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IAEA: Iran remains compliant with 2015 nuclear deal
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has once again reaffirmed Iran's full compliance with its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal in the second such report after the US stopped fulfilling its side of the bargain and left the multilateral agreement in violation of international law. - 8/31/18

Trump Predicts Fall Of Iranian Regime
In an interview with Bloomberg News in the Oval Office on August 30, U.S. President Donald Trump speculated that the regime in Tehran might fall in the near future. Trump made this prediction based on his perception that his administration's policies were hurting the establishment in Iran. - 8/31/18

University Student Sentenced to Seven Years Imprisonment in Iran as Another is Ordered to Attend Friday Prayers
As Iran continues to imprison university students for attending protests, a judge in the city of Semnan, 140 miles east of Tehran, has ordered one to attend Friday prayer sessions every other week for two years while another one in Tehran has sentenced a young woman to seven years in prison. - 8/31/18

Fighting Between IRGC and Kurdish Forces Results in More Deaths of Iran's Border Couriers
At least one courier has been killed and five other people injured near Iran's border with Iraq since August 23, 2018, the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) has learned. News of the casualties comes almost a year after Iran promised to implement reforms aimed at protecting the human rights of the cross-border couriers or "kulbars" in Farsi. - 8/31/18

No Consequences For Iran's President Rouhani After Speech On Economic Performance
ne day after Iranian Parliament grilled President Hassan Rouhani over his economic performance, it appears that there is no plan for further investigation as Majles Speaker Ali Larijani said on Wednesday August 29 that there will be no follow-up of the case. Based on Majles procedures, the case should have been handed over to the Judiciary and Rouhani should have appeared before judges to defend his performance as he failed to convince members of the Parliament about the failure of his economic policies. - 8/30/18

Iran faces 27% rainfall shortage compared to long-term average
The precipitation rate in Iran has dropped by 27 percent over the past eleven months (September 23, 2017 to August 21, 2018), compared to its long-term average, head of the national center for drought and crisis management, affiliated to the meteorological center, has said. - 8/30/18

If Iran Accepts 'Iran-U.S. Treaty of Amity' Then Namazis Should Be Released
A prominent U.S. human rights activist and the international attorney of Iranian-U.S. dual citizens Baquer and Siamak Namazi has linked his clients' case to the Iran-U.S. Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations, and Consular Rights. -Radio Farda - 8/30/18

Iran's look at the Caspian Sea is security oriented
The share of Iran from the Caspian Sea will be the smallest part of this body of water. None of the other littoral states (Russia, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan) of the Caspian Sea is ready to accept anything more than this for Iran. At the same time, the Iranian part of the Caspian Sea (almost 13 percent of the Caspian Sea) has not any important oil and gas resources that is so far identified by any method... -Bahman Aghai Diba - 8/30/18

Four Christians in Iran Appeal Prison Sentences For Alleged Missionary Activities
Four Christians in Iran, including two converts, have appealed their prison sentences for alleged missionary activities, arguing that they're innocent of the charges. "It is our expectation that the charges will be dropped and their sentences struck down because there is no evidence to prove the charges against them," Dabrina Bet Tamraz told the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) on August 27, 2018. - 8/30/18

Supreme Leader Khamenei's Warns: Iran Could Abandon Nuclear Deal
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has warned that the country could abandon its nuclear deal with world powers if the agreement does not serve its interests. Khamenei made the comments on August 29 after the United States withdrew from the 2015 agreement in May and earlier this month started reimposing U.S. economic sanctions on Iran that had been lifted under the accord in exchange for curbs on Tehran's nuclear program. - 8/30/18

Unhappy with US bans UK trying to maintain trade with Iran
Britain is reportedly trying to maintain trade with Iran in face of returning US sanctions and is even seeking tips from Japan on how to dodge US bans without being implicated. According to a report by the Times, London recently held clandestine talks with Tokyo in search for ways to maintain banking links with Iran and to import Iranian oil. - 8/30/18

Iranian FM Zarif Draws Ire for Saying Iranians 'Chose' to Live with Pressures
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has drawn a social media backlash from Iranians for saying the pressures they face are a result of the life they have chosen to live. Zarif made the comment while appearing Sunday on a live Iranian state television talk show. At one point during the program, show host Reza Rashidpour asked Zarif why Iran appears to face more global pressures than other nations. -Michael Lipin & Behrooz Samadbeygi, VOA - 8/29/18

Iranian American Prisoner in Iran, Baquer Namazi, On Medical Leave
Baquer Namazi, an Iranian American dual national who was imprisoned in Iran in February 2016, has been on furlough "for a considerable length of time" to receive treatment for heart complications, his lawyer Mehrdad Ghorbani Saraei informed the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI). "He is currently with his family and undergoing treatment," Saraei told CHRI on August 27, 2018, without specifying exactly how long Namazi has been on medical leave. - 8/29/18

Iran Arrested 'Tens Of Spies' In Government Bodies, Intelligence Minister Says
Security forces have arrested "tens of spies" working in Iran's governmental bodies as part of a crackdown on espionage and dual nationals, the country's intelligence minister has said. "Financially and through other means, our enemies try to get information on our country," Mahmud Alavi said in an interview on state television late on August 28. - 8/29/18

Iran's buoyant grain stocks face US sanctions test
The Iranian government has so far bought a record 9.5 million tonnes of wheat from local farmers who experienced better crop yields this year despite a 30% drop in rainfall against the year before, an official says. Iran has been pushing to boost production of wheat and other strategic products as part of its bid to cut dependency on foreign imports. - 8/29/18

Persian Food Tours: Women's culinary, an attempt for entrepreneurship
The idea came up from a road trip Matin took with a group of Spaniards around Iran. "It was then that I realized how limited we are in our choice of food in restaurants and how the menus kept repeating the same few dishes over and over again. "Most of the people on that tour came to the conclusion that Iranian cuisine has little to offer with not much variety. I obviously knew that it wasn't true but proving it would only be possible if we were to get invited to an Iranian home." said Matin Lashkari, the co-founder of persianfoodtours.com in an interview with the Tehran Times. - 8/28/18

IRAN: Detained Human Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh Refuses to Appear in Court, Begins Hunger Strike
Prominent defense attorney Nasrin Sotoudeh has gone on hunger strike and refused to appear in court to protest her unjust detainment in Iran's Evin Prison and the harassment of her family members and associates by security agents. - 8/28/18

Iran's President Rohani Vows To Defeat 'Anti-Iranian' U.S. Policies
President Hassan Rohani has told lawmakers that Iran will overcome newly reimposed U.S. sanctions and will show "the anti-Iranian officials in the White House" that the measures will fail to reach their goal. Rohani was summoned before Tehran's parliament on August 28 to answer questions about his handling of the economy amid a growing economic crisis, rising prices, and unemployment. However, the lawmakers were not convinced by his answers and referred the case to the judiciary. - 8/28/18

Reimposition Of Iran Sanctions Are Legal, Justified, U.S. Tells UN Court
The United States says the reimposition of nuclear-related sanctions against Iran is a legal and justified national security measure that cannot be challenged by Tehran at the United Nations' highest court. U.S. State Department legal adviser Jennifer Newstead called on judges at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on August 28 to reject a request by Iran to order the suspension of the sanctions reimposed by President Donald Trump's administration earlier this month. - 8/28/18

Iranian Student Activist Sentenced To Seven Years
A 21-year-old Iranian student and human rights activist, Parisa Rafiei, has been sentenced to seven years by Branch 26 of Tehran's Revolutionary Court, her lawyer has disclosed. Speaking with the state-run Iran Students News Agency (ISNA), Saeid Khalili said her client was tried for assembling and collusion intended to commit a crime against the country's security, propaganda against the regime, and disturbing public order. - 8/28/18

'Replacing U.S. with Britain in redesigning Arak reactor not Iran's decision': AEOI Spokesman
Behrooz Kamalvandi, spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), has said that replacing the U.S. with Britain in redesigning the Arak heavy water reactor was not decided by Iran. "Previously, China and the U.S. were supposed to deal with the technical issues related to the reactor, but Britain accepted the responsibility after the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA [the official name for the 2015 nuclear deal," he told the Young Journalists Club in an interview published on Monday. - 8/28/18

Iran's Behdad Salimi happy to bid farewell to weightlifting with gold at Asian Games
Iranian super heavyweight weightlifter Behdad Salimi is so happy to announce his retirement from the sport with a gold medal. On Monday, Salimi bade farewell to weightlifting after winning a gold medal in the 2018 Asian Games underway in Indonesia. - 8/27/18

At Least Two Dead After Strong Earthquake Strikes Kermanshah in Western Iran
At least two people were killed and more than 240 others were injured after an earthquake of magnitude 6.0 and at least two strong aftershocks struck western Iran, local media report. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake struck southwest of the city of Javanrud in Kermanshah Province early on August 26. - 8/27/18

4 Killed In Marivan, Western Iran While Trying To Put Out Wildfire
Two rangers and two enviornmtal activists were killed while trying to extinguish the wildfire raging in forests in Marivan, western province of Kordestan, on Saturday. According the Kordestan governor office public relation the two environmentalists Sharif Bajour and Omid Kohnehpoushi, and two rangers Mohammad Pajouhi and Rahmat Hekmatinia died from smoke inhalation and burns from fire - 8/27/18

Iran Lawmakers Sack Economy Minister In Another Blow To President Rohani
The Iranian parliament has voted to remove the minister of economic affairs and finance from office, amid mounting discontentment toward President Hassan Rohani's government over a deterioration in the country's economic situation. - 8/27/18

Iranian Journalist Recounts "Inhumane" Living Conditions at Great Tehran Penitentiary
An Iranian journalist who was detained at Iran's Great Tehran Penitentiary (GTP) has written about the jail's "inhumane" conditions, stating in a Facebook post that day to day life there is "beyond the limits of human tolerance." - 8/27/18

Iran Urges UN Court To Halt 'Economic Aggression' By U.S.
Iran accused the United States of "economic aggression" as Tehran's legal challenge against renewed sanctions by the United States went before the United Nations' highest court on August 27. Iran filed the case with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in July, claiming that the sanctions reimposed by the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump breach a decades-old friendship treaty between Washington and Tehran. - 8/27/18

Iran's Sohrab Moradi breaks weightlifting's oldest world record at Asian Games
Sohrab Moradi of Iran broke weightlifting's longest standing world record on his way to gold in the men's 94kg class at the Asian Games on Saturday. Moradi lifted 189kg in the opening discipline to better the snatch record set at 188kg in 1999 by Greece's Akakios Kakiasvilis. - 8/25/18

Jailed Iranian Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh Starts Hunger Strike
A prominent human rights lawyer in Iran says she has started a hunger strike while in jail on accusations of antigovernment activities. The hunger strike by Nasrin Sotoudeh was announced on August 25 on the Facebook page of her husband, Reza Khandan. - 8/25/18

EU Agrees 18 Million Euros In Aid For Iran Amid Efforts To Save Nuclear Deal
The European Union has agreed 18 million in development aid to Tehran as the 28-nation bloc steps up efforts to blunt the impact of returning American sanctions against Iran and keep it in the multilateral 2015 nuclear deal. - 8/25/18

Iranian Journalist Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison For Criticizing Ultra-Conservative Cleric in a Tweet
Amir Mohammad Hossein Miresmaili, a former journalist and satirist for the Jahan Sana'at (Industry World) newspaper in Iran, has been sentenced to a decade in prison after allegedly disparaging a Shia imam in a tweet aimed at criticizing an ultra-conservative cleric in Iran. - 8/25/18

Fourth Human Rights Lawyer Slapped With National Security Charges in Iran
Arash Keykhosravi, a lawyer representing the family of an Iranian Canadian man who recently died under suspicious circumstances in state custody, has been slapped with national security charges, making him the fourth defense attorney detained under this pretense in Iran in less than a year. - 8/25/18

J.P. Morgan, Citibank unlikely to cut Iran access to markets, report says
J.P. Morgan and Citibank, two top American financial institutions, are unlikely to commit to cutting Iranian access to international markets, which will add fuel to concerns among US officials about efforts by European states and Tehran's regional allies to mitigate the impact of the new US sanctions ahead of a November 4 implementation deadline, a report says. - 8/25/18

Tehran to host international conference on information security and cryptology
The Iranian Society of Cryptology (ISC) is going to hold the 15th international conference on Information Security and Cryptology (ISC), known as ISCISC 2018, on August 28 and 29. Organized by Shahid Rajaee Teacher Training University, the event will be held with the support of the ISC. - 8/25/18

Iranian Women And Men Make History By Winning Kabaddi Gold In Asian Games
Iran won two gold medals in kabaddi on Friday at the 2018 Asian Games underway in Indonesia, bringing the nation's total gold medal count to 12. Women's kabaddi made history in the Games, beating India 27-24 in the final. Men's team, who had ended India's supremacy on Thursday, defeated South Korea 26-16 in the final to win their first ever gold medal in the Asian Games. - 8/24/18

Tehrani citizens to enjoy riding IoT-based bikes
An Iranian startup set out to provide a system based on Internet of Things (IoT) for its bike sharing service in Tehran in coming months. Tehrani citizens can enjoy cycling in different parts of the city through downloading the startup's app on their smartphone. The bikes were used for the first time by a group of Tehrani reporters, during a ceremony held by Tehran Municipality for a short biking tour on Friday - 8/24/18

Iranian Law Should Allow People With Disabilities to Make Their Own Legal Decisions
Ten years after Iran's Parliament ratified the UN's Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), the government has failed to implement effective measures to enable individuals with disabilities to make their own decisions. - 8/24/18

Iranian Sunnis Say Police Blocked Eid Prayers in Four Tehran Districts
Iran's minority Sunni Muslims say authorities of the Shiite-majority nation have prevented some Sunnis from holding communal prayers in the capital, Tehran, to mark the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha. -Michael Lipin, VOA - 8/24/18

Google Disables Dozens Of YouTube Channels Allegedly Spreading Iranian Propaganda
Google says it has disabled dozens of YouTube channels and other accounts linked to an Iranian state broadcaster that it said was running a political influence campaign. Google said on August 23 that its forensic research shows the accounts were set up by people associated with the state-run Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB). - 8/24/18

Has A Diversionary War (With Iran) Just Become More Likely?
The likely adversary of any such Trumpian war would be Iran. The administration already has an ongoing campaign of ratcheting up tension with, and hostility toward, Iran, thus laying the political and psychological groundwork for a war. The consciously elevated tension has increased the probability of incidents that could spark a war or provide an excuse for initiating one. -Paul Pillar - 8/23/18

Iran sanctions are unjust and harmful, says UN expert warning against generalized economic war
Sanctions must be just, and must not lead to the suffering of innocent people, says United Nations Special Rapporteur Idriss Jazairy. "The reimposition of sanctions against Iran after the unilateral withdrawal of the United States from the Iran nuclear deal, which had been unanimously adopted by the Security Council with the support of the US itself, lays bare the illegitimacy of this action," Mr. Jazairy observed. - 8/23/18

Too Little, Too Late: Iran Should Permanently Release Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcilffe
The Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) urges the Iranian Judiciary to turn the three-day furlough it has granted to Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe into permanent and unconditional release. "Three days of temporary release after almost three years behind bars under bogus charges is far too little and too late," said CHRI's Executive Director Hadi Ghaemi. - 8/23/18

60 European MPs Call on Iran's President Rouhani to Work For Nasrin Sotoudeh's Release
On August 22, 2018, 60 members of the European Parliament (MEP) called on Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to "do all within your power to ensure" the "unconditional release" of human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh. A 2012 recipient of the European Parliament's Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, Sotoudeh has been detained since June 13, 2018. Having formerly served three years in prison for peacefully defending her clients in the Iranian judicial system, Sotoudeh is currently facing many more years behind prison under several national security charges. - 8/23/18

Unpaid Workers Arrested at Protests Against Iran's Biggest Sugar Production Company
Haft Tappeh sugarcane company in southeastern Iran, at least five workers were charged with national security crimes, the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) has learned. The independent "Iran Kargar" website identified the workers as: Karim Alekasir, Ali Alekasir, Hamzeh Alekasir, Yahya Sa'di and Fares Sa'di. - 8/23/18

US replaced with UK in redesigning Arak heavy water reactor: Iran Nuclear Chief
The head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) says the US has been replaced with the UK in a working group tasked with redesigning the Arak heavy water reactor in central Iran. "With the unilateral US withdrawal from the JCPOA (the Iran nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action), Britain replaced the US in the group tasked with redesigning the Arak heavy water reactor," Ali Akbar Salehi told IRIB on Wednesday. - 8/23/18

British Airways To Suspend Direct Flights To Iran
British Airways says it will suspend its direct flights to Iran next month as "the operation is currently not commercially viable." The last flight from London to Tehran will be on September 22, with the return the following day, the flagship British carrier said on August 23. - 8/23/18

IRAN: Ayatollah Khamenei appoints Rear Admiral Tangsiri as new IRGC Navy chief
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has appointed Rear Admiral Alireza Tangsiri as the new commander of the Navy of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC). According to the Leader's Thursday decree, Tangsiri will take over from Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi as the new chief of the IRGC Navy. - 8/23/18

Iran, UNDP prepare draft for Conservation of Asiatic Cheetah
Iran's Department of Environment (DOE) and United Nations Development Program (UNDP) have jointly drawn up the draft of the Conservation of Asiatic Cheetah Project (CACP) phase III. Hamid Zohrabi, deputy environment chief for DOE's natural environment and biodiversity directorate said on Saturday that the project will go into effect by the end of 2018. - 8/22/18

Bolton: EU has to choose between Iran and U.S.
President Donald Trump's hawkish national security adviser says the Europeans have to make a choice between the US and Iran in observing American sanctions which he claims have been more effective than expected. - 8/22/18

Former Tehran Mayor Sentenced to Prison For Criticizing Iran's Involvement in Syrian War
Former Mayor of Tehran Gholamhossein Karbaschi has been sentenced to one year in prison for publicly criticizing Iran's involvement in the Syrian civil war, an Appeals Court ruled on August 13, 2018. At an April 2017 rally in support of President Hassan Rouhani's election campaign, Karbaschi had questioned Iran's actions in Syria during a speech in Isfahan. - 8/22/18

Iranian Newspapers Hit by Low Circulation, High Cost
Declining readership and increased printing costs are hitting Iran's newspapers hard, with two publications shutting down in the last month. The reformist daily Hambastegi (Solidarity), which is affiliated with the political party of the same name, and the conservative daily Sobh-e No (The New Morning), linked to former Tehran Mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, are the latest newspapers to cease publication. - 8/22/18

Facebook Deletes Political Misinformation Sites Linked To Iran, Russia
Facebook says it has removed 652 accounts and web pages linked to Russia and Iran for spreading political misinformation ahead of the November U.S. congressional elections. The social network said late on August 21 that it had removed the accounts from Facebook and Instagram because they engaged in "coordinated inauthentic behavior" that included the sharing of misleading political material. - 8/22/18

'Death Threat' From Iran's Religious Heartland Intensifies Debate Over Rohani Government
A perceived death threat against President Hassan Rohani within the seminary of the holy Shi'ite city of Qom has led to controversy in Iran, with some calling it a disaster for the seminary -- home to thousands of influential clerics and theology students -- and others demanding an investigation. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 8/21/18

Iran unveils first domestic fighter jet called Kowsar
Iran has unveiled its first domestically designed and manufactured fighter jet named "Kowsar" during a defense show in Tehran. The aircraft conducted its first public display flight during Tuesday's ceremony in the presence of President Hassan Rouhani, Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami and other senior military officials. - 8/21/18

Lawyer to Appeal Iranian Journalist's 10-year Sentence for Satirical Tweet
A lawyer for an Iranian journalist sentenced in Iran to 10 years in prison for allegedly insulting a historic religious figure says the ruling will be appealed because it was not handled by the appropriate court. In the tweet, which he subsequently deleted, Miresmaili mocked the Friday prayer leader of the Iranian city of Mashhad, Ayatollah Ahmad Alamolhoda, for suggesting that modern-day concerts are an insult to the teachings of Imam Reza. -Michael Lipin, VOA - 8/21/18

IRAN: President Rouhani's VP Says Corruption Has Reached Top Officials
Corruption in Iran has spread and extended to "a number of top state officials", the Islamic Republic's Vice President has declared. While visiting the government's official news agency, IRNA, Es'haq Jahangiri said on Saturday, August 18, "At a time when combatting corruption was possible, it was ignored, and some top officials were lured and drawn in." - 8/21/18

Dollar is out, Yuan is in: Iran changes benchmark currencies
Iran has removed the US Dollar from its official currency rate reporting platform and replaced it with China's Yuan in an effort that the media in Tehran say could be a key step toward ditching the greenback in trade. - 8/21/18

Mass Conviction of Sufi Protesters "Unprecedented in Iran's Judicial History"
Twenty Sufi Muslims, all members of Iran's Gonabadi Order, have been issued heavy prison sentences by the Revolutionary Court in Tehran since July 2018 for allegedly attended protests that included violent clashes with police and security forces in Tehran in February. - 8/21/18

Thousands bid farewell to legendary Iranian actor Ezzatollah Entezami
Friends and fans joined Ezzatollah Entezami's family in the courtyard of Tehran's Vahdat Hall on Saturday to attend the funeral of the legendary actor who died on Friday at the age of 94. Entezami was one of Iran's golden generation of actors such as Davud Rashidi, Mohammad-Ali Keshavarz, Ali Nasirian and Jamshid Mashyekhi, who began his career in acting with traditional Iranian performances. - 8/20/18

Iranian ships to carry message of preserving Caspian seals
Given Caspian seals, the sole marine mammals inhabiting the Caspian Sea, have fallen into a drastic decline pushing the specie towards extinction, Iranian ships in the Caspian Sea will display Caspian seal image, deputy environment chief for marine affairs has said. - 8/20/18

IRAN: Conservative MP Insinuates President Rouhani Has British Citizenship
The issue of top Iranian officials and their children who have dual citizenship has once again flared up after a conservative MP indirectly accused the Islamic Republic's President Hassan Rouhani of being a British citizen. - 8/20/18

Iran: Total has officially withdrawn from South Pars gas project
Iran's Petroleum Minister Bijan Zanganeh says French energy giant Total has officially left the country, ending speculations over whether it would stay to finish a gas project following the return of US sanctions against the Islamic Republic. - 8/20/18

Iran Appoints Nasirzadeh As Air Force Chief
Iran's supreme leader has appointed a former F-14 Tomcat pilot and veteran of the 1980s Iran-Iraq war as the new commander of the country's air force, Iranian media are reporting. Nasirzadeh has been the air force's acting commander since 2017. He succeeds General Hassan Shahsafi, who assumed the post in 2008. - 8/20/18

In Iran, Official Spin Challenges Perceived Caspian Setback
Senior Iranian officials found themselves in hot water after the recent signing of an eagerly anticipated, five-party deal on the Caspian Sea. While the so-called Convention On The Legal Status Of The Caspian Sea that was signed on August 12 appeared to postpone some of the most intense disputes between Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Turkmenistan, and Iran, it also appeared to ditch one of Tehran's strongest cards in any negotiations: the Soviet-era characterization, in multiple treaties, of the Caspian as a sea shared between two parties -- the Soviet Union and Iran. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL - 8/18/18

Prolonged Detention of Environmentalists "None of Your Business," Iran's Judiciary Tells Vice President
The chief of Iran's Department of Environment, Vice President Isa Kalantari, has told state media that the judiciary has warned him to stop enquiring about environmentalists who have been detained for the past six months. - 8/18/18

IRAN: Qom Seminarians Attack Rouhani For Economy, Nuclear Deal
A protest rally against "financial corruption" held Thursday, August 16, at Iran's major Shi'ite seminary in city of Qom, turned into a demonstration against President Hassan Rouhani. Shi'ite seminarians who receive stipends from the office of the Islamic Republic's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other conservative top clergy chanted threatening slogans aimed directly at Rouhani. - 8/18/18

Iran Blames Iraq For Continuing Wildfires On Border
Efforts to prevent wildfires in Iraq from reaching Iran, has been halted, says President Hassan Rouhani's deputy and the head of Department of Environment (DoE). Iraqi part of Hour al-Azim wetland has been burning for weeks now and the wildfire smoke clouds have caused health problems for the inhabitants of cities on the Iranian side of the border, especially in Iranian Khuzestan province and its capital Ahvaz, local news outlets reported. -Radio Farda - 8/18/18

The harsh effects of Trump's Iran sanctions, and why Iranians worry the worst is still to come
President Trump has said his goal is to place "maximum economic pressure" on a country he accuses of fomenting instability and backing U.S. adversaries across the Middle East. But many Iranians believe the Trump administration wants to topple the theocracy in place since the 1979 Islamic Revolution - a risky policy that Iran's deeply entrenched clerical establishment has many ways to survive. Meanwhile, the sanctions are falling hardest on ordinary Iranians, with the toughest restrictions yet to come. -Shashank Bengali, Los Angeles Times - 8/18/18

Iran Action Group: New US Iran Policy Chief Lays Out Agenda
The Trump administration's new special representative for Iran says his team will focus most of its work on changing Tehran's behavior on issues of nuclear weapons, terrorism and detention of Americans. Brian Hook was speaking Thursday at the State Department, where U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Hook's appointment to the role that heads a new U.S. team known as the Iran Action Group. - 8/17/18

19 University Students in Iran Issued Long Prison Sentences as One More is Tried in Tehran
At least 17 students from universities in Tehran and two others from Tabriz have been issued harsh prison sentences ranging from one to 12 years in preliminary rulings by the Revolutionary Court system for attending protests earlier this year. - 8/17/18

German firms ignore EU appeal, end Iran projects
Deutsche Telekom and Deutsche Bahn, two state-owned German companies, are following car manufacturer Daimler and mechanical engineering company Herrenknecht to withdraw from Iran because of US sanctions. The exodus flies in the face of the EU implementing a "blocking statute" which is purported to protect firms against possible fallout from breaching US sanctions on Iran. - 8/17/18

Iranian Judicial Official Refuses to Lift Ban on Twitter Despite Growing Use by State Officials
After several state officials called on President Hassan Rouhani to make Twitter accessible in Iran, a hardline judicial official has said doing so would be a "crime." In May 2018, Telecommunications Minister Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi, Education Minister Mohammad Bathaei, Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi, Justice Minister Alireza Avaie, Science Minister Mansour Gholami, Culture and Islamic Guidance Minister Abbas Salehi, as well as two Members of Parliament (MPs), Ramezanali Sobhanifar and Mohammad Kazemi, signed a letter urging Rouhani to lift the state's ban. - 8/17/18

US says ready to sanction China for buying Iran's oil
The United States says it is prepared to impose sanctions on all countries that continue to buy Iran's oil -- including China -- after Washington starts restoring bans on the Islamic Republic's energy sector. The announcement was made on Thursday by Brian Hook, the head of US State Department's newly-established Iran Action Group, after he was asked by reporters about the group's plan for dealing with China - 8/17/18

The Book of Kings: The book that defines Iranians
Completed by Abolqasem Ferdowsi in the early 11th Century, the Shahnameh (Book of Kings) is not only a literary masterpiece, but also a book that has for centuries helped define Iran and the Iranian peoples, as well as safeguard the existence of the Persian language. -Joobin Bekhrad, BBC - 8/17/18

Iran's President Rouhani Defends Caspian Sea Convention, Saying No Sell-Out
President Hassan Rouhani and his cabinet members lined up on Wednesday to defend a Convention signed by the littoral states of the Caspian Sea. Responding to reports and speculations that question the possible benefits and advantages of the convention for Iran, Rouhani and his ministers tried to draw a rosy picture out of the treaty, presenting it as a "great national achievement" for the Islamic Republic. - 8/16/18

Meybod, Iran: Open-air museum of ancient watermills
Some 50 kilometers north of Yazd, central Iran, lies the sprawling mud-brick city of Meybod, whose tourism officials are planning to internationally promote it as the "city of watermills". Meybod seeks UNESCO status for long being a cradle of watermills and for its cultural evolution of water supply through the millennia, ISNA reported. - 8/16/18

Nasrin Sotoudeh's Lawyer: "They Came After Her From Three Directions"
Iranian human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh once defended political prisoners but she is now trying to avoid becoming one herself as she wades through the complicated case Iran's judiciary has built against her. Sotoudeh was caught off guard when she was suddenly transported from her home to Evin Prison in Tehran on June 13, 2018. Later she was informed that she was detained due to a five-year prison sentence that was issued against her in absentia in 2015 by Revolutionary Court Judge Mohammad Moghiseh. - 8/16/18

Iranian Minister Shocked By $250 Billion Of Import Requests
Iran's Minister of Industry, Mines and Business says, fluctuations in the local forex market in the past four months have tripled the number of applications for import licenses worth $250 billion dollar. Describing the figure as "unbelievable", Mohammad Shariatmadari has insisted that a "number of" profiteering individuals are trying to "fish in troubled waters", referring to the current currency and economic crisis. - 8/16/18

Where Is Your Kid? Iranians On Social Media Target Nepotism
A newly launched social media campaign is pressuring Iranian officials to come clean about potential privileges their children enjoy due to their influence and connections. The campaign, under the hashtag #Where_is_your_kid?, follows reports of the children of Iranian politicians being promoted to top state jobs despite a lack of experience and living "luxury" lifestyles at a time when many Iranians are struggling to make ends meet due to a plunging national currency and concerns over newly reimposed U.S. sanctions that are likely to make their lives even more difficult. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 8/16/18

Tehran's Armenian archbishop denounces Trump's JCPOA exit
Sebouh Sarkissian, the Armenian archbishop of Tehran, has condemned Donald Trump's behavior toward Iran including his exit from the 2015 nuclear agreement that Tehran signed with the 5+1 nations, ISNA reported on Wednesday. - 8/16/18

As Currency Drops Iran Faces Shortages Of Medications
Iran's health ministry spokesman has admitted that the country is currently suffering from shortages of foreign-made medications, but, insisted that "it can be overcome". Blaming chaotic fluctuations in Iranian forex market and nosediving national currency, Iraj Harirchi says, "Since forty-fifty types of foreign medications have recently become scarce in Iran, the government has allocated $3.5 billion to purchase drugs." - 8/15/18

US to blame for burning bridges with Iran: President Rouhani
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has once again dismissed Washington's offer of talks, which followed its unilateral withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal, saying the US, itself, burned its bridges for negotiations with Tehran. Currently, the Islamic Republic is holding talks with the entire world, the Iranian chief executive told a government meeting on Wednesday. Rouhani, however, said, "The US itself has acted in such a way that has destroyed the circumstances required for negotiations. It has burned its bridges." - 8/15/18

Vets Unable To Save Asiatic Cheetah Cub Injured In Car Crash In Semnan, Iran
The Asiatic cheetah cub which had been injured on August 7 in a car crash on Abbasabad-Mayami road, north-central Semnan province, has lost life despite the efforts of the veterinary team at the Department of Environment, IRNA reported on Wednesday. - 8/15/18

Economic Crisis In Iran Leading To Job Cuts And Inflation
Iranian Auto parts manufacturers says 450 thousand workers in this industry are likely to lose their jobs as a result of Iran's foreign currency crisis. At the same time, Iranian media report that rising prices of foodstuff and cost of housing on a daily basis make life harder for most Iranians. - 8/15/18

UK's Quercus halts Iran solar project after US threat
UK renewables investor Quercus has halted a deal worth over half a billion euros to build and operate a 600-megawatt (MW) solar farm in Iran, the company said on Tuesday. "Following the US sanctions on Iran, we have decided to cease all activities in the country, including our 600 MW project. We will continue to monitor the situation closely," Quercus chief executive Diego Biasi was quoted as saying. - 8/15/18

Judiciary's Intensifying Crackdown on Defense Attorneys in Iran Must End
An intensifying state crackdown on human rights defenders in Iran, in which the authorities have denied attorneys the ability to represent their clients and jailed them for attempting to do so, violates Iran's domestic laws and international obligations and must end, the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) said in a statement today. - 8/14/18

Will Iran Benefit from Lack of Coordination in Trump Administration's Multiple Sanctions?
If assuring the success of the economic sanctions against Iran is one of Trump administration's top foreign policy priorities then there must be a good explanation for why it is simultaneously engaging in trade wars and imposing sanctions on some of Iran's major trade partners. Does U.S. expect Turkey, Russia and China to cooperate with U.S. sanctions and cut back their economic ties with Iran while they are themselves being punished by tariffs and economic sanctions for various reasons? -Nader Habibi - 8/14/18

IRAN: Khamenei Blames President Rouhani For Economic Crisis, Forbids Negotiating With U.S.
At the same time he ruled out a military confrontation with the U.S. "Recently, American officials have been talking blatantly about Iran ... they are talking about war and negotiations ... They are exaggerating about possibility of a war with Iran. There will be no war ... We have never started a war and they will not confront Iran militarily," Khamenei retorted. - 8/14/18

Iran Offers Oil Discounts To Keep Asian Customers
An official at the state-run National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) has told state-run news agency, IRNA, that the company was reducing its prices for September sales to Asia to their lowest level in 14 years, compared with Saudi crude. The discount has been offered at a time that the second batch of renewed US sanctions, targeting Iran's oil exports, is scheduled to be implemented on November 4. - 8/14/18

Tourism Projects Worth $10B Underway In Iran
Some 1,884 tourism projects valued at 430 trillion rials (nearly $10.2 billion) are underway in Iran, tourism chief Ali-Asghar Mounesan said on Sunday. Projects including construction of hotels and eco-lodges as well as projects aiming at attracting tourists are already underway and herald good days for tourism industry of the country, CHTN quoted Mounesan as saying. - 8/14/18

Iran unveils new generation of precision-guided 'Mobin' missiles
Iran has unveiled a new generation of precision-guided missiles capable of striking ground and seaborne targets in surgical operations. The Fateh-e Mobin missile was showcased and entered the production line on Monday in the presence of Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami. - 8/14/18

Iraq will not abide by US sanctions against Iran: Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi says his government will only refrain from using the dollar in transactions with Iran without complying with the full scope of US sanctions against the Islamic Republic. "Our commitment in the Iran issue is to not use the dollar currency in transaction, not abiding by the US sanctions," state television quoted the premier as telling a news conference in Baghdad on Monday. - 8/14/18

Caspian Sea Countries Summit Delivers Less Than Expected
The leaders of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan met in Aqtau, Kazakhstan, on August 12 for what was supposed to be the long-awaited signing of a convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea. The leaders met, and signed the convention, but after more than 20 years it was clear that some of the same issues that have prevented an agreement that suited all five countries remained. -Bruce Pannier, RFE/RL - 8/13/18

Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei: No negotiations with cheating, bullying U.S.
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says the Islamic Republic will not enter into new negotiations with the United States due to cheating and bullying nature of its government. Speaking in a meeting with a large group of Iranian people in Tehran on Monday, Ayatollah Khamenei dismissed talks with the US after President Trump called for direct negotiations with Tehran, saying Washington is only after concessions. - 8/13/18

Iran Arrests 67 People In Drive Against Financial Crime
Iran's judiciary says the authorities have arrested 67 people in a drive against financial crime as the country faces renewed U.S. sanctions and public outcry against widespread corruption. "Sixty seven suspects have been arrested, some of whom were released on bail, and more than 100 people including government employees and officials, as well as private employees and others have been given travel bans," judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei said in remarks carried by state television on August 12. - 8/13/18

Iranian Film Festival, San Francisco: September 22-23, 2018
Iranian Film Festival - San Francisco, the first independent Iranian film festival outside of Iran, which showcases independent feature and short films made by or about Iranians from around the world, will present 48 films at its 11th annual event September 22-23, 2018. The films range from fiction, documentary, animation, short....to music video. - 8/13/18

German Economy Minister: US cannot tell us with whom we can do business
Germany's Economy Minister Peter Altmaier says the United States is in no position to tell Berlin with which countries it can do business, vowing support for companies doing business with Iran. The German minister made the remarks in an interview with Bild am Sonntagnewspaper on Sunday, emphasizing that Berlin would not let the Washington dictate its trade rules on it. - 8/13/18

Iran's Guardians Council Approves Anti-Money-Laundering Measures
A top Iranian constitutional body has approved measures passed by parliament to bring the country more into line with international anti-money-laundering norms. The Guardians Council, which vets legislation passed by parliament, gave its approval to the legal amendments on combating the funding of terrorism, the body's spokesman, Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei, was quoted as saying by Iranian state media. - 8/13/18

Trump's Sanctions Will Hurt The Wrong People In Iran
In August 2013, a group of 466 Iranian dissidents, including dozens of political prisoners, wrote a letter to President Barack Obama chastising him for his Iran policy. The unprecedented sanctions Obama had mustered against Iran, they argued, were not only debilitating the Iranian economy but suffocating Iranian civil society and prospects for peaceful democratic change within the country. - Jamal Abdi and Sina Toossi, NIAC - 8/11/18

Iran's Currency Starts The Week With Another Decline Against Dollar
The Iranian currency started the new Iranian week on Saturday with another decline, trading above 10,500 rials to the dollar. This is another indication that the new foreign currency market policy of the government has failed to stop the rapid decline of the rial. - 8/11/18

Iranian FM Says No Meeting With U.S. Officials Planned
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says no meetings are planned with U.S. officials, including U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Asked about the likelihood of such a such meeting, possibly on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly, Zarif told the semiofficial Tasnim news agency that "no such meeting is planned." - 8/11/18

Iranian Football Fans Clash With Police In Tehran, Crowds Chant Opposition Slogans
Reports from Iran indicate an "intense clash" between security forces and angry fans attending a football match in Tehran on Friday. Reports from Tehran also say thousands of football fans at Tehran's Azadi Stadium chanted anti-government slogans in the course of the clash which appeared to be not politically motivated in the first place. - 8/11/18

How US Sanctions Impede the Women's Movement in Iran
While the world's attention was on US President Donald Trump's Twitter war with Tehran the other week, some good news in Iran escaped notice. A group of women's rights activists arrested in front of the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs on International Women's Day were acquitted, after initially being charged for planning and participating in a protest on the economic situation of women. -Sussan Tahmasebi, Atlantic Council - 8/11/18

Turkish Currency Lira Plunges As Trump Piles On The Pressure
The embattled Turkish lira tumbled almost 20 percent to new record lows against the dollar on Friday as strains with the United States intensified, but President Recep Tayyip Erdogan defiantly proclaimed Turkey would emerge victorious in an "economic war". - 8/11/18

A Landmark Caspian Agreement (To Be Signed On August 12) -- And What It Resolves
It has taken more than 20 years. But on August 12, the leaders of Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan will meet in the Kazakh port city of Aqtau, reportedly to sign a new convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea. Iran is arguably the loser under such an arrangement, as it would get only about 13 percent of the Caspian -- and the deepest and saltiest part at that. -Bruce Pannier, RFE/RL - 8/10/18

Iran's State TV Must End Its Use of Families to Discredit Journalists, Dissenters
Iranian authorities should immediately stop harassing and threatening the families of activists and journalists as a means to silence dissent and criticism, Human Rights Watch (HRW), the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI) and Justice for Iran (JFI) said in a joint statement today. - 8/10/18

Iran's Water Can Run Out Sooner Than Its Oil
The looming water crisis in Iran is "much more severe" than what has already been predicted, the head of Islamic Republic's Department of Environment (DoE) and deputy President, Isa Kalantari has said, warning, "There will be no water in Iran within less than fifty years". - 8/10/18

IRAN: Local Authorities Say They Will Investigate Shooting Death of Protester in Karaj
A judicial investigation is underway in Iran to determine how 26-year-old shopkeeper Reza Otadi died from a bullet wound during a protest rally near Tehran on August 3, 2018, according to local officials. Iranian authorities typically blame the deaths of protesters on alleged bad actors among the protesters or suicide while pressuring the victim's family to avoid speaking publicly about the case. - 8/10/18

Former Iranian President Ahmadinejad Calls On Rouhani And Others To Step Down
Former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has once again called upon the heads of the Islamic Republic's three branches of government to step down. In a video message posted on his Telegram Channel, hardliner former President tells his "moderate" successor, Hassan Rouhani, that people do not "accept" him anymore and the continuation of his presidency will be detrimental to the country, as well as to himself. - 8/10/18

Iranian Currency Nosedives As New Forex Policy Seems Ineffective
Only days after the announcement of President Hassan Rouhani's new forex policy, the value of Iranian national currency rial nosedived once again on the country's open market. While the dollar surpassed 10,000 rials, the private forex market is struggling with unexpected fluctuations, specifically over the value of the dollar, reports say. - 8/9/18

Iran hints trade guarantees from Europe are coming
Iran says it will in all likelihood receive the necessary trade and banking guarantees from Europe to sustain a 2015 nuclear deal, which the United States has withdrawn from and which Washington has been attempting to break up.Iran says it will in all likelihood receive the necessary trade and banking guarantees from Europe to sustain a 2015 nuclear deal, which the United States has withdrawn from and which Washington has been attempting to break up. - 8/9/18

Iran's Child Protection Bill Includes Kids With Disabilities But Fails to Close Legal Loopholes
A bill in the final stages of Iran's legislative process addresses the country's legal vacuum regarding the abuse of children with disabilities but includes loopholes that put those children at risk, according to experts. - 8/9/18

Iranian Minister, MPs Trade Charges of Corruption, Blackmail During Impeachment
Debates at the Iranian parliament (Majles) on Wednesday August 8 shed light on a web of alleged corruption, blackmailing, embezzlement, bribery and mishandling of public funds, Iranian press and social media activists say. - 8/9/18

With 450,000 foreign nationals, Iran among top host countries for refugee students: Official
Over the past 4 decades Iran has been faced with crowds of refugees due to the wars and conflicts in the region and currently Iran is among the countries with the highest refugee population and refugee students, deputy for international affairs department of the Ministry of Education said. There are some 450,000 foreign national students studying at schools in Iran of which 420,000 are Afghan nationals, Gholamreza Karimi told in an interview with the Tehran Times and Mehr news agency. - 8/9/18

Iran, Iraq, Syria to join hands against Sand and Dust Storms (SDS)
A plan on combating sand and dust storms (SDS) is scheduled to be prepared in a collaborative initiative with three countries of Iran, Iraq and Syria under the auspices of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the current Iranian calendar year (ending on March 20, 2019), head of national working group on SDS has said. - 8/9/18

Can EU's Efforts Protect European Companies Dealing With Iran?
Following the re-imposition of United States' sanctions against Iran on August 7, the US has been adamant to exert its utmost pressures on Tehran to enter comprehensive negotiations with Washington, while the EU has been following measures to salvage the Iran nuclear deal US pulled out of in May. - 8/9/18

French cows herded out of Iran by U.S. sanctions, Senator says
A project to export cattle to Iran from Normandy in northern France has been halted due to the United States' renewed sanctions against Tehran, a French Senator said, as Washington's policy takes its toll on its European allies. -Reuters - 8/9/18

China, Russia defend trade ties with Iran after US sanctions
China and Russia have repudiated new US sanctions on Iran, pledging to maintain trade ties with Tehran after President Donald Trump warned countries against doing business with the Islamic Republic. "China has consistently opposed unilateral sanctions and long-armed jurisdiction," the Chinese Foreign Ministry said Wednesday, addressing Trump's decision Monday to reimpose sanctions on Tehran. - 8/8/18

Sanctions Buster? Iran Eyes Cryptocurrency To Blunt U.S. Deterrents
With real-world problems sparking a "death spiral" for the rial currency, Iran's government is turning toward the cyberworld to help skirt U.S. sanctions that will further tighten the economic screws on Tehran. The underlying blockchain technology used in digital currencies eliminates the need for a third party, thus allowing for transactions to be made quickly, irrevocably, and in a secure environment. - 8/8/18

German Auto Giant Daimler Quits Iran, Citing U.S. Sanctions Threat
German auto giant Daimler halted its business activities in Iran hours after U.S. President Donald Trump vowed to block any company operating in Iran from selling in the vast U.S. marketplace. "We have suspended our already limited activities in Iran in accordance with the applicable sanctions," a Daimler spokeswoman said on August 7. - 8/8/18

Outspoken Iranian MP Demands Explanation On Judiciary's Funds
Outspoken Tehran MP Mahmoud Sadeghi has said that a number of employees of Iran's General Inspection Organization (GIO) have been arrested for "accidentally" auditing bank accounts of the Justice Department. "The lack of transparency in the state-run departments' interaction with the people has created a rift between the nation and the ruling establishment and led to decreasing the public trust in the regime to its lowest level," Sadeghi said. - 8/8/18

Iran's labor minister removed from office after impeachment
Iranian Minister of Cooperatives, Labor and Social Welfare Ali Rabiei has been removed from office after he failed to secure a vote of confidence during an impeachment process at the parliament. At a parliamentary session in Tehran on Wednesday, 129 lawmakers voted for Rabiei to leave the cabinet, 111 for him to remain in office and 3 abstained. - 8/8/18

Trump Reimposes Iranian Economic Sanctions
The United States has reimposed economic sanctions on Iran that were originally put in place to pressure the country to limit its nuclear program and later lifted under a 2015 international agreement. President Donald Trump has been a frequent critic of that deal and withdrew the United States from the agreement three months ago, setting in motion the reimposition of the sanctions effective at midnight Monday. -VOA - 8/7/18

Lawyer Calls on Iran's President Rouhani to Work For Human Rights Attorney Abdolfattah Soltani's Release
One of Iran's most prominent human rights lawyers, Abdolfattah Soltani, was granted furlough from Evin Prison to mourn his daughter's death on August 4, 2018. Soltani's 30-year-old daughter, Homa, had passed away on August 3 from a heart attack. Video clips posted on social media showed the moment Soltani was reunited with his remaining family at a mourning ceremony for his daughter. One clip shows Soltani breaking down into tears as he embraces his wife, Masoumeh Dehghan, who is wailing. - 8/7/18

IRAN: Hardliner Body Calls For Extensive Changes in Rouhani's Cabinet
Iran's hardline-dominated Assembly of Experts has called on President Hassan Rouhani to be accountable for Iran's "chaotic economic situation," and demanded extensive overhaul of his cabinet. In Iran's worsening economic situation, hardliners have been increasingly putting the blame on Rouhani, demanding action. -Radio Farda - 8/7/18

Labor Minister Says Unemployment Will Skyrocket In Iran
As the first round of reimposed U.S. sanctions against Iran takes effect, the Iranian economy is taking a beating, and Iran's leaders are expressing concern about maintaining social cohesion in the face of increasing economic pressures. Iran's Minister of Cooperatives, Labor, and Social Welfare, Ali Rabiei, has predicted the country will lose one million jobs by the end of the current Persian year on March 20, 2019. - 8/7/18

Iran unveils new currency policies to strengthen rial
As the United States is preparing for the snapback of economic sanctions against Iran, the country has unveiled a much-awaited package of policies that it expects to help strengthen its national currency - the rial - which has lost nearly half of its value against the US dollar since the start of the year. - 8/6/18

Iran receives 5 ATR planes from France shortly before US sanctions return
Iran has received five more ATR turboprop airplanes only a day before the return of US sanctions that have already torpedoed the country's plane purchases with other major providers. The planes that had left France's Toulouse earlier in the day landed in Tehran's International Mehrabad Airport on Sunday morning after a short stop for refueling in the northwestern city of Urmia. - 8/6/18

Iranian-American woman Shabnam Lotfi running for Wisconsin's 77th District State Assembly
The Iranian American Political Action Committee (IAPAC), the connected PAC of PAAIA, has announced its endorsement of Shabnam Lofti for Wisconsin's 77th District State Assembly. If elected, she would be the first Iranian American to serve in the Wisconsin Legislature. - 8/6/18

Prominent Imprisoned Iranian Lawyer Furloughed After Young Daughter Dies
One of the founders of "Defenders of Human Rights Center" in Iran, Abdolfattah Soltani has been granted furlough to attend her young daughter's funeral, Saturday, August 4. Soltani's 27-year old daughter, Homa, died of heart failure on Friday evening. - 8/6/18

The Islamic Republic 'Not Going To Collapse', Says Former Iranian President Khatami
Former reformist President Mohammad Khatami has apologized to Iranians for "the country's current situation," however, he stressed that the Islamic Republic "is not on the verge of collapse." In a statement released on his website on Sunday August 5, Khatami said that the suggestion of the regime being on the verge of collapse is part of a psychological offensive, alluding to what the regime calls "foreign enemies". - 8/6/18

Germany Upholds Guarantees For Iran Business Despite U.S. Sanctions
As the United States is gearing up to make an important announcement on the reimposition of sanctions against Iran on August 6, Germany has signalled it will support companies who do business with the country. - 8/6/18

Celebration of Iranian Cinema at UCI-2018
Join us for the 3rd Annual CELEBRATION OF IRANIAN CINEMA in Orange County at the University of California, Irvine September 15-16, 2018. In collaboration with the Jordan Center for Persian Studies, UCI. Special thanks to our co presenter: The UCLA Film & Televisions Archives. - 8/6/18

Iran Central Bank Deputy Chief Detained Ahead Of Reimposed U.S. Sanctions
Iranian authorities have detained a deputy Central Bank governor amid street protests over the country's economic difficulties, state-run media report, as Iran prepares to face a return of U.S. sanctions that were lifted under the 2015 nuclear deal. A spokesman for the judiciary was quoted as saying on August 5 that Ahmad Araqchi was dismissed from the post the previous day before being detained for alleged economic crimes. - 8/6/18

Iran's New foreign currencies policy aimed at providing essential goods at official rate: Official
Iran's First Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri says the government will announce on Monday its new Forex policy in the face of the looming US sanctions. "Given the new economic situation in the country and due to the looming US sanctions on Iran, our economy is in dire need of new decisions and amendment of earlier policies," he said. Iran's first vice president then said the new policies are mainly aimed at providing the essential goods at the official rate - 8/4/18

"IRGC Should Obey The Establishment's Decision" Says Iranian MP Motahari On Negotiations with U.S.
Tehran's outspoken MP, Ali Motahari, has lambasted the chief commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) for recent comments on the possibility of Tehran-Washington rapprochement. "On issues like negotiating with the United States, the IRGC should obey the establishment's decision," Motahari said on August 2. - 8/4/18

Desperate Families Call on Iranian State Heads to Release Detained Environmentalists
The families of environmentalists who have been detained in Iran for the past six months-many in solitary confinement and without counsel-have sent a letter to the three heads of state advocating for the detainees' release. "It has been six months since the arrests of our loved ones who are known as some of the best and most respected environmentalists in Iran. These six months have been full of hardship, apprehension and anxiety for them and us. Six months without the liberty to make phone calls or have visitations...." - 8/4/18

Navy Chief to VOA: US Closely Watching Iran's Exercises in Persian Gulf
The United States is closely watching Iranian naval exercises in the Persian Gulf and will maintain freedom of navigation through a strategic waterway that Iran has threatened to block, the head of the Navy told VOA on Thursday. -Carla Babb, VOA - 8/4/18

Iran Imams Shun Negotiations With U.S.; Diplomats Disagree
Friday Prayer leaders in Tehran and other cities have expressed their opposition to negotiating with the United States, a topic that has stirred controversy in Iran since U.S.President Donald Trump said last week that he was prepared to talk with his Iranian counterpart, President Hassan Rouhani, "without any preconditions" to solve problems in their relations. - 8/4/18

Iranian Human Rights Lawyer Facing Prison Time For Criticizing Judiciary
Iranian attorney Mostafa Tork Hamadani has been charged for criticizing the judiciary for barring him and other defense lawyers from defending environmentalists who were arrested by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC). Hamadani, who has taken on several human rights cases throughout his career, tweeted a copy of his summons document on July 26, 2018 - 8/3/18

Iran's Foreign Minister: US 'doesn't know what it's doing in our backyard'
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has criticized the presence of American military forces in the Persian Gulf and has questioned why US forces are "in Iran's backyard" some 7,000 miles away from home. Zarif took to Twitter on Thursday to slam the US navy for using the fictitious name of "the Arabian Gulf" to refer to the Persian Gulf. - 8/3/18

In blow to Trump, China rejects US request to cut Iran oil imports
China has rejected a US demand to cut Iranian oil imports despite Washington's attempts to bring down the Islamic Republic's oil sales to zero, Bloomberg reports. The financial news provider quoted informed officials on Friday as saying that the US had been unable to persuade China to cut Iranian oil imports and that Beijing's purchases from Tehran last month remained unchanged. - 8/3/18

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Apeals To Donald Trump For Information On Iranian Green Card Holders
Former Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has called upon U.S. President Donald Trump to release the names of top Iranian officials' relatives who live in the United States or hold green cards. In a tweet directly addressed to Trump, Ahmadinejad wrote on August 1, "Mr. Donald Trump; release the list of relatives of Iranian Government officials that (sic) have Green Cards and bank accounts in the United States; if you have such a list." - 8/3/18

Migrant: Photo Essay by Alain Trouilly
In my library I have an old Russian Camera. It is an old gift my father gave me when I graduated from high school. Thus, began my lifelong passion for photography. On a shelf nearby is a book written by my father curiously titled: "Migrants in transit". The book chronicles the 1939 exodus of the people of Lorraine (a French province on the German border) fleeing the invading German Army. The story is told through the eyes of an 11-year-old child. His eyes. - 8/2/18

IRAN: Unrest Spreads To Shiraz, Mashhad; Slogans Focus On Dictatorship
A new round of anti-government demonstrations has been taking place in major Iranian cities for the third day on August 2, with demonstrators chanting slogans against the dictatorship, clerical rule, and Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Demonstrators also called for the release of political prisoners. -Radio Farda - 8/2/18

Iran's Foreign Minister says US can blame itself for leaving deal and halting talks
"Iran & US had 2 yrs of talks. With EU/E3+Russia+China, we produced a unique multilateral accord-the JCPOA. It's been working. US can only blame itself for pulling out & leaving the table. Threats, sanctions & PR stunts won't work. Try respect: for Iranians & for int'l commitments," said Zarif on Twitter on Tuesday. - 8/2/18

In The Haute Seat: Glimpse Into Lifestyles Of Iran's Elite Kids Spurs Anger
A glimpse into the conspicuous "luxury" of the wedding of an Iranian ambassador's son has rekindled public criticism of the high times enjoyed by children of Iran's elite while many of the country's 82 million people face acute economic pressure. The atmosphere was already fraught before the recent emergence of the wedding of Amir Mohsen Moradian, the son of Tehran's ambassador to Denmark, and Anashid Hosseini, an Iranian fashion model and designer -- reportedly in the summer of 2017 at a salon advertised as one of the capital's "most luxurious and beautiful" venues, in the upscale Shahrak Gharb neighborhood. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 8/2/18

Kurdish-Iranian Refugee Wins Fields Prize For Mathematics
A Kurdish-Iranian refugee who became a Cambridge University professor was among four winners of the prestigious Fields prize for mathematics, but his gold medal was stolen minutes after he received it. Caucher Birkar, a 40-year-old specialist in algebraic geometry, reported his briefcase missing less than an hour after he was handed his 14-karat gold medal on August 1 in Rio de Janeiro. - 8/2/18

Protests Continue In Karaj, Near Tehran - Clashes With Security Forces
For the second consecutive evening on Wednesday August 1, people in Gohardasht, in Karaj region, west of Tehran protested against rising prices and economic hardship, amid clashes with security forces. - 8/2/18

South Africa's MTN faces Iran crossroads as US sanctions loom
South Africa's MTN Group is reported to have put on hold a $750 million expansion plan in the Iranian broadband market in the face of US sanctions which are about to take effect on Monday. Africa's biggest wireless networks group, which has a 49 percent stake in national operator Irancell, had agreed last year to invest in fixed line broadband network, Iranian Net. - 8/2/18

Iranian Officials Rebuff Trump's Offer Of Talks, Say Actions At Odds With Words
Iranian officials have sharply rebuffed U.S. President Donald Trump's offer to meet with his Iranian counterpart to discuss ways of improving ties between the two countries, saying such talks would have "no value" and be a "humiliation." Trump said on July 30 he would be willing to meet President Hassan Rohani with "no preconditions," "anytime," even as U.S. and Iranian officials have been escalating their rhetoric following Washington's withdrawal in May from the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers. - 8/1/18

Trump's War Hysteria Against Iran Ignores Middle East Realities
By threatening a devastating war against Iran, President Donald Trump's recent response to Iran's President Hassan Rouhani's benign statement about "the mother of all peace" and "the mother of all war" is another example of erratic and dangerous foreign policy pronouncements. Trump tweeted in capital letters that Iran "will suffer consequences the likes of which few throughout history have ever suffered before." -Emile Nakhleh - 8/1/18

Talking to Iran's Rouhani: Is Trump shooting from the hip or following a script?
Message to Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Tel Aviv: Not to worry, US President Donald J. Trump has no intention of meeting his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani, unconditionally. On the contrary, Mr. Trump's surprise announcement that he is willing to talk to Mr. Rouhani is likely part of a plan formulated almost a year before he returned to government service by his national security advisor John R. Bolton. -James M. Dorsey - 8/1/18

IRAN: Detention Order For Human Rights Lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh Extended Under Two National Security Charges
Iran's judiciary has extended the detention of prominent human rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, who is facing two national security charges for peacefully engaging in her profession. "When her one-month detention order expired, they extended it for another month after a 10-day delay," her husband Reza Khandan told the state-funded Iranian Students News Agency on July 30, 2018. - 8/1/18

Iran Parliament To Question President Rouhani Over Economic Crisis Response
Eighty members of the Iranian Parliament tabled a motion on August 1 to question President Hassan Rouhani about his administration's economic policy and its reactions to the country's ongoing economic crisis. Iranian media noted that 80 MPs comprise more than a quarter of the total number of deputies in the parliament. - 8/1/18

Hundreds Protest Currency Slump in Central Iranian City Of Isfahan
Hundreds of Iranians joined a street protest Tuesday in the central city of Isfahan to denounce the government's handling of economic problems, including the record low value of Iran's currency. Images verified by VOA Persian and sent by Isfahan residents showed protesters marching and chanting anti-government slogans in the city's New Shapur district. -Michael Lipin, VOA - 8/1/18

Conflicting Reports on Iranian Opposition Leaders' Freedom From House Arrest
A member of Iran's Parliament has denied reports that the country's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) has ruled to end the seven-year-long house arrests of political opposition leaders Mehdi Karroubi, Mir Hossein Mousavi, and Zahra Rahnavard. - 8/1/18
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