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Photos: Birthday Celebration For Nine Iranian Political Prisoners
In a program held in Tehran on Sunday, the birthday of nine Iranian political prisoners was celebrated. Families of the prisoners along with some of the supporters of the Green Movement participated in this program. - 5/31/12

Iran unveils domestically manufactured satellite navigation system
During a ceremony held on Wednesday in Tehran, a domestically designed and manufactured satellite navigation system, named the Nasir 1, was unveiled. - 5/31/12

Photos: The Beautiful Deylaman
Deylaman is a city in and the capital of Deylaman District, in Siahkal County, Gilan Province, Iran. Located at 2200-2500 above sea level, Deylaman offers breathtaking scenery to the visitors. -Amin Rahmani - 5/31/12

Iranian Homosexuals Speak Out
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says they do not exist. And in Iran, merely trying to be themselves is a crime that brings shame on their families. But now, Iranian homosexuals are starting to speak out about what it means to be gay and about the lengths to which they have gone to escape persecution. -Jeff Seldin, VOA - 5/31/12

Moderate Iranian cleric lauds internet and Facebook
Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has praised Facebook, saying internet social media are a "blessing for the world." ISNA reports that the head of Iran's Expediency Council, Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, at a recent gathering to discuss developments in the Middle East, said the role of the internet in these developments is commendable. - 5/31/12

Thailand stuns Iran futsal team in Asian Championship
Iran left stunned by Thailand in the semi-final round of the AFC Futsal Championship 2012 in Dubai, the UAE on Wednesday. - 5/31/12

Flame War: New Alarm Bells, And Old Questions, About The Flame Virus And Cyber-War
Tuesday morning, computer security analysts around the world woke to startling news. Namely, that the "Flame" infection has been stalking targets in the Middle East since at least 2010 (and possibly earlier) and only now uncovered. Worse, as malware goes, "Flame" is pretty ugly. -Doug Bernard, VOA - 5/31/12

Former Crown Prince of Persia in The Netherlands
The prince is paying a short but intense visit to The Netherlands in order to present evidence to the International Criminal Court in order to charge the supreme leader of Iran for crimes against humanity. At a press conference in The Hague, Reza Pahlavi strongly warned against a military attack on Iran. - 5/31/12

Iranian 'running man' spreads message of world peace
Reza Baluchi has been running all his life, running for freedom, running for peace. It started when he ran away from home at the age of eight. Later he ran away from his homeland, Iran, and spent seven years on a bicycle, pedaling 49,700 miles across 55 countries. In 2002, he reached America. He now lives in a tent in Death Valley. -CNN - 5/31/12

Notorious Former Tehran Prosecutor To Be Indicted
Saeed Mortazavi, the former Tehran Prosecutor and a suspect in the torture and death of detainees at Kahrizak Prison, will reportedly be indicted by the end of June. - 5/31/12

Iranian police restrict sale of neckties
In a report on Tuesday, ISNA writes: "The latest news tells of restrictions on the sale of neckties." A retailer told ISNA: "The order has been issued by the security police, and we are obliged to remove all neckties from our stores." - 5/31/12

The Washington Post Gets Tough With Iran
Many Washington pundits understand that the conclusion of a tale very much depends on where one starts. The starting point is how the argument is framed, and if the reader accepts the initial premises, then the rest of the case being made falls into place. -Philip Giraldi, - 5/31/12

Iran Cancels $2 Billion Dam Deal With China
Chinese and Iranian media are reporting that Iran has canceled a $2 billion contract for a Chinese firm to help build a major hydroelectric dam in Iran's southwestern Lorestan Province. - 5/31/12

By not lifting sanctions, West and Obama are helping Iran enrich uranium
The West just blew its latest chance to rein in Iran's nuclear enrichment program. Though Iran expressed willingness to compromise on key demands, by refusing to ease sanctions, the P5+1 nations offered no meaningful reciprocity, derailing the possibility of a deal with Tehran. -Yousaf Butt, CSM - 5/31/12

Iran Faced With Growing Brain Drain: Report
Iranian media report that close to 62 percent of Iran's academic elite have left Iran to pursue their education at top foreign universities. The Shargh Newspaper reported on the brain drain today, saying 94 percent of the Iranian students now pursuing post-graduate degrees at prestigious universities around the world received their bachelor's degree from Iran's top university, Sanati Sharif. - 5/30/12

Iranian and US Research Institutions Announce Collaboration
Iranian and US research institutions announce collaboration agreement for scientific publications on aneutronic fusion, a possible route to cheap, safe, clean energy - 5/30/12

US Chemistry Nobel Laureate to arrive in Tehran
Chemistry Nobel Laureate Peter Agre, Professor and Director of the Johns Hopkins Malaria Research Institute and Dr. Norman Neureiter the Acting Director of Center for Science, Technology & Security Policy of American Association for the Advancement of Science and the first US scientific ambassador to Europe are to arrive in Tehran in coming days. - 5/30/12

Jackson Pollock masterpiece returns to Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art
A masterpiece by American abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock returned to Iran from a showing in Japan that lasted about three months. "Mural on Indian Red Ground" was unveiled during a ceremony at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) on Tuesday. - 5/30/12

Incarcerated Blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki's Protest Letter To The Supreme Leader Khamenei
Your Excellency, Ayatollah Khamenei, Just as you became disturbed over the Tehran University dormitory and Kahrizak detention center events, and ordered an investigation, I hope that you at least pay attention to my dire situation, status of the political prisoners, our families, the illegal detention centers, and the manner of their conduct. - 5/30/12

Your Veil Is a Battleground
Kiana Hayeri grew up in Tehran, where the country's morality police restricted her public behavior. She left in 2005 when she was 17 and moved to Toronto, where she studied photography at Ryerson University. Ms. Hayeri returned to Iran in 2010 to explore the dual lives of many young women who are expected to behave and dress modestly in public by covering their hair, arms and legs. -NY Times - 5/30/12

Photos: Iran relaunches domestically overhauled submarine
During a ceremony held on Tuesday, the Iranian Navy relaunched one of its Kilo class submarines, named Tareq, after repairing its systems with domestically manufactured replacement parts. - 5/30/12

UN Agency to Issue Major Warning on Flame Virus
A United Nations agency that aids member states in securing their national infrastructures is set to issue its most serious warning to date about the risk posed by the "Flame" computer virus, recently discovered in Iran and other Middle Eastern countries. - 5/30/12

23,902 people carry HIV virus in Iran
According to statistics until December 2011 about 23,902 people in Iran had been diagnosed with AIDS/HIV virus, the Health Ministry said in a report released on Tuesday. - 5/30/12

Iran reaches AFC Futsal Championship semi-final
Iran maintained its 100 percent winning record in the 2012 AFC Futsal Championship after beating Uzbekistan on Tuesday. - 5/30/12

Russia challenges U.S. sanctions on Iran
Russia's Foreign Ministry says U.S. unilateral sanctions against Iran are contrary to international law, the Russian news agency Interfax reports. - 5/30/12

Tehran's back alley bankers flourishing under sanctions
Sanctions aimed at crippling Iran have been "very good for business," at least on the shady side of informal banking, says a grey-market currency trader in Tehran. "A few thousand dollars is easy, even a few million dollars is no problem," Sattar, the trader, smilingly confirms. -Globe & Mail - 5/30/12

Tehran, Caracas to ink $2 billion oil deal soon
The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA will sign a deal, worth $2 billion, in the near future for developing a bloc of the Dobokubi oilfield in Venezuela. - 5/30/12

Huge Ancient Civilization's Collapse Explained
The mysterious fall of the largest of the world's earliest urban civilizations nearly 4,000 years ago in what is now India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh now appears to have a key culprit - ancient climate change, researchers say. -Discovery - 5/30/12

Photos: Lake Neor in northwestern Iran
The beautiful Lake Neor is located 48 km southeast of the city of Ardabil at the border of East Azerbaijan and Gilan provinces in Iran. Located at an altitude of 2,700 meters above sea level, and with an area of more than 220 hectares, Lake Neor is composed of a smaller and a larger basin, which get connected in rainy seasons forming a single lake. -Vahid Moghaddam - 5/29/12

Powerful 'Flame' Computer Virus Hits Iran, Mideast
Experts say they have discovered a complex virus, dubbed "Flame" or "Skywiper," which is infecting and stealing information from computers in Iran and the Middle East. - 5/29/12

Iran to face Uzbekistan in AFC Futsal Championship quarter-final
Iran overpowered Australia in the 2012 AFC Futsal Championship group stage on Sunday and will meet Uzbekistan in quarter-final. - 5/29/12

Iran Says It Can Destroy Sophisticated Data-Stealing Virus
The Iranian government said Tuesday it has produced an antivirus program capable of fighting what computer experts are calling "the most sophisticated cyber weapon yet unleashed." - 5/29/12

Iranian writer-translator to serve out prison sentence
Manijeh Najm Araghi, an Iranian writer and translator, was arrested on Sunday to serve out a one-year sentence. Najm Araghi first had been arrested in September of 2010 and was released on bail after three days. - 5/29/12

PAAIA's CHIP Fellows Prepare for Summer in Washington, DC
The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) is pleased to announce that our Capitol Hill Internship Program (CHIP) inaugural group of Fellows will soon walk the halls of government in our nation's capital this summer. - 5/29/12

Paris gallery to hang Derambakhsh's cartoons
The Nicolas Flamel Gallery in Paris will hang a collection of works by the celebrated Iranian cartoonist Kambiz Derambakhsh in an exhibit from May 31 to June 24. - 5/29/12

Iranian activist refuses food in solidarity with fellow prisoner
Jailed student activist Arash Sadeghi has begun his own hunger strike in support of Hossein Ronaghi Maleki, the jailed blogger who has gone on a hunger strike to protest the refusal of prison authorities to provide him with urgent medical care. - 5/29/12

5+1 needs to do consultations to advance Iran talks: Supreme Leader's advisor
In order to help advance talks in Moscow it is necessary that world powers hold more consultations with each other to better coordinate their approach toward Tehran's nuclear issue, suggest Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior advisor to Iran's Supreme Leader. - 5/29/12

News Agency Removes Report On Iran's 'Physical' Involvement In Syria
The semi-official Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA) has removed an interview with a senior member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Quds Force in which he said Iran had been involved in Syria to prevent the killings of civilians. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 5/29/12

Iranian Ph.D. student wins Glushko Cognitive Science Doctoral Dissertation Prize
Dr. Nazbanou Nozari finished her 2011 PhD thesis with the title of "Is Comprehension Necessary for Error Detection? A Conflict-based Account of Monitoring in Speech Production" in the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois. - 5/28/12

Ali Larijani wins leadership of Parliament
Larijani drew 173 out of 275 votes, handily beating Haddad Adel, who is closely linked to Ayatollah Khamenei. Larijani and Haddad Adel headed the eighth and seventh parliaments respectively. - 5/28/12

Iran issues permits for Chinese labourers
The Iranian Minister of Labour has approved the entry of Chinese labourers into Iran, even as Iranian workers suffer from widespread unemployment. - 5/28/12

Iran may import 1bn cubic meters of potable water from Tajikistan
Iran is in talks with Tajikistan to import as much as one billion cubic meters of potable water, Iranian Energy Minister Majid Namjou said on Sunday. - 5/28/12

Ahmadinejad Calls For Support From Conservatives In Parliament
Iran's President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has urged parliament to stand with him against "evil ones" who he says have encircled the country. Ahmadinejad also asked legislators not to intervene in his areas of authority. - 5/28/12

Bahrain Court Sentences Eight For Ties With Iran
A Bahrain court has sentenced eight people to prison terms of up to 15 years on charges of plotting with suspected Iranian agents to topple the kingdom's ruling system. - 5/28/12

Meet 'Flame', The Massive Spy Malware Infiltrating Iranian Computers
A massive, highly sophisticated piece of malware has been newly found infecting systems in Iran and elsewhere and is believed to be part of a well-coordinated, ongoing, state-run cyberespionage operation. -Wired - 5/28/12

Dust Clouds Tehran, Iran's Western Provinces
The Tehran Provincial Directorate of Environment Protection has issued a warning about an increase of dust originating from Iraq's dried ponds that has descended on the metropolis. Heavy dust storms also shrouded certain western and southwestern provinces of Iran, making breathing difficult for people. - 5/26/12

Ashton's Wardrobe Diplomacy With Iran Gets Noticed
While the eyes of many pundits, policymakers, journalists, and Iranian citizens were glued to reports emerging from this week's nuclear talks in Baghdad, some Iranians were focusing their attention on what European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, who led the meetings on behalf of the 5+1 group, was wearing. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 5/26/12

Watch: Experts Assess Baghdad Talks at NIAC Panel
s nuclear negotiations between Iran, the U.S., and the other permanent members of the UN Security Council concluded in Baghdad on Thursday, top experts and former U.S. officials convened at a panel hosted by the National Iranian American Council to assess the outcomes. - 5/26/12

Journalism scrapped from top Iranian university
Allameh Tabatabai University in Tehran will not accept any journalism students for the coming year. Enrollment into journalism in the current year was also closed. The government's move toward putting universities more in line with Islamic principles has apparently resulted in the suspension of the journalism program. - 5/26/12

Amir Omar Named 2012 One Man Dallas
On May 10, 2012, the One Man Dallas project named Richardson City Councilmember and Methodist Richardson Cancer Center volunteer, Amir Omar, as the winner of the 2012 One Man Dallas Award. - 5/26/12

Oil Minister warns West against sanctions
Iran's Minister of Oil warned today that sanctions on Iranian oil will lead to a leap in the price of oil on the global market and he called on the West to move wisely in this regard. - 5/26/12

Efforts underway to damage Iran-IAEA cooperation: Envoy
The Iranian ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency has said that efforts are underway to spoil the positive atmosphere of cooperation between Iran and the IAEA. - 5/26/12

NIAC Statement on Conclusion of Baghdad Talks
"As talks between Iran the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) conclude, all parties should be commended for returning to the negotiating table. Obama should be commended for having turned diplomacy into a process rather than the one-off meetings that existed in the past..." - 5/26/12

Syria: children slaughtered as regime unleashes 18-hour attack on town
United Nations peace monitors fail to stem violence as nearly 100 die in biggest mass killing for months -Guardian - 5/26/12

Photos: Strawberry Festival in Soumahe Sara
A Strawberry Festival was held in the village of Soufiandeh near town of Soumahe Sara in Iran's Gilan Province last Thursday. The festive program included baking strawberry jam, making and displaying handicrafts and performances by local musicians. Also, the participants enjoyed watching a recreation of the region's traditional wedding ceremony. -Sayyedh Raheleh Bagheri - 5/25/12

Iran Nuclear Talks To Continue In Moscow
Baghdad talks came to an end with the parties agreeing to meet in Moscow next month as agreement on details of the negotiations appears to have reached a snag. - 5/25/12

Jailed Iranian blogger on hunger strike
Jailed Iranian blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki has once again begun a hunger strike to protest his dire situation at Evin Prison. Ronaghi Maleki was arrested during the crackdown on the 2009 election protests and sentenced to 15 years in jail for his critical blogging on government actions. - 5/25/12

Israeli Military Leaders Speak Out Against Iran Strike
The rift in Israel between the political leadership's push for an attack on Iran, and the security establishment's opposition widened in recent weeks. Three new voices spoke out on the question of Iran in the Israeli press, throwing doubt into the motivation of those who push for an attack, namely Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netnayahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak. -The Real News - 5/25/12

Mount Pardis, the nearest place to the sun
Mount Pardis in Iran's Bushehr province is the nearest distance between the earth and the sun, according to Iranian researcher and archaeologist Badie' Dashti. Pardis is the starting point of Zagros mountain range and the resting place of Noah's Ark, Mehr News Agency reported. - 5/25/12

Iran, P5+1 seek progress based on common ground: Ashton
European Union (EU) Foreign Policy chief Catherine Ashton says both sides in the latest talks between Iran and the P5+1 in Baghdad shared common grounds and desired progress. - 5/25/12

Azerbaijan Demands Apology From Iran Over Eurovision
Azerbaijan has demanded a formal apology from Iran for its recent statements in connection with Baku's hosting of the Eurovision song contest. Iran on Monday recalled its envoy to Azerbaijan for consultations. - 5/25/12

Iran Navy foils pirate attacks on two Iranian oil tankers
Iran's Navy warships have foiled pirate attacks on two Iranian-owned oil tankers separately off the coast of Oman and in the Gulf of Aden. - 5/25/12

In Annual Rights Report, U.S. Warns Of 'Instability' Following Arab Spring
In a new report, the U.S. State Department calls last year's uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa "inspirational." But the State Department report warns that "change often creates instability before it leads to greater respect for democracy and human rights." - 5/25/12

Video: Revisiting the 1953 Iranian Coup with Christopher de Bellaigue
Drawing on parallels between Mossadegh and present-day President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, Bellaigue notes that the Islamic Republic continues to appeal to Iranian nationalist sentiment by drawing on the idea of something's being "non-negotiable" - such as the country's perceived right to nuclear power - because it represents honor or dignity. -Asia Society - 5/25/12

California State Capitol Celebrates Iranian Culture and People this June
In collaboration with the office of California State Senator Blakeslee, Senses Magazine/Senses Cultural, an organization dedicated to creating a more peaceful environment by fostering understanding through sharing arts and ideas across the globe, is hosting a series of Iranian cultural events in Sacramento, CA this June. -Jessica Schieder, NIAC - 5/24/12

Iran, World Powers Exchange Proposals At Baghdad Nuclear Talks
Iran and a group of six world powers have exchanged detailed proposals during talks in Baghdad over Tehran's disputed nuclear activities. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the major powers put forward a proposal that includes reciprocal, step-by-step confidence-building measures at the talks. - 5/24/12

Iran Rejects Stance of World Powers at Nuclear Talks
Iran criticized the proposal from the six-nation group, saying it makes too many demands of Iran while offering too little in return. Western powers have rebuffed Tehran's call for an immediate easing of economic sanctions. - 5/24/12

The Day After Baghdad: Assessing the Iran Nuclear Talks
A Panel Discussion in Washington, DC featuring PJ Crowley, George Perkovich, Bijan Khajehpour, Aaron David Miller and Trita Parsi -Thursday May 24th - 5/24/12

Loyalty to Khamenei: Haddad Adel Promises to Turn Iranian Parliament into the Supreme Leader's Will
With the ninth Majlis now in place, semi-state Fars news agency published an interview with the parliament's former Speaker Haddad Adel that throws light on the news agency's preference to return him to the leadership of the assembly. -Shirin Karimi, Rooz Online - 5/24/12

While pointing finger at Bahrain, Iran uses culture ministry to interrogate journalists
During the Universal Periodic Review of the human rights situation in Bahrain by the UN Human Rights Council two days ago in Geneva, the Islamic Republic of Iran's delegation called on the Bahraini authorities to "free all political prisoners, put a stop to arbitrary arrests of government opponents and end the impunity reigning in the country." - 5/24/12

Iran has not incited acts of genocide against Jews: Diplomat
The first secretary of the mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations has strongly dismissed claims that Iran has been inciting acts of genocide against the Jews. - 5/24/12

Football: Al Ittihad defeats Persepolis in ACL
Al Ittihad of Saudi Arabia defeated Iran's Persepolis and booked a place in the quarter final stage of the AFC Champions League on Wednesday. - 5/24/12

Russia condemns U.S. sanction plans for Iran
Russia's Foreign Minister said Wednesday this is not the right time for approving new sanctions on Iran, and he hopes the Obama administration will resist the "excessive" decision of U.S. lawmakers. - 5/24/12

Iran's currency up against dollar amid optimism over Baghdad nuclear talks
Iran's national currency has recovered its value against the dollar in expectation that today's nuclear talks in Baghdad between the country's officials and the world's major powers could establish a long-running procedure and defuse tensions over a military strike on the regime's nuclear facilities. -Guardian - 5/24/12

Pakistan, India Sign TAPI Gas Pipeline Deal With Turkmenistan
India and Pakistan have signed a long-awaited natural gas deal with the Central Asian state of Turkmenistan, paving the way for the construction of a multi-billion dollar pipeline through Afghanistan. - 5/24/12

Iran: Navy Saves U.S. Ship From Pirates
Iran's navy says it has rescued a U.S.-flagged cargo ship from pirates in the Gulf of Oman. In a statement quoted by the official IRNA news agency, the navy said an Iranian warship responded to a distress signal from the ship "Maersk Texas," which was attacked by pirate boats on May 23. - 5/24/12

Iran Begins Talks with World Powers
Talks between world powers and Iran have started in Baghdad in an effort to negotiate an agreement over disputes involving Iran's controversial nuclear program. - 5/23/12

Photos: Sniffer Dogs Employed by Iranian Police
In Islam, dogs are considered unclean. At least one fatwa has been issued by an Iranian Ayatollah against keeping dogs as pets, and the Iranian parliament has considered a bill criminalizing owning dogs in private apartments or exercising them in public places. However, this hasn't stopped the Iranian police from employing dogs in their fight against drugs. -Mojtaba Heidari - 5/23/12

Photos: Sniffer Dogs Employed by Iranian Police
In Islam, dogs are considered unclean. At least one fatwa has been issued by an Iranian Ayatollah against keeping dogs as pets, and the Iranian parliament has considered a bill criminalizing owning dogs in private apartments or exercising them in public places. However, this hasn't stopped the Iranian police from employing dogs in their fight against drugs. -Mojtaba Heidari - 5/23/12

Photos: Iran's Nuclear Negotiator Saeed Jalili Meets EU's Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton in Baghdad
Iranian officials must follow the Islamic code forbidding men and women to come in contact. This sometimes creates odd situations during official encounters when handshakes are normally exchanged. - 5/23/12

Iranian Archaeologist Calls On CHTHO To Save Elamite Bas-Relief
The relief of Kurangun is with that of Naqsh-e Rostam, one of only 2 Elamite rock reliefs known in the Iranian province of Fars. Both shown nearly similar scenes but while the relief of Naqsh-e Rostam has almost entirely disappeared, erased by a sassanian audience relief attributed to king Bahram II, the Kurangun relief is almost entirely preserved. - 5/23/12

Domestically produced fuel plates delivered to Tehran nuclear facility
In a report issued on Tuesday, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran announced that two batches of domestically produced nuclear fuel plates had been delivered to the operator of the Tehran research reactor. - 5/23/12

Iranian UN envoy protests Google Maps' omission of "Persian Gulf"
A week after the Islamic Republic Foreign Ministry warned Google that it will file a suit over the omission of the name "Persian Gulf" from Google Maps, Iran's permanent representative to the United Nations has written to a Google executive, urging him to "correct their error." - 5/23/12

Iran to unveil new radiopharmaceuticals with 20% uranium
Iranian scientists have already employed a radiopharmaceutical method in a bid to cure malignant liver cancer for the first time in the Middle East. - 5/23/12

IRGC criticism finds support in another MP
An Iranian MP has spoken out in support of his colleague's allegations that Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) interfered in the recent parliamentary elections. - 5/23/12

100,000 organ transplants have been done in Iran over the years
Dr. Hassan Emami Razavi, the deputy health minister, said currently there are 33 centers for kidney transplant, eight centers for heart, two centers for lung, six centers for liver, one center for pancreas, and five centers for bone marrow. - 5/23/12

U.S. Torn Between Israel's Nuclear Demands Versus Iran's
U.S. negotiators going into Iranian nuclear talks today are under pressure to reconcile two fundamental and seemingly irreconcilable demands before the clock runs out on a diplomatic solution. -Bloomberg - 5/23/12

Iranian Man Fathers Son At Age 83: Still Going!
An 83-year old man, named Amir Omidvar Panah, fathers a son whom he considers as a "gift of God" to his family. Omidvar Panah married his second wife about three years ago and now it is 16 days that his child, called Mohammad Esmaeil, is born. Panah's wife is 30 years old. - 5/23/12

Too Few Military Threats?
Has America been too nice to Iran? Does the nuclear standoff remain unresolved because America has offered too many carrots and issued too few military threats? -Trita Parsi, Daily Beast - 5/23/12

Large cash injection has pushed up prices: Iran's Parliament Speaker
Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani has said that large cash injection over the past seven years is the cause of the sharp rise in the prices of goods and services. - 5/23/12

Ghotbi working wonders at Shimizu
Afshin Ghotbi looks to be enjoying life as he sits in his favorite Italian restaurant in the city of Shizuoka on Japan's Pacific Coast. It's hard to blame the Iranian-American for that -- he has taken Shimizu S-Pulse to second in the J-League... -SI - 5/23/12

Protests over Lake Oroumiyeh bring violent response
Reports from Iran indicate that tension has gripped the northwestern cities of Tabriz and Oroumiyeh, one day after protests against government inaction about the drying of Lake Oroumiyeh turned violent with police intervention. - 5/22/12

Sahar Biniaz Crowned Miss Universe Canada 2012
Iranian-Canadian Sahar Biniaz (26) from Vancouver, B.C., was crowned Miss Universe Canada 2012 at the conclusion of the 10th anniversary of the pageant at the Bluma Appel Theatre in downtown Toronto on Saturday night. - 5/22/12

IAEA chief determined to reach deal with Iran
In his return to Vienna, IAEA Chief Yukiya Amano said the agency will sign an agreement with Iran "quite soon" to allow inspection of its nuclear facilities. - 5/22/12

Iranian Director Bahram Beizaii to stage shadow play at Stanford University
The prominent Iranian playwright and director Bahram Beizaii will perform a shadow play performance of "Jana and Baladoor" at the Cubberley Community Center of Stanford University in June. - 5/22/12

Mahram wins Iran basketball championship
Mahram defeated Petrochemical of Bandar Imam on Monday and claimed the championship of Iran's Basketball League for the fifth time in a row. Mahram defeated Petrochemical 111 - 93 in Tehran's Azadi Gym. - 5/22/12

EXHIBITION: "Ciphers: Tension with Tradition in Contemporary Iranian Photography" at Ottawa's SAW
The exhibition Ciphers: Tension with Tradition in Contemporary Iranian Photography takes us to a place that many Canadians have experienced only through news media. - 5/22/12

Iranian economist to serve out prison sentence
Iranian economist Fariborz Rais Dana was arrested today in Tehran to serve out a one-year sentence. Rais Dana was arrested and transferred to Evin Prison. His sentence relates to a media interview in which he criticized the government's plans for restructuring subsidies. - 5/22/12

Filmgoers at Cannes thrilled by "A Respectable Family": Producer
The Iranian drama "A Respectable Family," directed by Masud Bakhshi, thrilled filmgoers in its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on Sunday, the producer Mohammad Afarideh said on Monday. - 5/22/12

14 Convicted Drug Traffickers Hanged In Tehran
Iran has hanged 14 people in Tehran after they were convicted of drug trafficking. A statement from the Tehran prosecutor's office on May 21 identified them only by their initials. - 5/22/12

Iran Nuclear Crisis: What's On The Table At The Baghdad Talks?
World powers are meeting in Baghdad with Iran this week over the Islamic republic's controversial nuclear program. Here are five things to know ahead of time. -Charles Recknagel, RFE - 5/22/12

Iran: Rising unemployment hits Kermanshah
Five thousand workers at the brick-making burners in Kermanshah province have been laid off over the past two years, the Kermanshah Post website reports. - 5/22/12

Russia warns against military attack on Iran
Speaking to reporters on his return from the G8 summit at Camp David, Russian deputy foreign minister Sergey Ryabkov said G8 leaders have signalled that they are ready to tap into emergency oil stockpiles this summer in order to increase pressure on Iran, which he says reveals that some states are considering a military option against Iran. - 5/22/12

18,000 patients waiting for organ transplant in Iran
The director of the organ transplant society announced recently that about 18,000 patients are waiting for organ transplant in the country. - 5/22/12

Iran plans to raise daily oil output by 1.5 million barrels by 2016
Iranian Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi has said that it is projected that the country's oil output will increase by 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) by 2016. - 5/22/12

Iran to build oil export terminal outside Strait of Hormuz
Iranian Oil Terminals Company (IOTC) managing director Pirouz Mousavi says Iran plans to build a new export terminal at Bandar Jask, on the Gulf of Oman coast of Iran. - 5/22/12

Tehran recalls envoy to Baku over insults
Iran has recalled its ambassador to Azerbaijan over insults against the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei during a planned gathering in front of the Iranian embassy in Baku. - 5/22/12

Iran wins Greco-Roman Wrestling World Cup
Iranian Greco-Roman wrestling national team managed to top 2012 Greco-Roman Wrestling World Cup for the third successive year. - 5/21/12

Photos: Operation "Dog Walkers" and "Hijab Violating Women"
On Saturday night, the police in Tehran went after the dog walkers and the women drivers with improper hijab. Owning dogs in Iran is frowned upon, and walking the dogs in the streets is forbidden. Also, women are expected to adhere to hijab rules. - 5/21/12

Photos: The Stepped Village of Ashtabin
The stepped village of Ashtabin is located near the town of Jolfa, by the Aras river, in Iran's East Azerbaijan province. This village, which goes back to Safavi era, was registered in Iran's national heritage list in May 2000. -Mahsa Jamali - 5/21/12

Photos: Dyeing Workshop in Arak
The last traditional dying workshop in Arak, Iran will be closing soon after the retirement of its remaining workers. This is due to lack of support for handwoven Sarouk Persian rugs which is one of the highest quality handwoven carpets in the world. - 5/21/12

Rostam 2 Series by Siamak Filizadeh at LCMA
In his ingenious mixed-media series Rostam 2-Return, Iranian artist Filizadeh Siamak draws upon the rich literary and visual traditions of the Shahnama or Book of Kings. As with other literary masterpieces, the Shahnama, the Iranian national epic, has an appeal and an elasticity that has allowed successive generations to discover or invent new meanings. - 5/21/12

Talented Iranian Students To Receive Special Marriage Gift
Currently the newlywed talented students receive 5-million rial (407 dollars) gift and this figure will rise to 10 million rials next year which will start on March 21, Nasrin Soltankhah told reporters on the sidelines of a ceremony arranged to award gifts to talented married students. - 5/21/12

Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps Denies Influencing Election
IRGC has rejected recent statements by a Tehran MP who says the guards interfered in the parliamentary election process, adding that such claims could be subject to prosecution. - 5/21/12

UN Nuclear Chief Seeks Weapons Probe Deal In Tehran
International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director-General Yukiya Amano was reported to have met with the head of Iran's nuclear-energy organization, Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani, during talks on May 21. -RFE - 5/21/12

China's crude imports from Iran rise 53.2 percent in April
China's oil imports from Iran have increased by 53.2 percent in April to 388,034 barrels per day (bpd) from 253,302 bpd a month earlier, Chinese customs data shows. - 5/21/12

Iranian Navy Rescues Philippine Freighter in Gulf of Oman
The Philippine ship, named Rosita, with 23 crews on board was attacked by pirates while heading from India to Qatar, but the Iranian forces managed to release the ship. - 5/21/12

NATO: Missile Defense Shield for Europe is Up and Running
Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Sunday in Chicago that the system has entered "interim capability" - with missile interceptors on a U.S. warship in the Mediterranean and a radar system in Turkey. - 5/21/12

Photos: Construction of Ahvaz Metro
Ahvaz is a city in and the capital of Khuzestan Province, Iran with a population of over 1.5 million. A metro urban railway system is being built by the Ahvaz urban railway. It will be a 23 km underground line with 24 stations. - 5/20/12

Iranian student activist Mahdieh Golroo released from jail
Iranian student activist Mahdieh Golroo was released from Evin Prison today, Saturday, after 30 months in prison. Golroo was arrested during the widespread arrests and the heavy government crackdown on election protesters in Tehran and all of Iran's major cities. - 5/20/12

Obama: G8 To Combine Sanctions, Diplomacy In Iran Talks
U.S. President Barack Obama says the leaders of the Group of Eight (G8) remain committed to using a combined approach of sanctions and diplomacy to push Iran to show its nuclear program is peaceful. - 5/20/12

Iranian MP Decries IRGC Interference In Elections
Ali Motahari, a conservative Iranian MP, has accused Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) of direct involvement in the ninth parliamentary elections, declaring that the "interference" was a "scourge" for both the Revolutionary Guards and the Islamic regime. - 5/20/12

Ahwazi Arabs facing unfair trial, risk torture in Iran: Amnesty International
Six members of Iran's Ahwazi Arab minority are due to go on trial in Iran on 20 May. The men were detained without charge for almost a year and all were arrested in connection with their activities on behalf of Iran's Ahwazi Arab minority. - 5/20/12

Iran opens RIRA Art Gallery in Dubai
The first Iranian art gallery dubbed "RIRA" Gallery was inaugurated in Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) showing works of Iranian artists in 3 generations. - 5/20/12

Tens Of Thousands Protest Bahrain-Saudi Arabia Union Plan
Tens of thousands of mainly Shi'a have joined a march in Bahrain to denounce proposals for closer unity between the Sunni-ruled kingdom and neighboring Saudi Arabia. Protesters chanted "Bahrain is not for sale," as they marched outside the capital, Manama. - 5/20/12

Iran: Accused in fraud case attends government meetings
Iranian news websites report that the former deputy head of the Central Bank, who is accused of playing a part in Iran's $3-billion bank fraud and is currently out on bail, is attending important meetings of the Ahmadinejad administration. - 5/20/12

Iran to be among five top countries with drilling tech by 2016
Deputy Iranian Oil Minister for Research and Technology said Iran would be placed among the five top countries with drilling industry by the end of the 5th development program (2016). - 5/20/12

Oil sanctions on Iran will push crude prices to $160: Iran Finance Minister
Iran's Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Shamseddin Hosseini says if EU sanctions against the Islamic Republic take effect, oil prices will soar to as high as USD 160 per barrel. - 5/20/12

IAEA chief to visit Iran
Yukiya Amano, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, will fly to Tehran on Sunday May 20 to discuss Iran's nuclear program with that country's top nuclear negotiators, including Saeed Jalili, the head of Iran's Supreme Council of National Security. - 5/19/12

A Rare Show Of Public Support For Gay Rights In Iran
On May 17, the International Day Against Homophobia, a small group of Iranians publicly displayed support for gay rights despite the Islamic republic's tough laws against homosexuality and the associated social stigma. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 5/19/12

Update on Persepolis tablets, diplomacy and "redlines"
First, our recent efforts to protect the Persepolis Tablets from a Senate sanctions bill were successful! Thanks to thousands of letters you sent to your Senators, and to our direct consultations with the Senate and affected parties, the sanctions bill has been amended to no longer put the Persepolis Tablets in jeopardy. -Jamal Abdi, NIAC - 5/19/12

Iran's future: out of the trap
The combination of sanctions and the threat of war undermines the space for Iranian civil society to press its claim for rights and freedoms. The resumption of negotiations over the nuclear issues is an opportunity for western states to choose a better course, say Ramin Jahanbegloo & RN Khatami. -Ramin Jahanbegloo and RN Khatami - 5/19/12

Foreign Minister hopes Iran-IAEA agree on new modality
Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi expressed hope that Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) could reach an agreement on designing a new modality, as confirming reports on the agency's Director General visit to Tehran. - 5/19/12

Iranian-Russian Relations during Putin's Third Presidency
As for the future of Moscow-Tehran ties, one may argue that Russia will probably adopt a distinct approach independent from the West, which will in turn contribute to the relative improvement of Iranian-Russian relations. -Hassan Beheshtipour - 5/19/12

Photos: Morality Police Hunting "Improperly Clothed" Women In Tehran
The "morality police" in Tehran has stepped up enforcement in the capital city. Mostly women are the targets as they are stopped, questioned, or detained by the police for "improper" clothing or makeup. -Armin Karami - 5/18/12

House Vote on Iran Is No Endorsement of "Zero Enrichment" Redline
The pro-peace community won an important battle this week as opposition to H.Res.568 and its Senate companion forced the bills' sponsors to address dangerous ambiguities in the legislation. The resolution rules out containing a "nuclear weapons capable" Iran, a term the resolution does not define but that many interpreted as ruling out uranium enrichment -- the "red line" for war that opponents of diplomacy have pressured the United States government to adopt. -NIAC - 5/18/12

Iran: Article supporting rapper draws officials' wrath
Tehran University has announced that the Sobh-e Farda student newspaper has been shut down after publishing an article in support of Shahin Najafi, the controversial Iranian rapper. - 5/18/12

Iranian Woman Activist Nargess Mohammadi Transferred to Zanjan Prison
The Melli-Mazhabi website reports that Mohammadi, the deputy head of the Centre for Human Rights Defenders of Iran, was transferred to Zanjan Prison from the Evin Prison infirmary in Tehran. - 5/18/12

Bahrain Warns Iran Against Interference
Tension flared between Tehran and its Gulf Arab neighbors ahead of planned demonstrations in Iran against a proposed union between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. - 5/18/12

U.S. Senate Republicans Block New Iran Sanctions Bill
U.S. Senate Republicans said they needed more time to examine a revised packaged of new economic sanctions on Iran's oil sector and make sure that it was tough enough. - 5/18/12

Iranian physicist sentenced to prison
Omid Kokabee, an Iranian graduate student (University of Texas in Austin) who has been imprisoned in Tehran for the past 15 months, was sentenced to 10 years on Sunday for allegedly conspiring with foreign countries against Iran. -Nature - 5/18/12

Ahmadinejad Wishes To Accompany Iranian athletes At London Olympics
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Thursday that the Iranian athletes should do their best in London Olympics 2012 and win medals for the Iranian nation. - 5/18/12

What Iranians really think -- and the questions that still remain
Recent report on Iranians' inclination toward democracy leaves behind a slew of unanswered questions regarding the nuclear program and relations with Israel. -Haaretz - 5/18/12

OPEC Sees Sanctions Taking Toll on Iran Oil Production
Iranian oil production, the backbone of the Islamic republic's economy, fell by 12 percent in the first three months of the year and is likely to fall even more, industry experts say, as sanctions make it increasingly hard for the country to find markets for its crude. -NY Times - 5/18/12

Iran's persecution of gay community revealed
The lifestyles of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people in Iran are comprehensively and systematically denied by the Islamic regime, which exposes them to horrific punishment, bullying and risk of suicide, a study has found. -Guardian - 5/18/12

Iranian Student Organizations Respond to the Remarks of Science Minister: End Education Apartheid
A student group active in defending the rights of those students who are denied higher education has criticized the policies of Iran's minister of science research and technology Kamran Daneshjoo and declared that Ahmadinejad's administration is pursuing a second cultural revolution by practicing "educational apartheid." - 5/17/12

Iran warns of litigation against Google over nameless 'Gulf'
Iran warns Internet giant Google of legal action, should the US-based corporation continue to use 'alternative words' for the Persian Gulf. - 5/17/12

Iranian workers face growing unemployment
Close to 15,000 workers have been thrown out of work since 325 fertilizer factories closed down due to the unregulated import of Chinese fertilizers, says the president of the Association of Fertilizer Producers. - 5/17/12

Protests In Sunni-Majority Iranian Province Turn Deadly
Tensions are running high in a southeastern Iranian province with a majority Sunni population after a protest against the recent arrest of local religious figures ended in bloodshed. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 5/17/12

Iran's Coming "Halal" Intranet
For years, the Iranian government has been threatening to pull the plug on the world wide web, sealing the nation and its people off from the rest of the Internet. Officially, Tehran says it wants to create a "halal" Internet, or one free from outside "impurities" or temptations. -Doug Bernard, VOA - 5/17/12

Iran's Esteghlal books place in ACL last 16
Iran's Esteghlal football team defeated Nasaf Qarshi of Uzbekistan 2-0 and booked its place in the AFC Champions League last 16 on Wednesday. - 5/17/12

Iran discovers 2nd indigenous microorganism
Iranian geneticist and biologists managed to discover and name the second indigenous microorganism in the country. - 5/17/12

No Iranian crude oil without customer: NIOC chief
Iran has rejected claims in a report by the International Energy Agency (IEA) that say the country has stored up to 30 million barrels of unsold crude on oil tankers in the Persian Gulf. - 5/17/12

Negative Pulses from Vienna to Israel: Has the Green Light Been Given on Iran Attack?
Representatives of the European Union's member states at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have called on Iran in their latest statement to totally stop its uranium enrichment program as well as all activities at Fordow nuclear site. -Ali Qaderi - 5/17/12

Is Israel flirting with Iranian terrorists?
Israel's image as a victim of terror is taken for granted by most Americans. Thus, the NBC report from February 9 of this year was all the more stunning. Obama administration officials leaked to NBC that Israel had teamed up with a violent, cultish, US-terror listed Iranian organization called the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) to assassinate Iranian scientists. -Trita Parsi, Daily Beast - 5/17/12

'More Than Half' Of Iraqi Camp's Iranian Residents Relocated
The United States special adviser on Camp Ashraf in Iraq, Daniel Fried, says nearly 2,000 residents of the camp that's served for years as a base for a group Iran calls terrorists -- half the total -- have moved to a transit site called Camp Liberty. - 5/17/12

2 Iranian engineers abducted in Syria released
Two of the seven Iranian engineers and technicians who had been abducted in Syria in December 2011 have been released - 5/17/12

Air pollution alert issued in Tehran over choking dust storm
Tehran's air pollution reached an alarming level on Tuesday after a heavy dust storm enveloped the metropolis, making citizens' lives a misery. An official at Iran Meteorological Organization said on Tuesday that the dust storm had come from Iraq. - 5/16/12

Iranian-Americans and the 2010 Census: Did We Shrink?
Last month, the much awaited results for the number of Iranians in the 2010 Census came out. Are you ready? The count is a whopping 289,465!! Say what? Ten years ago, in census 2000, we were told there are 338,000 Iranians. Did we shrink by 49,000? -Hossein Hosseini - 5/16/12

Photos: Op art, pop art pop up in Tehran
An exhibition displaying works of a number of world-renowned artists in op art and pop art opened during a ceremony at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art (TMCA) on Tuesday. - 5/16/12

FOOTBALL: Iran's Sepahan and Persepolis defeat Saudi Arabia's Al Ahli and UAE's Al Shabab
Sepahan of Iran beat Saudi Arabia's Al Ahli in the last match of the AFC Champions League group stage. Also, Persepolis of Iran secured its place in the last 16 of the AFC Champions League after beating Al Shabab of the UAE on Tuesday. - 5/16/12

Authorities ease restrictions on captive leader Mehdi Karroubi
Opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi, who has been under house arrest for close to 15 months, has been given "permission to open his windows to get fresh air, to stroll in the building's parking area and to lock his apartment door," reports from Iran indicate. - 5/16/12

Rising Alcohol Addiction Concerns Iranian Health Ministry
The Iranian Ministry of Health says the consumption of alcoholic beverages has reached alarming levels in the southern areas of Tehran. Some reports indicate that large alcohol shipments enter the country through certain government portals with the supervision of government officials. - 5/16/12

Iran and IAEA hail talks, agree to continue dialogue on May 21
After the second day of talks in Vienna on Tuesday, the Iranian ambassador to the agency, Ali Asghar Soltanieh, and the IAEA deputy director general and head of the Department of Safeguards, Herman Nackaerts, told reporters that the two sides will meet again in Vienna on May 21 for more talks - 5/16/12

Think Before You Stereotype
I grew up in a Persian household in Manhattan. Both my parents are Iranian and they raised me to take pride in my heritage. I was lucky enough to be part of a community of Iranian-Americans that taught me how incredible it was to be part of a culture with such a rich history, so full of life. -Iman Hariri-Kia, Huffington Post - 5/16/12

Iran's inflation rate rises to 21.8 percent
The inflation rate in Iran for the 12-month period ended to April 19 hit 21.8 percent, up 0.3 percent compared to the same period ended to March 19, the Mehr News Agency quoted the Central Bank as reporting. - 5/16/12

Iranian Oil Minister denies Iran's oil exports have been reduced
Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi dismissed media reports on Tuesday that Iran's oil exports have been reduced. "We are not facing with reduction of export," Qasemi told reporters on the sidelines of a cabinet meeting in Khorasan Razavi province. - 5/16/12

U.S. considers removing Iranian group from terrorist list
The U.S. government may omit the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran (Mujahedin-e Khalq) from its list of terrorist groups, the U.S. State Department has announced. - 5/16/12

Iran ranks 1st in pomegranate, pistachio production
Iran ranks 1st in the world in the production of pomegranate and pistachio and second in producing dates - 5/16/12

United Arab Front Against Iran Less Likely
DUBAI - Analysts say a united Arab front against Iran looks less likely after the Gulf Cooperation Council this week delayed deciding on forming a stronger political union. - 5/16/12

Union proposal will aggravate situation in Bahrain: Iran
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast has said that the proposal to form a union between Persian Gulf Arab states will only aggravate the situation in the crisis-hit Bahrain. - 5/16/12

Iranian Navy rescues Panamanian balk carrier in Oman Sea
An Iranian warship dubbed "Behregan" belonging to the country's navy rescued a Panamanian balk carrier named "Cruiser Heilan" and was attacked by pirates. - 5/16/12

Photos: Tehran Engulfed by Polluted Air
For the thirds day in a row, the residents of Tehran are grappling with a severe air pollution that has engulfed the capital city and raised alarms. Air pollution is not a new phenomenon in Tehran. In fact, it has become a chronic problem over the past few years. -Hemmat Khahi - 5/15/12

Photos: Festival of Local Games in Marivan
Last week, the village of Sadabad in Marivan, Iran's Kurdestan province, was host to the 2nd festival of local games. 186 competitors from various Iranian provinces and Iraq's Kurdish provinces of Arbil, Dahuk, and Sulaymaniyah participated at the event. The festival included competition in various games along with traditional dances from the various regions - 5/15/12

Will the railway cross the Ancient Wall of Gorgan?
Great Wall of Gorgan is one of the walls near the shore of Caspian Sea mentioned as the second great wall of the wall. What increases its importance these days is the plan to allow the railway to cross it. But what is the real importance and significance of Gorgan's wall? - 5/15/12

Iran Executes "Mossad Assassin" of Top Nuclear Scientist
The man convicted of espionage for the Israeli spy agency, Mossad, and assassinating a top Iranian nuclear physicist has been executed in Tehran's Evin Prison. - 5/15/12

Iran-IAEA talks very constructive: Iranian Envoy
Iran's Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Ali Asghar Soltanieh has hailed the atmosphere of the ongoing negotiations between Tehran and the nuclear body as "very constructive." - 5/15/12

Tensions Simmer Between Tehran, Kabul
Iran's influence in Afghanistan is set in concrete: new roads crisscross the country, power grids supply remote cities with electricity, and planned railways form ties that bind. Tehran's also leaves its mark in less obvious ways, for example through its export of cultural and political views, strong media presence, and the funding of religious schools. -Frud Bezhan, RFE - 5/15/12

"The Sound of Rain" wins award at German festival
The Iranian short film "The Sound of Rain" was picked as the best film at the Black International Cinema, which was held in Berlin from May 2 to 6. - 5/15/12

Iran Tries to Neuter Foreign Media and International Press Freedoms
Iranian authorities should end their undue restrictions on and intimidation of foreign-based journalists and media outlets, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today. - 5/15/12

Iran to send satellite into space
Aerospace Industry Organization Director Mehdi Farahi announced on Monday that Iran plans to send the Fajr (Dawn) satellite into space on May 23, the day that negotiators from Iran and the six major powers (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) will meet in Baghdad for nuclear talks. - 5/15/12

Iran allocates $37 billion to job creation plans
Iran's High Council of Employment has approved allocating 45 trillion rials (some $37 billion) to job creation plans this year, which began on March 20, the deputy cooperatives, labor, and social welfare minister says. - 5/15/12

Iranian mosques to be exempted from paying utility costs
Despite the rising cost of energy in Iran, Parliament on Monday approved a bill making water, gas and electricity free for mosques, seminaries and centres where the Quran is taught. - 5/15/12

Former Iranian MP withdraws suit against cartoonist
The suit against Iranian cartoonist Mohammad Shokraye has reportedly been dropped by the former MP who originally filed a complaint. - 5/15/12

Iranian Automaker to Manufacture 30 Thousand Cars for Iraq
The Middle-East's largest car manufacturer, Iran-Khodro Company (IKCO), announced that it will produce 30 thousand cars, mainly Samand, in Iraq this year. - 5/15/12

India to Cut Iranian Oil Imports by 11%
India says it has decided to cut imports of Iranian crude oil by 11 percent. India's minister of state for petroleum, R.P.N. Singh, said Tuesday Indian refiners now plan to import 15.5 million metric tons of crude oil from Iran this fiscal year. - 5/15/12

Babak Fortress, an immortal castle in the clouds
Babak Fortress, also known as the Immortal Castle or Republic Castle, is a large citadel on the top of a mountain in the Arasbaran forests, which is located 16 km southwest of Kalibar City in northwestern Iran, East Azarbaijan Province. - 5/14/12

Nuclear Talks: Factional infighting in Tehran and miscalculations in Washington
As the May 23 meeting between Iran and the P5+1 over Iran's nuclear impasse approaches, the factional infighting in Tehran becomes more apparent and it can potentially block any agreement. Meanwhile, the Obama administration's overconfidence, caused by demands from high-ranking Iranian leaders that the West remove crippling sanctions, could also derail the planned Baghdad negotiations on May23. -Hooshang Amirahmadi and Shahir Shahidsaless - 5/14/12

Iranian parliament condemns idea of Bahrain-Saudi union
One hundred and ninety Iranian MPs issued a statement on Sunday strongly condemning the decision made by Persian Gulf Arab states to discuss a proposal for a closer political union among them that could begin with Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. - 5/14/12

Hawks seek to sabotage Iran negotiations: CASMII
With the next round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 due to take place in Baghdad on 23rd of May, the hawkish policy makers in the EU and US, supported by Israel, are intent on sabotaging the positive spirit declared by both sides in their Istanbul talks last month. - 5/14/12

Iran, IAEA teams start talks in Vienna
A spokesman for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed that the meeting between the agency and Iranian delegation has begun in Vienna. - 5/14/12

Any miscalculation by the West will scuttle Iran-5+1 talks: Jalili
The secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council has said that any miscalculation by Western officials will ruin the prospects for the next round of talks between Tehran and the six major powers. - 5/14/12

Iranian Culture Ministry slams flogging sentence for cartoonist
The head of domestic media in Iran's Ministry of Culture has challenged the flogging sentence for cartoonist Mohammad Shokraye, describing it as "disproportionate and unprecedented." - 5/14/12

Rezai warns about growing dissatisfaction in Iran
Mohsen Rezai, the secretary of the Expediency Council of Iran, warned that social and economic dissatisfaction are on a sharp rise in the country. - 5/14/12

Caspian states to meet in Iran to streamline multilateral trade
The 13th meeting of the International Council of Business Cooperation (ICBC) of the Caspian Sea littoral states will be held from May 22 to 25 in the northern Iranian city of Gorgan. - 5/14/12

ISIS rejects claims Iran actively pursuing nuclear weapons
The Institute for Science and International Security says a new report on Iran's nuclear activities by the dissident National Resistance Council of Iran, a branch of the People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran, should be regarded with skepticism. - 5/14/12

Activists Criticize US Resumption of Arms Sales to Bahrain
Activists and opposition supporters in Bahrain have criticized a decision by the United States to resume arms sales to the troubled Gulf kingdom, saying it could encourage further human rights violations. - 5/14/12

Iran to produce locally-assembled Mazda 3
Locally-assembled Mazda 3 with 1600 cc engine would hit the market by the end of September 2012. - 5/14/12

Iran to start power exports to Syria, Lebanon next week
Earlier in February, Iran's Energy Minister Majid Namjou said Iran was planning to export electricity to Syria and Lebanon through Iraq's power grid. Namjou said Iran is capable of exporting 1,000 MW of power to Iraq, adding that Syria had also demanded 500 MW of electricity from Iran. - 5/14/12

Iran Wins 2012 Freestyle Wrestling World Cup in Baku
The Iranian freestyle wrestling team has been crowned champions of the 2012 FILA Freestyle Wrestling World Cup in Baku, Azerbaijan, after defeating the hosts in the final of the games. The Iranian team advanced to the finals after defeating the US 4-3 in round four on Saturday. Earlier on Sunday, the Americans beat Russia 5-2 to clinch the bronze medal. - 5/13/12

Photos: Akram Khatibi's Persian Gulf tablet unveiled
The Iranian female artist Akram Khatibi's Persian Gulf tablet has been unveiled at the opening ceremony of her painting exhibition in the capital of Tehran. - 5/13/12

Football championship games opened to Iranian women
Ali Kafashian, the head of Iran's Football Federation, has announced that Iranian women can attend the Asian Youth Football Championship games in Tehran. - 5/13/12

Iranian Cartoonist's Lashing Sentence Sparks Crisis
The head of Iran's House of Cartoon expressed regret that the sentence of 25 lashings handed to Mahmoud Shokraye, a cartoonist in the city of Arak, has turned into a political crisis. - 5/13/12

PAAIA Congratulates Nader Baroukh on his Successful Reelection to the Falls Church City Council
Incumbent Mayor Nader Baroukh was re-elected in last Tuesday's election to serve a second term on the City Council of Falls Church, Virginia. - 5/13/12

Iran's Oil Exports Sliding
The International Energy Agency reports that Iran's crude oil exports faced a sharp decline in April. According to this report, Iran produced 3.3 million barrels a day in April, but 15 to 25 percent of it went unsold and it remained stored in tankers. - 5/13/12

Tehran International Book Fair wraps up with six million visitors
The director of the 25th Tehran International Book Fair (TIBF) said on Saturday that about six million people visited the 11-day cultural event. - 5/13/12

Iran's jobless rate declined to 12.3 percent last year: SCI
The unemployment rate in Iran stood at 12.3 percent last year, which ended on March 19, showing 1.2 percent fall compared to the preceding year, the Statistical Center of Iran reported. - 5/13/12

War with Iran Would Be Madness
Barack Obama's refusal to rule out military action against Iran, and several Republican presidential candidates' pledge to launch a war if elected, should appall anyone who believes, with the free-market liberal Ludwig von Mises, that "not war, but peace, is the father of all things." -Sheldon Richman, Freedom Daily - 5/13/12

Sepahan clinches third consecutive Iran Professional League title
Sepahan football club has managed to clinch the title for Iran's Professional League (IPL) for the third consecutive season despite being held to a goalless draw with Mes Sarcheshmeh. - 5/12/12

Iranian Rapper Faces Calls For His Execution Over 'Insulting' Song
Iranian rapper Shahin Najafi's new song, "Naghi," contains the perfect ingredients for controversy. The lyrics include joking references to Naghi, the 10th imam of the Shi'ites; a penis; Viagra; and the breasts of an Iranian actress. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 5/12/12

Iran's Currency Gains Ground Against U.S. Dollar
The Iranian rial hovered around 15,800 against the dollar on Iran's unofficial black market on Saturday, showing a 4.4 percent decline compared with 16,500 rials on Thursday. - 5/12/12

Seattle Film Festival Awards Iranian Film Facing Mirrors
Facing Mirrors by Negar Azarbayjani has won the Translation 2012 Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature at the The Seattle Transgender Film Festival. The first narrative film from Iran to feature a transgender main character, Azarbayjani's FACING MIRRORS is a story of an unlikely and daring friendship that develops despite social norms and traditional beliefs. - 5/12/12

Meet Cyrus Habib - The Official Democractic Nominee for Washington State Representative
Habib is a technology lawyer and community volunteer. He grew up in Bellevue, Washington and is a proud product of its public schools. Having lost his eyesight at age 8 to a rare form of childhood cancer, he learned early the importance of equal opportunity, hard work, and a quality education. - 5/12/12

Administration and Leader's Office Fight Over Nuclear Talks: A Decision to Remove Ahmadinejad?
As the next round of talks between Iran and the international community approaches, the battle between Ahmadinejad's supporters and those of ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's leader, reaches new heights. -Arash Bahmani, Rooz - 5/12/12

U.K. Condemns Iranian Cartoonist's Lashing Sentence
Britain has added its condemnation to the unprecedented lashing sentence against Iranian cartoonist Mahmud Shokraye. He was sentenced to 25 lashes earlier this week over his depiction of conservative lawmaker Ahmad Lotfi Ashtiani as a football player. - 5/12/12

Claim of Parchin site clean-up is a joke: Iranian Official
Foreign Ministry spokesperson Ramin Mehmanparast has dismissed recent claims by a U.S. security institute that Iran may be trying to remove evidence from the Parchin military site. - 5/12/12

Ashton "hopeful" about end of disputes with Iran
Catherine Ashton, the head of EU foreign policy, says she hopes the upcoming talks in Baghdad will lead Iran to abandon its alleged "nuclear weapons program." - 5/12/12

Iran discovers 26 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in Persian Gulf
The latest exploration operations at the Kish gas field, which is located in the Persian Gulf, show that it contains at least 66 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, which is a rise of 26 trillion cubic feet over previous estimates, according to an official of the National Iranian Oil Company. - 5/12/12

Putin, Ahmadinejad Hold Telephone Talks
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad conferred by telephone on May 12 and expressed a mutual willingness to "continue the onward development of Russia-Iranian relations," the Kremlin press service reported. - 5/12/12

Iran: Three Children Die In Khorramdarreh After TV Show Incident
Three children died and 5 more injured in the city of Khorramdarreh in Iran's Zanjan province due to overcrowding of a sports complex during the broadcasting of a children's TV show. According to the Mayor of Khorramdarreh Rahim Nuripour, 4000 people had gathered in the complex which has a capacity of 3000. - 5/11/12

Lashing Sentence For Iranian Cartoonist Condemned
An unprecedented lashing sentence against Iranian cartoonist Mahmud Shokraye has been condemned by Iranian news sites and cartoonists. Shokraye was earlier this week sentenced to 25 lashes over his depiction of conservative lawmaker Ahmad Lotfi Ashtiani as a soccer player. - 5/11/12

Photos: Miyanrood Stadium In Shiraz:15 Years And Counting!
The Miyanrood stadium with 50,000 capacity has been under construction for the last 15 years, and it's still going... -Mohsen Tavaro - 5/11/12

Rafsanjani says Iranian government must allow criticism
In a meeting on Wednesday with members of a number of NGOs, Ayatollah Rafsanjani said: "If the people and our youth are not given the chance and space to express their healthy criticism and to be active, these criticisms will not be silenced, they will merely be taken to underground gatherings." - 5/11/12

Iran Bans Advertisement of Foreign Goods with Domestic Rivals
Iran on Saturday banned advertisement of all foreign goods and services which have a domestic rival, a first move in line with the Supreme Leader's decree for promoting Iran-made products. - 5/11/12

Iran, India Seal Trade Deals, Eye $24B Trade
An Iranian trade delegation to India has signed deals to buy shipments of rice, sugar and soybean from the South Asian country. The two countries which enjoy centuries-old relations are also seeking to increase annual trade to $24 billion in the medium term. - 5/11/12

Iran finds large oil deposit in Caspian Sea
The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) has discovered large oil deposit in deep waters in the Caspian Sea. The oil deposit has been discovered in the Sardar Jangal gas field which contains 50 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. - 5/11/12

OPEC: Global Oil Supply Outpacing Demand
The oil cartel OPEC says the global supply of oil is exceeding demand and that member countries are pumping oil at the fastest rate in nearly four years. - 5/11/12

Ahmadinejad lashes out at critics
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad denies that his administration will increase the price of gasoline to 2000 toumans a litre and accused his critics in the government of "interference and bad decision making." - 5/11/12

Photos: Iran Darroudi's Exhibition at the Iranian House of Artists in Tehran
Iranian House of Artists in Tehran is holding an exhibition of the works of renowned artist "Iran Darroudi" from May 9 to May 12. Born in 1936, Iran Darroudi, has painted works that she calls the bright lights of Iran. - 5/10/12

Photos: Iran hits new record in building South Pars gas platform jacket
Iranian contractors have hit a new record for building the jacket of a gas production platform in phase 19 of the huge South Pars gas field in southern Iran. - 5/10/12

Foreign Email Hosts Prohibited In Iran
Iran's Minister of Communications and Technology has announced a ban on the use of foreign email services such as Yahoo and Gmail in order to "protect information security." - 5/10/12

Shuttering Iranian visa office a 'body blow' to diaspora in Canada, says community leader
Iranian community members and government officials are upset about the Canadian decision to close its visa office at its embassy in Tehran. Iranians looking to apply for a Canadian visa for tourism, immigration, or study will now have to prepare themselves, or their passports, to travel to Turkey. -Embassy - 5/10/12

The Sanctions Busters: Iran's Private Sector Allowed to Sell Oil
A senior Iranian energy official says Iran has authorized its private sector to export up to 20 percent of the country's crude oil, in a move to dodge US-led sanctions against Tehran. - 5/10/12

UN Official: Plight of Displaced Afghans 'Appalling'
U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Valerie Amos met with some 80 families living in a settlement in Kabul Wednesday. She said she was appalled by the unacceptable conditions families, particularly women and children, are forced to endure in the heart of the capital city. - 5/10/12

Ahmadinejad Praises Iran's Subsidy Reforms Plan
On December 19, 2011, Iran began a long-awaited subsidy reforms plan after months of speculation regarding the timing or degree of the subsidy cuts. The plan included subsidy cuts on energy prices, including the heavily subsidized gasoline prices. - 5/10/12

India Reduces Oil Imports From Iran
Iran's oil exports to India fell by 34 percent in April compared to March 2012. Reuters reports that India is trying to reduce its oil imports from Iran in line with U.S. and EU sanctions on Iranian crude. - 5/10/12

Perceptions of Persia
As renewed negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 over the former's IAEA-supervised nuclear energy program are set to continue on May 23 in Baghdad, politicians, pundits and the press have been energetically reinforcing the Orientalist narrative. -Nima Shirazi, MWC - 5/10/12

Videos: Stand In With Christiane Amanpour
World renowned news journalist and anchor Christiane Amanpour surprises NYU students when she takes over their International Politics of the Middle East class with a crystal clear analysis of democracy in the region. Watch the full feature and bonus clips -MTV - 5/10/12

Photos: The Tabatabaeis' House in Kashan: A Persian Architecture Jewel
The Tabatabaeis' House is a historic house in Kashan, Iran. The house was built in early 1880s for the affluent Tabatabaei family. It is 4730 square meters in area and it consists of four courtyards, delightful wall paintings with elegant stained glass windows and includes other classic signatures of Traditional Persian residential architecture such as biruni and andaruni. -Amin Rahmani - 5/9/12

India rebuffs Clinton's call for reduction in oil imports from Iran
Resisting U.S. pressure to further scale down oil imports from sanction-hit Iran, India made it clear that it has to look at the issue involved beyond the energy trade as it has "vital" security stakes in the Persian Gulf region. - 5/9/12

Iran Filters Khamenei's Fatwa On Antifiltering
Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has apparently become the latest victim of Iran's Internet censorship regime -- to which he himself has given his blessing and approval. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 5/9/12

Independent UN experts urge Iran to ensure protection for rights defenders
A group of independent United Nations experts condemned the ongoing arrests and harsh sentencing of human rights defenders in Iran, and urged the Government to ensure they are provided with adequate protection. - 5/9/12

Iranian Workers Gather in Protest: 3,000 Laid Off in One Week
While Tehran is the scene of political battles among its power mongers, a situation that has embroiled the establishment in its deepest political crisis, workers in the country continue to be laid off, production units to be shut and their owners are abandoning their production plants at disturbing rates. -Kaveh Ghoreish, Rooz - 5/9/12

An Evening of Persian Poetry in London
Poetry reading and discussion with poets Azita Ghahreman and Reza Mohammadi, and their translators Maura Dooley and Nick Laird, moderated by Julia Bird - 5/9/12

Iran Plans to Produce 15 New Vaccines
Head of Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute in Iran Hadi Famil Qadakchi announced on Tuesday that the country plans to produce 15 new types of vaccine in the next three years. - 5/9/12

Israel Forms Unity Government, Calls Off Early Elections
Under the deal, (Iranian-born) Kadima leader Shaul Mofaz - a former army chief and defense minister-- becomes vice-prime minister and joins Mr. Netanyahu's powerful inner cabinet. - 5/9/12

Iran builds machine to help SCI patients' movements
Iranian researchers managed to design and build a machine which helps the patients suffering Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) increase their movement abilities. - 5/9/12

Britain seeks delay on EU sanctions on Iran
European diplomats told Reuters on Wednesday that Britain is seeking a delay of up to six months for the ban on "providing insurance for tankers carrying Iranian oil, arguing that it could lead to a damaging spike in oil prices." - 5/9/12

Ahmadinejad's letter to Shahroudi goes against Constitution: GC
In a letter published on Monday, which was addressed to Ayatollah Shahroudi, who is the chairmen of the special council tasked with settling disagreements and regulating relations between the three branches of government, Ahmadinejad said that a recently passed law which authorizes the Majlis to oversee the conduct of lawmakers is "discriminatory" and "unconstitutional". - 5/9/12

NIAC Calls on Google to Reinstate Accurate Title for Persian Gulf
The National Iranian American Council (NIAC) calls on Google to immediately reinstate the name "Persian Gulf" in its Google Maps application and to ensure all of its informational products include the historically accurate, internationally recognized, and politically neutral title for the Persian Gulf. - 5/8/12

Photos: Varf Chal Traditional Ceremony in Ab Ask Village, Amol
On some days during Noruz women become rulers for a short period and are given full authority as the monarch or queen of their villages. In northern Iran, the ancient and annual ritual of varf chal (or 'Zan Shahi', literally meaning the monarchical rule of women) is celebrated in Ordibehesht (the second month of spring, April 21-May 21). -Majid Nikjou - 5/8/12

Photos: Sadra Shipbuilding in Bushehr, Iran
Sadra Industrial Island is located in Bushehr, souther Iran. SADRA also known as "Iran Marine Industrial Company" was founded in 1968 as a small ship repair yard in Bushehr. Since then, SADRA has established itself as the leading shipbuilding and ship repairing company in Iran. - 5/8/12

PAAIA Launches 2012 Mentorship Program
The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) is pleased to announce that applications for the 2012-13 PAAIA Mentorship Program open today through June 4th, 2012. Since 2010, PAAIA has matched over 200 young Iranian Americans to industry leaders across the country. - 5/8/12

Iran Bans Banks From Sending Statements To 'Foreign' E-mail Addresses
Iran's Minister of Communications and Information technology, Reza Taghipour has sent a letter to the head of the country's Central Bank, Mahmud Bahmani, asking him to instruct banks to refrain from sending bank statements to e-mail addresses administered by foreign providers. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 5/8/12

Pinched Aspirations of Iran's Young Multitudes
About two months ago, when many Iranian families were stocking up on rice and meat to prepare for seemingly inevitable military conflict with the West over Iran's nuclear program, Ali Mesgaran, 35, decided to open a sandwich shop. -Thomas Erdbring, NY Times - 5/8/12

Iran: Two judicial officials arrested over $2.6B fraud case
Two former judicial officials have been arrested in connection with a $2.6 billion financial fraud case, Judiciary spokesman Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejeii announced on Monday. - 5/8/12

Clinton Discusses Iran, Pakistan with Indian Counterpart
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has wrapped up her visit to India with a wide-ranging discussion of mutual strategic issues. The discussions in New Delhi Tuesday ranged from Iranian oil to Pakistani counter-terror efforts. - 5/8/12

U.S. wants firm action from Iran
The United States has called on Iran to take "urgent practical steps" to build confidence about its nuclear program during talks with the G5+1. - 5/8/12

Iran to mass produce second home-made car
Iranian Supplying Automotive Parts Co (SAPCO)'s Deputy for Technical and Engineering said the second Iranian domestically-made car dubbed "Runna", 70 percent of which has been made by domestic technology, would be mass produced late May or early June. - 5/8/12

South Korean Nuclear Inspector Killed In Iran Car Accident
A South Korean nuclear inspector working with the International Atomic Energy Organization (IAEA) has reportedly been killed in a car accident in Iran. His colleague, who reports say is from Slovakia was wounded in the accident, which took place near a reactor site in central Iran. - 5/8/12

Iran to run first petrorefinary in Middle Eeast
Iran plan to launch the first petrorefinary in the Middle East in 2012, said the Manager of Integrated Planning of National Iranian Oil Refining and Distribution Company (NIORDC). - 5/8/12

Photos: Visiting Armenian Leader says Armenian community has satisfactory co-existence with Muslims in Iran
Armenian religious leader from Sicily Church Jasliq Aram I said on Monday that Iran acts based on justice and the Armenian community in Iran has had satisfactory co-existence with Muslim fellow countrymen for several hundred years. He made the remarks in his address to a Mass at sacred Sarkis Church in Tehran. - 5/7/12

Photos: The Beautiful Spring, Mamasani
These photos show the beautiful nature of Mamasani in Fars province, southern Iran. The capital of Mamasani county is Nurabad, which is located 180 kilometres from Shiraz. Mamasani is located in the mountainous area of Fars in the northwest and enjoys moderate cold winters and mild summers. - Afshin Azizi - 5/7/12

West denies Iran "vital" drugs: Rafsanjani
The head of Iran's Expediency Council has criticized Western countries for putting the sale of "vital" medical drugs to Iran under sanctions. - 5/7/12

Iran's rules change for children born to foreign fathers
New legislation passed by the Iranian Parliament grants permanent residency to children to born to Iranian mothers and foreign fathers. - 5/7/12

Iranian researchers produce non-carcinogenic radiation drug
Iranian researchers at Nuclear Engineering and Physics Department, Amirkabir University in Tehran, have succeeded to gain the know-how for producing non-carcinogenic radiation drug "neodymium 140." The drug would be useful in treating some cancerous tissues as well as PET imaging system. - 5/7/12

Photos: Tehran's 10th International Flower, Plant Show
Iran opened the 10th international flower and plant show as 300 local and foreign flower cultivators joined the exhibition on May 7. - 5/7/12

Neoliberalism, Capital Accumulation, and Austerity
Recent crisis in global capitalism has once again brought to the fore major structural contradictions and the consequences of these contradictions are reflected in the massive dislocation of the economy, growing number of (the) poor, concentration of wealth in the hands of a few around the globe, indebtedness, rampant speculation and an unprecedented concentration of financial capital at the expense of productive sector of the economy. -Mehdi S. Shariati - 5/7/12

Israel to Iran: We love you
With the outcome of last month's international negotiations about Iran's nuclear program still unknown, a bottom-up initiative in Israel is taking diplomacy into its own hands. -Deutsche Welle - 5/7/12

World Bank Chief Opposes Sanctions on Iran's Central Bank: Bahmani
The World Bank managing director opposes sanctions against Iran's central bank, the Iranian central banker announced on Monday. Mahmoud Bahmani had visited the IMF and the World Bank Annual Spring Meetings in Washington last month. - 5/7/12

Clinton in India for Wide-Ranging Talks
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in India for two days of talks ranging from Iran to oil imports to Wal-mart. - 5/7/12

Iran Executes Nine Convicted Drug Traffickers
Iran has executed nine convicted drug traffickers at a Tehran prison. Seven of the men were hanged in connection with the confiscation of 500 kilograms of methamphetamine from a cargo ship bound for Southeast Asia. - 5/7/12

Afghan authorities arrest Fars News Agency reporter
Abdolvahed Hakimi, a Fars News Agency reporter, has been arrested in Afghanistan on a charge of "exposing a secret government document to Iran." - 5/7/12

Iranians feeling pain of higher prices
The traditionally slow period known as Black Spring is expected to be even bleaker as the government trims subsidies and shoppers stay home. -LA Times - 5/7/12

IRGC foiled terrorist plots during Noruz holidays: Iranian General
Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) forces foiled a series of terrorist plots in Tehran during the Noruz (the Iranian New Year) holidays in late March, the commander of the Tehran-based Mohammad Rasulollah Division of the IRGC announced on Monday. - 5/7/12

Analysis: Iran's censors tighten net against 'polluting' western influence
Cyrus Farivar, a technology journalist in Oakland, California, agreed. "The internet is simply too important for financial transactions," he said. "It seems Iran wants what China already has." China's "Great Firewall" cuts web links at any signs of politically uncomfortable chatter, but does not restrict business activity. -Scotsman - 5/7/12

Iran Sanctions Result In Shortages of Cancer Drugs, Heart Medicine
Iran's "Shargh" daily reports that the country is facing shortages of drugs for the treatment of 30 illnesses including cancer, heart and breathing problems, Thalassemia and multiple sclerosis (MS). - 5/6/12

CIVICUS: Iran must revoke harsh sentences against human rights defenders
Serious violations of the fundamental rights of women human rights defenders are continuing unabated in Iran, says CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation. - 5/6/12

Iraj Qaderi, Veteran Iranian director and actor, dies at 77
Veteran Iranian filmmaker and actor Iraj Qaderi died after a long illness at Tehran's Mehrad Hospital early morning on Sunday. He was 77 years of age. He was buried at the Bibi Sakineh Cemetery near the city of Karaj on Sunday without the official funeral that is usual for Iranian celebrities. - 5/6/12

Sloppy shipping of human retina leads IU researchers to discover new treatment path for eye disease
Working at IU's Biocomplexity Institute, postdoctoral researcher Abbas Shirinifard had hit a brick wall trying to develop detailed computer simulations of the behaviors and interactions of the cells and membranes composing the rear of the retina and its supporting vasculature. - 5/6/12

Iran: Supreme Leader grants clemency to official arrested on corruption charges
The Tehran Prosecutor General Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi announced on Sunday that the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, has granted clemency to Mohammad Sharif Malekzadeh, who was recently appointed as a presidential advisor. - 5/6/12

Two Kurdish prisoners sentenced to death
The Iranian judiciary has handed death sentences to two Kurdish political prisoners in Mahabad. The report indicates that their sentence has been appealed and sent to the Supreme Court. - 5/6/12

Iranian researcher helps treating muscular dystrophy using stem cells
Iranian researcher and lecturer Radbod Darabi jointly with his collogues from the University of Minnesota's Lillehei Heart Institute have effectively treated muscular dystrophy in mice using human stem cells derived from a new process which for the first time makes the production of human muscle cells from stem cells efficient and effective. - 5/6/12

Agents Involved in Assassinations of Iranian Scientists Arrested: Intelligence Minister
Iranian Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi said the country has arrested a number of agents involved in assassination of nuclear scientists. Speaking to reporters, Moslehi said that Iran has recently made some important arrests including apprehension of perpetrators behind attacks against nuclear scientists. - 5/6/12

Iran Allocates 500 Million Euros for Renewable Energy Projects
Iran is projected to export as much as 10 billion kilowatt hours (BkWh) of electricity in the current calendar year, compared to 8.6BkWh in the past year, Behzad said on April 30. - 5/6/12

Fifth group of MKO members are relocated inside Iraq
The Iraqi government evacuated the fifth batch of 416 members of the Mojahedin Khalq Organization (MKO) from Camp New Iraq, said the governor of Khales, a city in northeast of Baghdad. - 5/6/12

Video: "O, Iran" echoes in commemoration of Persian Gulf
Vocalists Nima Masiha, Hamid Khazaei, Mani Rahnama and Salar Aqili performed Iran's former national anthem "O, Iran" during the Persian Gulf Concerts at Tehran's Milad Tower on May 2 and 3. - 5/5/12

Photos: A Lone Persian Cheetah at Turan National Park
A lone female Persian cheetah, considered an endangered spices, lives in captivity in Iran's Turan National Park ; and she is the center of attention for visitors to the park. -Aboutaleb Nadri - 5/5/12

Iran: Free Students Jailed for Speaking Out
Iranian authorities should immediately free dozens of university students currently behind bars solely for peacefully expressing political opinions, and end harassment of student activists on university campuses throughout the country, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch issued the call as part of a joint campaign initiated by Iranian and international student and rights groups... - 5/5/12

Analyst: Iran should lodge complaint against Google over Persian Gulf's identity
An Iranian university lecturer noted the country should file a case in the international organizations against the removal of Persian Gulf name from Google Maps service. Google has omitted Persian Gulf name from its Google Maps service, claiming that it does not plan to interfere in a political issue. - 5/5/12

Ahmadinejad Suffers Major Setback in Iranian Elections
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has suffered a major setback in run-off parliamentary elections that could influence the outcome of next year's presidential election. - 5/5/12

Iran paralympic football team humiliates U.S.
Iran crushed the U.S. 9-0 in a seven-a-side tournament to prepare for the Olympics in Ukraine on Thursday. Iran beat the U.S. in Group A while Brazil defeated Ukraine with a 2-1 score in Group B. - 5/5/12

Ahmadinejad's Supporters: Shariatmadari Writes Garbage
One of the President's allies even said that the writings of Supreme Leader's representative at Kayhan news group Hossein Shariatmadari, amounted to "garbage" in its criticism of the administration. Such direct attack on a person directly appointed by the supreme leader is rare in the Islamic republic. -Hossein Mohammadi - 5/5/12

Journalism conference addresses Iran's problems
Iran was a major topic of discussion as about 700 journalists attended a UNESCO conference in Tunisia called New Voices - media freedom helping to transform societies. - 5/5/12

Tehran Book Fair welcomes over 1.2 million visitors in 3 days
Director of the 25th Tehran International Book Fair Bahman Dorri has said that the number of visitors reached over 1.2 million during the past three days of the cultural event. - 5/5/12

Amano says access to Parchin facility 'priority' in Iran nuclear talks
Gaining access to the Parchin military site will be the priority for the UN nuclear watchdog when it resumes talks with the Islamic Republic in mid-May, Reuters quoted agency head Yukiya Amano as saying on Friday. - 5/5/12

Iran to start making bio-ethanol from cellulose material
Bio-ethanol is the basic fuel used as a petrol substitute for road transport vehicles. Bio-ethanol fuel has already been produced through the sugar fermentation process, although it can also be manufactured by the chemical process of reacting ethylene with steam. - 5/5/12

List of 25 candidates elected to parliament from Tehran
Those with the most votes in the Tehran constituency are Bijan Nobaveh, Esmail Kosari, Ali Motahari, Ahmad Tavakoli, and Mohammad Reza Bahonar. Motahari and Tavakoli are the vocal critics of the Ahmadinejad administration. - 5/5/12

Iran's Grape Exports Hits $313M in 2011
Iran's export of grape to more than 70 countries hit $313 million in 2011. Iran exported fresh and dried grape to 70 countries in 2011. The UAE, Turkey, Ukraine and Russia were the main importers of Iranian grapes and the US's share hit over $382,000. - 5/5/12

Iran to develop $450M gas pipeline to Iraq
Iran will independently develop a $450 million gas pipeline to Iraq with a daily capacity of 25 million cubic meters of natural gas, said the managing director of Iranian Gas Engineering and Development Company (IGEDC). - 5/5/12

Photos: Tehran International Book Fair
The book fair will run until May 12 at Tehran's Imam Khomeini Mosalla. Over 2,400 Iranian publishers and 1600 publishers from 77 countries are offering their products at the fair this year. -Erfan Khoshkhoo - 5/4/12

Prominent Iranian Lawyer Mohammad Ali Dadkhah Sentenced To Nine Years
Judge Salavati has upheld the nine-year prison sentence for prominent lawyer and distinguished human rights activist Mohammad Ali Dadkhah. Dadkhah told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that he was only informed of the decision when he went to court to follow up on a client's case. - 5/4/12

No reason to close Fordo enrichment facility: Iran Envoy
"When you have a safe place, secure place under IAEA control, then why do you tell me that I should close it?," Ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh told Reuters on Friday. - 5/4/12

Exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Contemporary Iranian Art from the Permanent Collection
This exhibition features seven works by three generations of Iranian artists-Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian (b. 1924), Parviz Tanavoli (b. 1937), Y.Z. Kami (b. 1956), Shirin Neshat (b. 1957), Afruz Amighi (b. 1974), and Ali Banisadr (b. 1976)-four of whom live and work in the United States, while two continue to work in Iran. - 5/4/12

Iran: Protestant Pastor Sentenced to Six Years
After detaining 33-year-old Christian pastor Farshid Fathi for 16 months without indictment, judicial authorities finally sentenced him to six years in prison in April 2012. - 5/4/12

Iranian leaders united against journalists: RWB
Reporters Without Borders has once again ranked Iran as "one of the world's biggest prisons for journalists" on the occasion of World Press Freedom Day, May 3. - 5/4/12

Israelis, Iranians meet in Berlin to protest war speak, Iran sanctions
Activists from rival countries to hold a joint demonstration against strike on Iran, say sanctions only strengthens regime and call for demilitarization of the Middle East. -Roy Arad, Haaretz - 5/4/12

A Journalist's Account: What Happened at the Election Commission in Tehran in 2009?
The 2009 presidential elections in Iran were a turning point in the history of the Islamic republic. They created a crisis in trust for the regime, which continues till today. -Fereshteh Ghazi, Rooz - 5/4/12

Iranians vote in second round of parliamentary elections
Polls opened in Iran at 8AM today for the run-off parliamentary elections, which have been a test of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's ability to establish some influence in the legislative assembly. - 5/4/12

From Britain's Efforts for Hong Kongization of the Iranian Islands to Saddam Army's Communiques
The recent media and diplomatic hype launched by the government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) over three Iranian islands can be considered a new round of miscalculation and insistence on ignoring "more than three centuries of papers, documents, and written history of the Persian Gulf and three Iranian islands of Greater Tunb, Lesser Tunb, and Abu Musa." -Majid Tafreshi - 5/4/12

Tensions Ease Over Iran's Nuclear Program as Diplomacy Ramps Up
Western negotiators are preparing for the next round of talks on Iran's controversial nuclear program later this month in Baghdad. Predictions of war seem, at least for now, to be replaced by a focus on diplomacy. -Meredith Bue, VOA - 5/4/12

Iranian mosques to offer day care services
The Iranian establishment has been hard at work trying to "cleanse" its education programs of so-called Western elements to put them more in line with Islamic principles, ever since Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei pointed to the infiltration of "Western values and teachings" in the education system as being at the root of the mass protests that rocked the country after the controversial presidential elections of 2009. - 5/4/12

They Were Arrested Too: Iran's Harried Student Movement
Abbas Hakimzadeh is a good listener. He's not prone to talking about himself but he is eager to talk about the status of the student movement in Iran, of which he himself is a seasoned veteran and three-time political prisoner. -Sarah Shourd, Huffington Post - 5/4/12

The game gets serious
Western officials have signalled that Iran and the 5 +1 group will meet for another round of talks in late May, possibly in Baghdad, as Iran has suggested. -Soheil Asefi, RNN - 5/4/12

Clinton Calls On China To Join 'United Front' On Iran Sanctions
Speaking on May 4 in Beijing on the second day of talks with Chinese officials, Clinton said a "strong and united" stance on Iran was the best chance of compelling Tehran to address international concerns about its suspected nuclear-weapons program. Iran denies allegations its nuclear program has a weapons element. - 5/4/12

A Neocon Upstart Attacks Academic Freedom and Iranian American Views
I thought it would be a typical Thursday at work last week, but as soon as I arrived to the office, an associate pulled me aside and pointed to a series of defamatory tweets against me and the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), the organization for which I intern. -Beheshteh Farshneshani, Huffington Post - 5/4/12

Documents show tense al Qaeda-Iran relationship
Al Qaeda's relationship with Iran's government has been fractious at best and openly antagonistic at worst, according to documents confiscated from Osama bin Laden's hideout in Pakistan and made public on Thursday. -Reuters - 5/4/12

Iranian Director Mehrjuii Honors Honest "Orange Dressed"
Ahmad Rabbani, a sanitation worker in the city of Bojnurd, returned a bag containing jewelry, credit cards, and documents worth about 10 billion rials (about $600,000) to its owner after he found it in a dumpster several weeks ago. - 5/3/12

VIDEO: Iran's Future Held Captive
The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran released a video, Iran's Future Held Captive, and accompanying letter-writing initiative today calling attention to the government's intensified crackdown on Iranian campuses. - 5/3/12

More than 10 publishers absent from Tehran Book Fair
The 25th annual Tehran Book Fair opened today amid news that several Iranian publishing companies are being prohibited from setting up their usual stalls. - 5/3/12

IMF refuses call to cut off Iran's Central Bank
The International Monetary Fund has rejected a proposal by the U.S. lobby United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) to cut ties between the IMF and Iran's Central Bank. - 5/3/12

Iranian Prosecutor Accused Of Torture Arrested For 'Disrupting Public Order'
Iranian media reported in mid-March that Heydarifard had fired a gun in the air at a gas station in Isfahan, apparently to warn other customers who were angry at him for not waiting in line. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 5/3/12

Football: Esteghlal defeats Al Rayyan in Asian Champions League
TEHRAN - Iran's Esteghlal defeated Al Rayyan of Qatar 3-0 on Wednesday in the group stage of the AFC Champions League thanks to a brace from Arash Borhani and a goal from Esmaeil Sharifat. - 5/3/12

The quiet Iranian who put 'smart' in your phones
Without knowing it, millions of people around the world use Hossein Yassaie's technology every day. His name, and that of Imagination Technologies, is never emblazoned on the sides of gadgets or across billboards alongside the likes of Apple or Google. -This is Money, UK - 5/3/12

Iran's New Commercial Law on a Five-Year Trial run
Trade in Iran has been governed by the same laws and regulations for almost 80 years. The new trade laws are all encompassing, covering everything from the establishment of new companies to tax, the bourse and transport. - 5/3/12

Iran allocates over $12 billion to boost agri industry
The cabinet has approved the allocation of 150 trillion rials (some $12.2 billion) to support agriculture projects this year, which began on March 20, Agriculture Minister Sadeq Khalilian said on Wednesday. - 5/3/12

Gulf Council Again Warns Iran
Saudi Arabia has again warned Iran not to stir up trouble among Gulf Arab states. Saudi Arabia along with the UAE sent troops into Bahrain last year to put down an uprising seen by Sunni Muslim Gulf rulers as being supported by Shi'ite Iran. - 5/3/12

Iran's Oil Output at Lowest Level in 20 Years
According to Vienna-based JBC Energy GmbH, Iran's crude output fell to 3.2 million barrels a day in April, down 150,000 barrels a day in two months. That level hadn't been hit since the aftermath of the Iran-Iraq war in 1990. -WSJ - 5/3/12

Pentagon encircles Iran: Victory would take 3 weeks
As the US beefs up its military presence in the Persian Gulf region, Pentagon strategists estimate that they would need less than a month to defeat Iranian forces should a military conflict take place. -RT - 5/3/12

Israel's move toward early vote may shelve any attack on Iran
Israel'smove toward early elections is the latest sign that its threatened attack againstIran'snuclear facilities is unlikely to take place in the coming months. -LA Times - 5/3/12

The Yellow Dogs Eye World Tour After Fleeing Iran (VIDEO)
If you saw the members of Iranian indie rock band, The Yellow Dogs, on the streets of Brooklyn, you wouldn't bat an eyelash. They could easily pass for any other messy-haired group of Brooklyn hipsters -Huffington Post. - 5/3/12

Iranian students seek understanding
Questions surrounding Iran's nuclear program have fueled worldwide debate over the past few months, but behind the televised debates a large community of Iranians at UT face daily anxiety while supporting their loved ones back home. -Daily Texan - 5/3/12

Google kills Iranian blog with 3 million hacked bank accounts
An Iranian security researcher recently hacked 3 million accounts across at least 22 banks in the country. Now, Google has taken down the blog on which he posted the account details of his victims. -ZDNet - 5/3/12

Iran ranks 2nd in Robocup Dutch Open Championships
Iran's soccer-playing robots stood 2nd in the International RoboCup Dutch Open Championships.The Iranian teams of MRL from Qazvin Azad University was ranked 2nd in the Robocup Dutch Open in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. - 5/2/12

Iranian scientists develop new technique to cure malignant liver tumor
Iranian scientists developed a new radiopharmaceutical to cure malignant liver tumor for the first time in the country. The method uses injecting radioactive particles was carried out in Heart and Vessel Center of Shahid Rajaei Hospital, Tehran. - 5/2/12

Iran to send living creature into space by June 2012
The Head of Iranian Space Agency (ISA) said Wednesday the country plans to send living creature into space by next 3 months. Reza Fazeli also added Iran would send Fajr satellite into space late May or early June. - 5/2/12

Iranian Official involved in Kahrizak case arrested
Ali Akbar Heydarifard, deputy to the former Tehran Prosecutor, was arrested and transferred to Evin Prison. Heydarifar is one of three judicial personalities accused in the controversial case of the Kahrizak Detention Centre. Detainees were tortured there in 2009 and at least three of them died due to abuse from prison authorities. - 5/2/12

Uzbekistan, Belarus, Iran Among World's Worst Media Censors
In a new report released on the eve of World Press Freedom Day, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists said all three countries are guilty of seeking to cut off access to information by muzzling journalists and blocking websites. - 5/2/12

May Day march halted by authorities in Sanandaj, Iran
Iranian security forces cracked down on an independent march in Sanandaj organized to mark International Workers Day. - 5/2/12

Call for Entries: Iranian Film Festival - San Francisco
The 5th Annual Iranian Film Festival - San Francisco, a showcase for the independent feature and short films made by or about Iranians from around the world, is inviting the filmmakers from all over the world to submit their films to the next edition taking place September 2012. - 5/2/12

$24 billion dollar import will not affect production at home: Iranian Economy Minister
Economy Minister Shamseddin Hosseini said on Tuesday that a cabinet approval for import of basic goods at a value of 24 billion dollars in the current Iranian year (which began on March 20) will have "no negative effect" on domestic production. - 5/2/12

Football: Persepolis Defeated by Al Hilal at Tehran's Azadi Stadium
Iran's Persepolis suffered a home game defeat against Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia on Tuesday. Al Hilal beat Persepolis 1-0 thanks to Youssef Al-Arabi, who was on target in the 59th minute. - 5/2/12

5 million Iranian children suffer from asthma
Head of the Iranian Society of Asthma and Allergy (ISAA) announced on Sunday that more than five million children and young adults suffer from asthma in Iran. - 5/2/12

Iran Signs 1.6 Billion Euro Oil Deal With Spanish Firm
Iran has signed a 1.6 billion euro contract with a Spanish company to manufacture high-tech equipment and components for its oil and gas industry. Iran's Society of Iranian Petroleum Industries Equipment Manufacturers (SIPIEM) signed the contract with the Spanish company - 5/2/12

No Softening on Iran: Israeli Defense Minister
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak is maintaining the government's hard line against Iran's nuclear program, saying Israel will not be duped by negotiations, and warning that an attack is not out of the question. -By Scott Bobb, VOA - 5/2/12

Israeli Party Leader Resigns, Joins Crowd Condemning Netanyahu Hawks
A rising chorus of Israeli leaders are issuing scathing criticisms of the prime minister's Iran and Palestinian policies -John Glaser, - 5/2/12

Dutch Filmmaker's Cooperation with Iranian Government
It is predicted that Persian community in The Netherlands will react to the cooperation between the Dutch filmmaker Steven de Jong and Iranian government. Currently many Iranian artists live in exile and Iranian government has been quite tough with pro-democracy movements in the country. - 5/2/12

Tehran Book Fair versus the literature of Iran's streets
Readers walking into the Tehran Book Fair will not find "Memories of My Melancholy Whores" the Gabriel Garcia Marquez book has long been banned. Yet if they can find a street stall, called nayab foreshi (Farsi for "forbidden items"), that book, and others, will be for sale. -LA Times - 5/2/12

Israeli politics in tailspin over Iran
In a single week, the Israeli army's chief of staff, the former head of internal security and the former head of external security have all publicly questioned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's judgment on Iran. -CNN - 5/2/12

The Iranians Count Census Coalition Releases the Special Tabulation Results from the 2010 U.S. Census
According to the Census Bureau, a total of 289,465 responded to the question of race in the 2010 Census by marking "x" in the "Some Other Race" box and writing Iranian/Persian alone or in a combination. - 5/1/12

Photos: Workers Mark Labor Day in Tehran
Workers in Tehran marked Labor Day by holding a gathering at Shahid Motamedi gym on Monday. The workers initially planned to hold a demonstration to celebrate the occasion and to demand their rights. However, the Iranian government refused to issue a permit. -Houshang Hadi - 5/1/12

Photos: Iranian Workers
Photographer Amir Khosroshahi has captured snapshots of Iranian workers to mark May 1st, the International Workers' Day (also known as May Day). According to Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA), Iranian authorities refused to issue permit to workers who planned to hold a demonstrations on Labor Day. - 5/1/12

Iranian Workers May Day March Prohibited
The Islamic Republic government refused a permit to hold a May Day march so labour organizations observed the date in several indoor locations. - 5/1/12

Tehran bikers promote environment-themed movie "The Orange Dressed"
A group of bikers promoting the motto "Our City Is Cleaner than Our Home" rode their bicycles on Sunday along the capital Tehran to invite people to watch the environment-themed movie "The Orange Dressed". - 5/1/12

Iranian Film Community Denounces Discrimination
Following Mazandaran Provincial government's decision to expel all Afghan immigrants, a group of Iranian filmmakers and actors including Daryoosh Mehrjui, Mani Haghighi and Leila Hatami travelled to Mazandaran to express their support for Afghan immigrants living in Iran. - 5/1/12

PAAIA Launches Public Policy Center
The Public Affairs Alliance of Iranian Americans (PAAIA) today announced the launch of its Public Policy Center, a new policy arm created to gather, maintain, and provide reliable and unbiased information on the Iranian American community, its needs and issues. - 5/1/12

'Khamenei Sat Here' -- Mountain Shrine Erected 'To Supreme Leader's Bottom'
The rock on which Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei sat on in 2005 while taking a rest from trekking a mountain in Kerman has been memorialized with a sign post bearing his image, according to a picture shared by Iranian bloggers -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 5/1/12

Israeli establishment divided on Iran policy
Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert has added his voice to those Israelis opposed to a military attack on Iran. - 5/1/12

New bank corruption uncovered in Iran
An advisor to the State Inspectorate Organization director announced on Monday that a new incident of banking corruption had been uncovered in the country. - 5/1/12

U.S. slams pastor's inflammatory move
The U.S. has condemned the burning of the Quran and an image of the Prophet Mohammad by Terry Jones, an American pastor in Florida. - 5/1/12

Police find clues about cyber attacks on Iranian ministries, firms
National Police Chief Esmaeil Ahmadi-Moqaddam has said that police have found clues about recent cyber attacks on a number of Iranian ministries and companies. - 5/1/12

China May Defy Europe/US Sanctions By Guaranteeing Iran Tanker Crude
The Chinese government is considering insuring its private oil tanker fleet to transport Iranian crude in order to defy European Union sanctions set to come into effect in July, according to a report. -ibtimes - 5/1/12

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