rightist groups in France try to convince them to agree with a plot to assassinate French President Jacques Chirac. The Al-Quds Al-Arabi daily reported that hardline Jews are plotting to assassinate Chirac because of his support for Islam and Arabs.
"The French security system has warned against the plot, it said. The plot is entering its operational stages, it said. A number of Israeli and Russian Jews are trying to assassinate Chirac to create insecurity in France, it added.
"The extremist Jews are in close connection with the rightist Christians in France. Recently Chirac escaped an attempt on his life when a rightist Christian shot at him, it said. Chirac's security has been beefed up. In close connection with the neo-Nazi organizations, the extremist Jews have planned to attack the Muslim mosques to create disorder in the country.
"About 700,000 Jews live in France, most of whom are in Paris. Muslims in France are about nine million, that is, nine times that of the Jews
'Mossad Agents in Najaf Blast'
"An Iraqi analyst said traces of Mossad agents were found at the Najaf blast site where Ayatollah Seyed Mohammad Baqer al-Hakim, the leader of the Supreme Assembly for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SAIRI), and more than 80 others were martyred on Friday. The analyst, who requested anonymity, told the Mehr News Agency that Zionist intelligence agents have made great efforts to infiltrate Iraqi groups in order to thwart efforts to create national unity.
"After Saddam Hussein was ousted, the Zionist regime took advantage of a lack of cooperation among the Iraqi Shia and sent a large number of extremist Jews and Mossad agents to Iraq, with the help of the occupying forces, to infiltrate Islamic groups and obtain information, the analyst said. "He added that a few months ago, a Mossad agent who knew Arabic and was quite familiar with Iraqi Muslim groups made a great effort to infiltrate organizations in southern Iraq and even influenced these groups. According to some reports
members of the terrorist Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO) have helped Zionist operatives in this mission
 Tehran Times (Iran), September 1, 2003, http://www.tehrantimes.com/Description.asp?Da=9/1/03&Cat=2&Num=009.
 Tehran Times (Iran), September 1, 2003, http://www.tehrantimes.com/Description.asp?Da=9/1/03&Cat=2&Num=006. http://www.memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD56303
Iranian FM pledges support to Arafat
Monday, September 15, 2003 - ©2003
GAZA CITY, Sept 15 (AFP) - Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi telephoned Yasser Arafat to express support for the Palestinian leader after Israeli threats to expel or even assassinate him, Arafat's top aide told AFP here Monday.
Kharazi "paid tribute to president Arafat's resilience and to his concern for the Palestinian people's national and legitimate rights," said Nabil Abu Rudeina.
He also indicated "Iran's support for the (Palestinian) cause and for the Palestinian people." The Israeli security cabinet's last week approved in principle Arafat's "removal" in the wake of two suicide bombs near Tel Aviv and in Jerusalem, sparking outrage among Palestinians as well as criticism from Washington.
Ehud Olmert, who is number two in Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's government, also said Sunday the assassination of Arafat was an option to try and halt the killing of innocent civilians. http://www.iranmania.com/News/ArticleView/Default.asp?NewsCode=18021&NewsKind=Current%20Affairs
Mystery over Iranian Embassy Visits
[Ali Dizaei was one of the highest ranking ethnic minority officers in Scotland Yard. -- DoctorZin]
Scotsman - By Shenai Raif, PA News
Sep 15, 2003
Mystery still surrounds allegations that Ali Dizaei was working for the Iranian secret service.
He was spotted going into the Iranian Embassy in London on six occasions and was thought to have an unhealthy relationship with the Iranian security service.
Despite defence submissions that his visits to the embassy were routine, the prosecution refused to reveal information on grounds of national security.
Only the judge and prosecution were allowed to see the undisclosed material at a pre-trial hearing.
Police conceded that nothing of a criminal nature had been uncovered.
But Michael Mansfield QC, defending, protested that Dizaei could not clear his name unless he was aware of what was being said about him.
Mr Mansfield said: The suggestion actually is that he remains a threat to national security.
If he is a threat to national security, why has he not been charged. The answer appears to be: We cannot tell you.
He said the defence did not accept there was a threat to national security.
The judge heard that fresh information had come to light after police investigations into Dizaeis Iranian links which had started when a woman made allegations.
She had claimed Dizaei seemed to know a lot about her husband, who was in jail in Iran and who, she hinted, had links with the British intelligence services.
She asked if Dizaei could be working with the Iranian secret police.
Chief police investigator Detective Chief Superintendent Barry Norman, of Scotland Yards Directorate of Professional Standards, said he was unable to answer when he was asked if there was any intelligence that Dizaei worked for the Iranian security services.
Dizaei was born in Iran, where his father was deputy head of police in Tehran, and his grandfather had also been a high ranking officer.
He has dual British and Iranian citizenship.
The court was told that of 30 original allegations which were investigated, only two had resulted in proceedings.
About 12 possible disciplinary matters remained.
Claims found to be groundless included allegations that Dizaei was a recreational user of cocaine, that he used steroids, and that he associated with prostitutes.
Mr Mansfield said Dizaei was investigated for alleged association with a famous five of suspected criminals and nothing was substantiated.
Richard Horwell, prosecuting, said the £1.85 million police investigation was justified because of the range and seriousness of the allegations involved.
These had included allegations of threats to a former girlfriend, that Dizaei bullied a Pc to drop an investigation involving one of his friends, and that he accepted money from two sisters in return for helping them with their application to stay in the UK.
Dizaei, said Mr Horwell, was also alleged to have been indiscreet by telling friends information which was not yet public.
He was recorded in telephone conversations talking about the birth of the Prime Ministers son and about a proposed visit by the President of Russia.
Dizaei had also agreed to speak in the United States for an organisation run by a man who was associating with others suspected of advance-fee fraud, Mr Horwell told the court.
The man had also tried to deposit £2 million into a bank in suspicious circumstances. He left after being questioned about the sum.
Mr Horwell also alleged that on one occasion Dizaei had accepted seven free tickets each worth £250 to a function he was in charge of policing.
One of the most serious allegations was that Dizaei took £800 from a man who was n bail after apparently providing the man with a defence for drink-driving, Mr Horwell said.
The man later claimed the payment was not for help.
But Chief Superintendent Norman told the court during legal argument that he found it extraordinary behaviour.
Mr Norman said Dizaeis behaviour had justified the investigation into his honesty.
He said: There were numerous conversations on file in circumstances where he could show his integrity and he failed to do so. http://www.daneshjoo.org/generalnews/article/publish/article_2353.shtml
Iran's fears are real
Tuesday September 16, 2003
In the rush to condemn Iran for secretly seeking to acquire a nuclear weapons capability, few have paused to wonder why, if that is indeed what they are doing, Tehran's rulers should feel it necessary to pursue such a course. The answer is surely not to be found in any grandiose scheme for Persian domination of the Gulf and the wider, Arab Middle East; or, specifically, in some dastardly plot to effect control of the oil wealth of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq. There certainly are nations who in recent history have espoused such madcap ideas. But they are mostly located in the west.
Nor is there any good reason to believe that post-Khomeini Iran is still exporting its Islamic revolution and thinks nuclear power status would assist it in what George Bush, from a different perspective, calls regional transformation. Iran remains a devoutly observant Islamic republic. But its overriding priorities are domestic these days, in particular how most effectively to develop the nation's economy (including its energy sector) to provide for a predominantly youthful, restless population. Iran's Shia mullahs certainly have no interest in promoting al-Qaida's type of Sunni fundamentalism. That is why they helped the US suppress the Taliban in Afghanistan. That is why US linking of Iran to anti-American attacks in central Iraq's "Sunni triangle" is disingenuous or just plain ignorant.
Yet Iran does have one deeply persuasive reason for acquiring nuclear arms: national security. Its position appears increasingly vulnerable. Look one way and there stands a hostile, nuclear-armed Israel; look another, and there stands nuclear-armed Sunni Muslim Pakistan. Almost all around, in Iraq, in Afghanistan and in its expanding Gulf, central Asian and Black Sea bases, stands the awesome military might of America. Barely a week goes by without US officials making threatening noises towards Iran, decrying its alleged support of international terrorism, encouraging internal civil insurrection, or reminding it that like Iraq, the US deems it to be a "rogue state".
Yesterday's Iranian assurance that it remains fully committed to the non-proliferation treaty (NPT) and may collaborate with short-notice UN inspections is responsible behaviour from which the US could learn. The Bush administration's ham-fisted, provocative policies, deeply hypocritical in terms of its own nuclear arms and its neglected NPT disarmament obligations, make proliferation more, not less likely, not only in Iran but also in states like North Korea. Given Iraq's fate, what confidence can Iran have that any level of UN inspection will satisfy the US? Or that Washington will ever soften its overtly hostile stance? Faced by this escalating US pressure, it would be regrettable but quite understandable if Iran were to decide that nuclear bombs were essential to protect itself. Perhaps it has already done so.
As in Iraq, the Bush administration is turning worrying possibilities into dangerously self-fulfilling prophecies. And despite misgivings in Whitehall, not to mention the country as a whole, Tony Blair is again backing Mr Bush. Who says people learn from their mistakes? http://www.guardian.co.uk/iran/story/0,12858,1042837,00.html
"We dont want nuclear arms, no, no, no, this is against our policy and our faith, the embattled President said, speaking to officers of the Revolutionary Guards."
Yeah. We believe that. lol.
"But Washington and Tel Aviv suspects that the nuclear-powered electricity station that is under construction with the help of Russia is a "cover" for building an atomic bomb aimed primarily at the Jewish State..."
I wonder if they'll decide to leave the NPT like N. Korea.?
"This is the first time that a group of senior MPs have gone on hunger strike to support political prisoners."
"Dozens of liberal figures and former ministers have also joined the protest."
"They particularly want to highlight the plight of a prominent political activist, Abbas Abdi, who has been in detention for more than 10 months for publishing an opinion poll suggesting that the Iranian people favoured better relations with the United States."
Very significant action taken by these MP's.
Looks like the wheels are starting to come off this cart.
To: AdmSmith; F14 Pilot
"Asqar was the main person behind the June 2003 violence at Allameh Tabatabai University's Tarasht Dormitory"
You're both right
"...difficult, if not impossible, to reign them in and to centralize intelligence activities."
Rogue intelligence units? Might some turn on the regime?
To: DoctorZIn; McGavin999; Eala; AdmSmith; dixiechick2000; nuconvert; onyx; Pro-Bush; Valin; ...
US judge orders Iran to pay more than $400 million to victims
Washington, September 16
A federal judge has ruled that the Iranian Government must pay more than $400 million in damages to eight Americans injured in a 1997 suicide bombing in Jerusalem.
US District Judge Ricardo M Urbina said the attack at a crowded pedestrian mall was carried out by members of the radical Islamic group Hamas, which the State Department says receives training, money and operational support from Iran.
Powerful explosive devices loaded with nails, screws, pieces of glass and chemical poisons killed five people and wounded nearly 200 in the September 4, 1997, attack.
The lawsuit is among dozens filed against Iran under a 1996 US law that allows Americans to sue nations listed by the United States as sponsoring terrorism for damages suffered in terrorist acts. The Iranian government has not responded formally to any of the lawsuits.
In the Jerusalem bombing decision, issued on Wednesday, Urbina awarded nearly $110 million in compensatory damages, which compensates for actual harm, to the eight Americans directly injured in the attack and $13.5 million in compensatory damages for emotional suffering to four family members of the victims. He also awarded $300 million in punitive damages to be shared among victims.
Victims of foreign terrorism who win judgments against Iran are allowed to collect a portion of their compensatory damages from the US government. Frozen Iranian assets in the United States serve as collateral for the payments. http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/181_377232,0005.htm
Iran to keep calm over ultimatum
Dan De Luce in Tehran
Monday September 15, 2003
Iran insisted yesterday it would not make "nervous and tough reactions" to a decision by the UN's atomic watchdog that demands Iran prove it has no nuclear weapons programme by the end of October.
The country's leadership seemed stunned by the resolution adopted last Friday by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The resolution calls on Iran to answer all unresolved questions about its nuclear programme by October 31.
After threatening to break off cooperation with the IAEA, Iran's envoy to the body, Ali Akbar Salehi, said his government would keep working with UN inspectors, the newspaper Iran quoted him as saying.
Iran insists its nuclear programme is designed to generate electricity and that equipment was "contaminated" with enriched uranium by a previous owner. http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,1042064,00.html
Rogue intelligence units? Might some turn on the regime?
They already have, harassing reformist MPs
posted on 09/15/2003 10:43:10 PM PDT
Iran an important economic and political partner of EU: European think tank
BRUSSELS: A leading European think-tank has underlined the important role and position of the Islamic Republic for the European Union, and also acknowledged the great influence of Islam in shaping European civilization, IRNA reported from Brussels.
Iran is a very important country for the EU. As the EU develops its own independent foreign and security policy, its relations with Iran will become more important, said John Palmer, political director of the Brussels-based European Policy Centre, in an interview with IRNA.
This is a country of immense culture, potentially a very important economic and political partner of the EU, said Palmer, a widely-respected analyst and former political editor for many years for the British paper The Guardian in Brussels.
He said the full democratization of Iran would be very important not only politically but in strengthening Irans economic international impact. We know that the reform process is yet incomplete. We think that the interest of all Iranians lie in completing that process. He said that Iran has a very considerable influence in the region and the Islamic world particularly in the world of Shia Islam. The European Policy Centre, he noted, is an independent think-tank founded seven years ago, operating at the level of the EU and focused on how EU policy be evolved and improved.
The active cooperation of Iran is very important to resolve the problems in Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, and terrorism, he said. Palmer pointed out the difference in EU-US approach towards the Islamic Republic.
The EUs policy has been one of dialogue and engagement with Iran, he said, adding that We did not agree with the axis of evil characterization by the Bush administration. He, however, pointed to Europes concern about Irans nuclear programme.
The European Policy Centre, Palmer said, is working on a comprehensive dialogue between Europe and the Islamic world. We owe a great debt to the Islamic world. Our civilisation, the renaissance, the scientific revolution, the re-learning of the Classics came to Europe from Islamic world. http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_16-9-2003_pg4_13
Iran 'must pay $633m to victims'
From correspondents in Washington
September 16, 2003
A US court has ruled that Iran must pay more than $US420 million ($633 million) to 12 US victims of a 1997 suicide bombing in Jerusalem carried out by the Iran-supported Palestinian militant group Hamas.
The court awarded $US123.34 million for physical and emotional damages to the plaintiffs, four of whom were not present at the bombing but whose relatives were affected, and $US300 million in punitive damages against the government of Iran, court papers indicated.
In its ruling issued on September 10, the court said it arrived at a "default judgment" since the defendants the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Ministry of Information and Security (MOIS) and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards failed to attend a January hearing.
The case stems from the September 4, 1997, suicide bombing at the Ben Yehuda Street pedestrian mall in Jerusalem that killed five people and wounded nearly 200 others, including eight of the plaintiffs who filed two separate lawsuits in 2000 and 2001 which the court later consolidated.
Three suicide bombers each carrying bombs "with nails, screws, pieces of glass and chemical poisons," were involved in the blast. Two Hamas operatives were arrested and convicted in the attack.
The court, based on past court rulings in similar cases, concluded that Hamas "has a close relationship with Iran" and that "Iran provides ongoing terrorist training and economic assistance to Hamas".
Experts at the hearing testified that Iran's MOIS "spends between $US50 million and $US100 million a year sponsoring terrorist activities of various organisations such as Hamas" up to 25 percent of its annual budget.
The damages awarded to the eight plaintiffs include compensatory damages for physical, psychological injuries and loss of prospective income.
The punitive damages awarded were based on "longstanding precedent ... the court applies the multiple of three times Iran's annual expenditure on terrorism ... resulting in $US37,500,000 for each plaintiff present at the bombing." http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,7283661%255E1702,00.html
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