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Eighteen Nobel Laureates Call for Immediate Release of Iranian Physicist
The Iranian Judiciary should immediately release the Iranian physicist and prisoner of conscience, Omid Kokabee, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran said today. On September 26, 2014, in an open letter to Iran's Leader, Ali Khamenei, eighteen physics Nobel laureates called for the "immediate and unconditional" release of Kokabee. The letter was published in the leading scientific journal Nature. - 9/30/14

The Real Barriers to a Final Nuclear Deal with Iran
Another round of negotiations between world powers and Iran on its nuclear program ended without any agreement in sight last week in New York. Many causes for the failure to reach an agreement have been cited, including: the number of centrifuges Iran should be allowed to keep; the still ambiguous status of the Arak heavy water reactor... -Shireen T. Hunter, LobeLog - 9/30/14

Asian Games: Iran reaches fifth place with ten gold medals
On the tenth day of the Asian Games the Iranian caravan won three more gold medals in freestyle wrestling giving Iran a total of ten gold, three silver and two bronze medals, placing Iran in the fifth place in the medals chart. - 9/30/14

Iranian facebook users call for mercy in appeals court
The lawyer for a number of Facebook users who were arrested by Iranian authorities for their cyber activities reported on Monday September 29 that his clients have "accepted some of their mistakes and expressed remorse" in the appeals court. - 9/30/14

Museum Cleansing Targets Work of Iranian Sculptor, Parviz Tanavoli
Tehran Municipality has announced that it is looking at "cleansing" its museums, and there is some concern among Iranian artists that the city is considering auctioning off the works of prominent sculptor Parviz Tanavoli. - 9/30/14

Top US Official: Nuclear Deal Could Improve Ties, Onus on Iran
A top advisor to President Obama said that a deal over Iran's nuclear program could lead to a new era of relations. "A nuclear agreement could begin a multi-generational process that could lead to a new relationship between our countries," said Phil Gordon, the White House Coordinator for the Middle East, North Africa, and the Gulf Region, in a speech Saturday to the National Iranian American Council (NIAC). -Derek Davison, LobeLog - 9/30/14

Iran: Netanyahu Speech 'Baselessly' Associates Islamic State, Islamic World
Iran says Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "baselessly" associated the Islamic world with the Islamic State group during his address to the United Nations General Assembly. In a reply to the Monday speech, Iran also said Netanyahu continued a policy to "sabotage and disrupt" Iranian negotiations with world powers over the country's nuclear program. - 9/30/14

Iran: Woman arrested at volleyball game now charged
Ghoncheh Qavami, the Iranian woman who was detained three months ago for trying to enter a stadium to watch a volleyball game, has been charged with "propaganda against the regime." Qavami's lawyer told Iranian media that his client has pleaded not guilty and will present her defence at trial. - 9/30/14

Caspian Sea littoral states end summit signing 3 accords
The fourth Summit of the Caspian Sea littoral states ended in the Russian port city of Astrakhan on Sunday after signing three agreements and releasing a joint statement. The day-long summit was attended by heads of state from Iran, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan who discussed legal status of the world's largest lake. - 9/30/14

Iran To Help Lebanon Army Fight Extremists
A senior Iranian official has said that Tehran will supply the Lebanese army with military equipment to be used in fighting Muslim extremist groups. The Lebanese army has been fighting Sunni militants near the border with Syria for the past two months. - 9/30/14

Iranian Woman Kayaker Arezo Hakimi Shines At Asian Games 2014
An Iranian female athlete bagged silver medal of women's kayak single 200m on Monday at the Asian Games 2014 in Incheon, South Korea. Arezo Hakimi managed to clock 47.807 sec to win the third title. The Kazakh and Chinese athletes ranked first and second respectively. - 9/29/14

Caspian Sea Summit Kicks Off In Russia
The Caspian Sea summit has opened in the Russian city of Astrakhan with the sea's five littoral states seeking an agreement on who owns which parts of the Caspian and therefore access to valuable oil and gas reserves. - 9/29/14

The threat of ISIS should be taken seriously
When all of a sudden ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Sham) emerged on the scene, and in a matter of days occupied large swathes of mainly Sunni-inhabited parts of Iraq and Syria, including Iraq's second city Mosul and Saddam Hussein's birthplace Tikrit and called itself the Islamic State, many people, not least Western politicians and intelligence services, were taken by surprise. -Farhang Jahanpour - 9/29/14

Documentary film charts Iranian Baha'is' peaceful response to oppression
A powerful new documentary film, telling the story of the Baha'is of Iran and their peaceful response to decades of state-sponsored persecution, had its UK premiere on 12 September. The film has been made by acclaimed journalist and filmmaker Maziar Bahari. He was Newsweek's Iran reporter from 1998 to 2011 and has produced a number of other documentary films about Iran. - 9/29/14

Iran ranks 2nd in medicine consumption in Asia
Iran ranks second after China in terms of medicine consumption in Asia, an official at the Faculty of Pharmacy of the Tehran University of Medical Sciences said on Monday. - 9/29/14

Iran's Non-Oil Trade Up 44 Percent In 6 Months
Iran's total non-oil trade hit $49.69 billion in the first half of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21-September 22), a 44 percent rise compared to the same period in the previous year. - 9/29/14

Iranian Women Unemployment Rate at 43.4 Percent
Women's unemployment rate in the last eight years reached 43.4 percent, according to the latest report released by the Statistical Center of Iran. Although it has been years since women are working outside home, job opportunities for women have been restricted by the male-dominated society and unjust competition. - 9/28/14

To The Bone: A Solo Painting Exhibition by Leila Ghandchi
Leila Ghandchi is not a feminist activist, however she is ready to saddle up her Unicorn and confront the dominating powers in quest for a sliver of joy. This is the buzz of a young confident generation of female Iranian artists who will not easily surrender their individuality and are not ready to be the sacrificial lamb. - 9/28/14

Number of transit flights through Iranian space unprecedented
Presently 900 foreign plane have transit flights trough the Iranian air space, which is unprecedented in the history of the Iranian aviation, said the Managing Director of Iranian Airports Company Mohammad Ali Ilkhani. - 9/28/14

Idaho Cities, Towns Hold Vigil For Pastor Jailed In Iran
The small Idaho town of Meridian was one of several municipalities in the U.S. state that held a vigil to pray for the safe return of Christian pastor Saeed Abedini who is in an Iranian jail. - 9/28/14

Iranians and Israelis find an unlikely musical detente in Germany
Israeli-Iranian ensemble Sistanagila, which combines both cultures' music into melodic wholes, is just one of several such collaborations that have sprung up in Germany. -Rachel Stern, CSM - 9/28/14

Iran's President Rouhani: Nuclear Talks 'Extremely Slow'
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says progress in ongoing nuclear talks with Western envoys has been "extremely slow" and warned that negotiations must speed up for a deal to be reached by a November 24 deadline. - 9/27/14

Iranian Super Heavyweight Weightlifter Behdad Salimi Snatches Iran's Fifth Gold Medals in Asiad
Super heavyweight weightlifter Behdad Salimi from Iran claimed a gold medal in the Asian Games on Friday. Olympic champion Salimi completed a hat-trick of Games records in the class with a 210kg snatch and 255kg clean and jerk for an aggregate 365kg in the final event of the weightlifting competition. - 9/27/14

What is the meaning of new Moscow Stance on Caspian Sea?
According to a reports posted recently in many places in the wake of the 4th Caspian Summit which is going to be held in Astrakhan of Russia, a Russian Foreign Ministry official, Igor Bratchikov, has told reporters in Moscow on September 22, 2014 that the Kremlin "supports the conditions of the 1921 Soviet-Iranian treaty under which the Caspian is considered a lake and is divided into two sectors." -Bahman Aghai Diba - 9/27/14

Squaring the Circle of ISIS
Well, expect no more. In the Middle East, the old battle script is quaint. ISIS is our new enemy. Or perhaps it is ISIL, or IS, or Daesh, or the Caliphate, or something. The point is, we have an enemy that "we need to fight there so we won't have to fight it here." It seems a pity because we share so much. They hate Bashar al-Assad and so do we. They can't stand the Persian ayatollahs and neither can we... -Bernard Chazelle, LobeLog - 9/27/14

Iran's inflation rate has dramatic fall
Iran's Central Bank says the inflation rate has been cut in half compared to the same time last year, falling to 20.1 percent. The report adds that health services have been hit with the highest inflation at 30.1 percent, with transportation trailing at 25 percent. - 9/27/14

Iraq Looking for an "Independent" Sunni Defense Minister
Iraqi President Fouad Massoum said that the government was looking for an independent Sunni Muslim to fill the post of defense minister in an effort to improve chances of reunifying the country and defeating the group that calls itself the Islamic State (IS). -Barbara Slavin, LobeLog - 9/27/14

Photos: President Rohani meets Iranians in New York
Foreign and Iranian investors are welcome, President Hassan Rohani said a meeting with Iranians residing in the US. Iran has achieved progress in promotion of relations with international players particularly the neighbors, he said on Thursday night in New York. - 9/26/14

US Negotiator Cites Progress in Iran Nuclear Talks
"I believe we are making progress," Wendy Sherman (chief U.S. negotiator at nuclear) said, referring to the last round of talks on Tehran's nuclear program currently underway in New York - and coinciding with the United Nations General Assembly annual meeting. - 9/26/14

Iran's Rohani Addresses Extremism, Nuclear Issue At UN
Addressing the UN General Assembly, Iranian President Hassan Rohani has said the West is responsible for "strategic blunders" that have turned the Middle East, Central Asia, and the Caucasus into a "haven for terrorists and extremists." - 9/26/14

Iran, EU, US held trilateral meeting in New York
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif , US Secretary of State John Kerry and EU former Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton met in New York on Thursday night. The three top diplomats sat down to discuss progress made during the ongoing nuclear talks and to confer on how to proceed with the negotiations. - 9/26/14

Iran economy attains positive growth after two years
The Central Bank of Iran (CBI) says country's economy has attained positive growth for the first time in two years. New figures released by the CBI on Thursday show the economy expanded 4.6 percent in the first quarter of the current Iranian calendar year (started March 21, 2014). - 9/26/14

Viber Company Refutes Tapping Claims by Iranian Officials
Following statements by Iran's Cyber Police Chief about his force's ability to monitor messages on Viber, the instant messaging service for cellphones, a Viber Company representative told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that the application's communications are encrypted and as such it is not possible for third parties to monitor messages. - 9/26/14

Iran turns Cameron's criticisms back on Britain
Iran has slammed the British Prime Minister for accusing Iran of supporting terrorists in the Middle East region, saying it is Britain that "has afflicted the world with the evil of ISIS." Mehr News reports that Marzieh Afkham, a spokeswoman for Iran's foreign ministry, said: "Britain has a history of creating discord in the region, and many of the problems in the region are a result of wrong British policies." - 9/26/14

The Cameron-Rouhani Meeting: What Comes Next?
The meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and British Prime Minister David Cameron on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly yesterday was an important moment for geopolitics, British-Iranian relations, and the growing European dialogue with Tehran. -Ellie Geranmayeh - 9/26/14

British Prime Minister, Iranian President Hold First Talks Since 1979
British Prime Minister David Cameron has met with Iran's President Hassan Rohani at the United Nations -- the first meeting between the countries' leaders since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. The meeting took place as the UN General Assembly got under way on September 24. - 9/25/14

Register Today for the IAAB Student Summit
The 2014 IAAB Student Summit will be held October 17th-19th at the University of Maryland, College Park. The Fall Summit is open to undergraduate students and will focus on the needs of student leaders and interested members of the student body hoping to gain a stronger understanding of their identity and the necessary skills to further build their campuses and local communities. -Iranian Alliances Across Borders - 9/25/14

Obama at UN: 'Reject Cancer of Violent Extremism'
On Iran, the president said his administration is committed to diplomatically resolving the nuclear issue "as part of our commitment to stop the spread of nuclear weapons and pursue the peace and security of a world without them." "This can only happen if Iran takes this historic opportunity," he said. - 9/25/14

Iran's President Rohani tells UN chief he's optimistic about nuclear deal
President Rohani, who is currently in New York to attend the UN General Assembly, told UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon that Iran is committed to all international agreements and the International Atomic Energy Agency's provisions, and it wishes to pursue its peaceful nuclear program. - 9/25/14

The Art of the Shahnameh: Introducing Iran's Epic Poem to a New Audience
An integral part of Persian civilisation, which stretches back several millennia, it's only right that the Shahnameh, the epic poem by Iran's national poet Ferdowsi, should be given a place within the sphere of international culture, just as Homer's Illiad, Dante's Divine Comedy, Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet and many other of mans creative expressions from world history have. -Ben Mirza, Huffington Post - 9/25/14

Iranian opposition leader Karroubi in hospital for latest health problem
Mehdi Karroubi, who has been under house arrest since February 2011, has been hospitalized due to gastrointestinal complications. Fatemeh Karroubi reported that her husband's physical health have been seriously compromised by the house arrest; however, she added that his spirits remain strong. - 9/25/14

Iranian Hardliners Block Rouhani's Promises of Greater Freedom
But Rouhani's defenders say he appears to be single-mindedly pursuing a nuclear deal with the West, hoping that this would boost his political capital and allow him to take on the conservative forces which are blocking his domestic policies. -Reuters - 9/25/14

Apocalypse Now, Iraq Edition
Sometimes, when I turn on the TV these days, the sense of seeing once again places in Iraq I'd been overwhelms me. After 22 years as a diplomat with the Department of State, I spent 12 long months in Iraq in 2009-2010 as part of the American occupation. My role was to lead two teams in "reconstructing" the nation. -Peter Van Buren, LobeLog - 9/25/14

EU Plans for Iran Gas Imports If Sanctions Go
The European Union is quietly increasing the urgency of a plan to import natural gas from Iran, as relations with Tehran thaw while those with top gas supplier Russia grow chillier. -Reuters - 9/25/14

Politics, Revolutionary Guard Corps still interfere in Iranian soccer
After the Iran-Iraq War ended and the Iranian economy flourished, the former generals who had fought started to participate in areas such as politics, economy, culture and sports. -Al-Monitor - 9/25/14

Rouhani to Hollande: West should comprehend Iran regional influence
New York - Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said here Tuesday in a meeting with his French counterpart that West should comprehend Iran's regional influence; major message of Iran-Sextet nuclear talks is that major world issues can be resolved through holding talks. - 9/24/14

Rouhani Looks to Warmer Ties with Saudis, Tepidly Criticizes US Syria Strikes
Speaking at a press breakfast with about two dozen media representatives, Rouhani expressed hope that the P5+1 (US, UK, France, Russia, China plus Germany) and Tehran will conclude a comprehensive agreement on Iran's nuclear program by the current Nov. 24 deadline but noted that differences remain and that this week's series of meetings in New York are likely to be critical. -Jim Lobe - 9/24/14

Iranian activists rally around jailed female volleyball fan
Three hundred Iranian political and cultural activists have written to President Hassan Rohani, drawing attention to the dismal situation of Ghoncheh Qavami in Evin Prison and urging the government to respect her citizen's rights and facilitate her release. - 9/24/14

Iran Police Chief says Facebook, WhatsApp, Viber inevitable in information era
Police Chief Brigadier General Esmail Ahmadi Moqaddam said on Tuesday that in the age of information making proper use of communications technologies is unavoidable and a must for progress. - 9/24/14

Hijab patrols on Tehran streets quashed by officials
The 4,000-member Ansar-e Hezbollah patrols, which had announced their intention to confront any public noncompliance with Hijab (the Islamic dress code), will no longer hit the streets of Tehran due to resistance from the Security Forces. - 9/24/14

Iran ready to supply Europe gas via Austria: President Rouhani
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani says the Islamic Republic can be a reliable supplier of energy for Europe, adding that Tehran is ready to transfer gas to the European countries via Austria. The Iranian president made the remarks in a Tuesday meeting with his Austrian counterpart Heinz Fischer in New York on the sidelines of the 69th UN General Assembly meeting. - 9/24/14

Shiraz developments to proceed despite objections
The Shiraz governor has warned activists opposing changes to the city's historic sites that the developments have all the necessary permits and will go ahead as planned. Last week, five eighteenth-century houses were demolished in the city to allow the extension of the Holy Shahcheragh Shrine. - 9/24/14

Moscow Voices Stance On Caspian Before Summit
Russian Foreign Ministry official Igor Bratchikov told reporters in Moscow on September 22 that the Kremlin supports the conditions of the 1921 Soviet-Iranian treaty under which the Caspian is considered a lake and is divided into two sectors. - 9/24/14

Iran's Rouhani on Global Stage as Opponents at Home Speak Up
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani Rouhani arrived in New York yesterday with the clear understanding that he's being carefully watched back home. The official purpose of his trip is to address the United Nations General Assembly, but much more is at stake. -Adnan Tabatabai - 9/24/14

Tehran's missing nuclear answers
Iran could consider providing information on issues with military dimensions, as well as allowing IAEA inspectors to visit the Parchin base provided that the West ceases its imposition of pressure -Shahir ShahidSaless, Gulf News - 9/24/14

How Iran sanctions nearly sank Phoenix woman's condo deal
A Phoenix woman's home purchase nearly was derailed after Wells Fargo froze her checking account and stopped her down payment from being delivered to an escrow account. The reason for Wells Fargo's actions last month? U.S. trade sanctions with Iran. -Robert Anglen, AZ Central - 9/24/14

U.S. told Iran of intent to strike Islamic State in Syria - source
The United States informed Iran in advance of its intention to strike Islamic State militants in Syria and assured Tehran that it would not target the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a senior Iranian official told Reuters. - 9/24/14

Iran's President Rouhani arrives in New York
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has arrived in New York to attend the 69th annual session of the United Nations General Assembly. The plane carrying the Iranian president arrived at John F. Kennedy International Airport on Monday afternoon local time. - 9/23/14

Oscar Buzz: 99 Homes and Rosewater
Before his passing, famed movie critic Roger Ebert declared writer-director Ramin Bahrani as the "new great American director." With the latest buzz surrounding Bahrani's new film, 99 Homes, Ebert's prophetic words are now bearing fruit. - 9/23/14

Caspian Sea is not the sea of peace: On the occasion of the 4th Summit of Caspian Leaders
Leaders of the Caspian Sea littoral states keep talking about the peace and security in the Caspian Sea. They even signed a security agreement in the Third Summit of the Caspian States (Baku, Azerbaijan Republic, 18 November 2010). But the reality is that the Caspian Sea is not as peaceful as it looks. -Bahman Aghai Diba - 9/23/14

Washington Post Reporter Jason Rezaian, Imprisoned in Iran, Suffers Severe Weight Loss
Jason Rezaian and Yeganeh Salehi have lost a "shocking" amount of weight in prison, an informed source has told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran. According to this source, the family of the imprisoned Iranian journalist Yeganeh Salehi was allowed to have their first visit with her and her Washington Post reporter husband Jason Rezaian on September 7, and they were astonished at the couple's appearance. - 9/23/14

Obama to Meet Israeli PM as US Denies Quid Pro Quo with Iran
President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are to meet next week, as the White House denies any deal with Iran regarding the fight against Islamic State (IS) militants and talks over Tehran's nuclear program. -Victor Beattie, VOA - 9/23/14

Explore Iran's UPR: In 2010, Iran accepted 126 recommendations on human rights
During its first Universal Periodic Review (UPR), Iran received 212 recommendations from 51 countries and accepted 126. Ahead of Iran's second UPR in October 2014, we took a look at Iran's implementations of these 126 recommendations. Has Iran's government done what it promised? - 9/23/14

Family's Video Appeals to Iran for Release of American
Anticipating the arrival of Iran's president in New York on Monday for the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly, the family of Amir Hekmati, a former United States Marine incarcerated in Tehran for three years, has called attention to the case by releasing a video in which his father, who has terminal brain cancer, appeals to Iranian leaders for Mr. Hekmati's freedom. -Rick Gladstone, NY Times - 9/23/14

Iranians Arrested Over Khomeini-Insult Texts
Eleven people have reportedly been arrested in the southern Iranian province of Shiraz after allegedly sending insulting SMS text messages about Islamic republic founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. - 9/23/14

Is Iran Using the ISIS Crisis for Leverage in the Nuclear Talks?
On Sunday a Reuters report quoting unnamed "senior Iranian officials" suggested Tehran was trying to use the crisis posed by the group that calls itself the Islamic State (ISIL or ISIS) in Iraq to increase Iran's leverage in negotiations over its nuclear program. -Jasmin Ramsey, LobeLog - 9/23/14

Water Shortage Arrives In Tehran: Khamenei Authorizes Use of 10 Billion Dollars
Following reports of heightened shortage of water in Iran in recent months, a newly released report indicates that in addition to the 13 large cities that now have a water crisis at their hands, two major dams, Lar and Latian to east of and close to Tehran, have dried up compounding the problem. - 9/22/14

Pars Equality Centers's 1st Annual Los Angeles Autumn Gala Features Popular Persian Band The Black Cats
On Saturday night, September 13, 2014, Pars Equality Center (PEC) a non-profit organization, and the first of its kind supporting the full integration of people of Persian (Iranian) origin in the United States - celebrated its 1st Annual Autumn Gala at the Hilton Universal Hotel in Universal City. - 9/22/14

Rohani Says Iran Will Help Defend Middle East Against 'Terrorists'
Iranian President Hassan Rohani says Tehran will help people in the Middle East defend themselves against "terrorists." Speaking September 22 before leaving for New York to attend the UN General Assembly meeting this week, he said "the government and armed forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran will help them everywhere." - 9/22/14

Kerry Holds Rare Face-to-Face Talks with Iran's FM
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held a rare face-to-face meeting with Iran's foreign minister Sunday, saying there is an opportunity for progress on nuclear talks. Kerry spoke with Mohammad Javad Zarif in a New York City hotel for more than an hour. - 9/22/14

Iranian Americans Come Together to Celebrate and Support Cyrus Habib for Washington State Senate
A number of PAAIA members and affiliated Iranian Americans gathered on Tuesday to celebrate and raise funds for Cyrus Habib, a member of Washington state's house who is running for state senate. - 9/22/14

Iran's "Today" heading to Oscars
Reza Mirkarimi's social drama "Today" was selected to be Iran's submission for the best foreign language film category at the 88th Academy Awards. The film is about a Tehran taxi driver, who becomes the impromptu protector of a desperate young pregnant woman after he rushes her to hospital. - 9/22/14

Iranian Security Forces Injure, Arrest Protesting Dervishes
A second day of protest by Gonabadi dervishes in front of the Tehran Prosecutor's office was met violently by security forces, who attacked and arrested a number of protesters. Majzooban-e Noor reported earlier that more than 800 dervishes were held overnight. - 9/22/14

Iranian Judiciary Gives Deadline For Blocking Sites Like Whatapp
The Iranian judiciary has given the administration one month to block mobile social networking sites such as Whatapp, Viber and Tango. The Rohani administration has not yet reacted to the judiciary's demand, but President Hassan Rohani has already expressed opposition to blocking mobile phone social networking sites such as Whatsapp. - 9/22/14

Iran, China Prepare For Joint Naval Exercises
Chinese warships have docked at the Iranian port of Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf as the two countries prepare to conduct joint naval exercises. - 9/22/14

Ahead of UN Meeting, Iran Seeks Compromise on IS, Nuclear Programs
UNITED NATIONS-- Iran is ready to work with the United States and its allies to stop Islamic State militants, but would like to see more flexibility on Iran's uranium enrichment program, senior Iranian officials told Reuters. -Reuters - 9/22/14

Column: Domestic Politics Limit Iran's Maneuverability on Nuclear Deal
Among the arguments Iranian officials are marshalling in the nuclear negotiations that resumed this week in New York is that domestic politics severely constrain their ability to compromise. This is the best we can do, they seem to be saying: Accept our position or you will face even more hardline interlocutors in the future. -Barbara Slavin, VOA - 9/20/14

President Rohani's Message To The American People: "I Want To Reduce Tensions"
Rouhani also expressed optimism about Iran's warming relations with the United States. "The close relationship between the two nations can resolve many problems. A closer contact and relationship would also be beneficial for the American people, and they can open new ways for the American politicians. We have to look at future more than the past," he said. - 9/20/14

Volleyball: Russia show winning spirit to claim fifth place with 3-0 win over Iran
Russia finished solidly to take the fifth place, after defeating Iran 3-0 (25-19, 25-21, 25-18) in the FIVB Volleyball Men's World Championship at the Atlas Arena on Saturday. - 9/20/14

Asian Games open in South Korea
The 2014 Asian Games opened in Incheon, South Korea on September 19 with 14,000 athletes and officials participating from 45 countries. The Iranian caravan consists of 276 athletes competing in 22 disciplines. - 9/20/14

Iran Nuclear Talks: The Price of Failure
Once upon a time, it seemed that the Obama Administration had held off opponents in Congress as well as pressure from Israel in order to press forward with negotiations with Iran. It seemed that President Barack Obama's penchant for diplomacy was finally bearing fruit and that the United States and Iran were coming to the table with a sense of determination and an understanding that a compromise needed to be reached over Iran's nuclear program. -Mitchell Plitnick, LobeLog - 9/20/14

10 films shortlisted for Iran's submission to 2015 Oscars
A team of experts is currently scrutinizing a shortlist of 10 films to select Iran's submission for the best foreign language film category at the 88th Academy Awards. - 9/20/14

Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks
NEW YORK-Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. As the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity. -Pamela Dockins, VOA - 9/20/14

Nuclear watchdog confirms Iran's continued compliance
As Iran and the 5+1 meet in New York for further nuclear talks, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed in its latest monthly report that Iran is meeting its commitment outlined in the Articles of Agreement reached last November in Geneva. - 9/20/14

Iran's Jila Baniyaghoob on journalism, prison and Rouhani
Jila Baniyaghoob, a prominent Iranian journalist and women's rights activist, has a charisma that comes through even on an online chat. In fact, she seems untainted by the many hardships she and her husband, Bahman Ahmadi Amouei, also a journalist, have endured to practice their profession in Iran. -Guardian - 9/20/14

Obama Not Scheduled, But Open To Meeting With Rohani
U.S. President Barack Obama is not scheduled to meet with Iranian President Hassan Rohani next week when both will be at the UN General Assembly, but a senior U.S. official said Obama remains open to such a meeting. - 9/19/14

Volleyball: Iran to face Russia for fifth place after loss to France
France defeated Iran 3-2 (25-20, 25-23, 22-25, 19-25, 15-9) to capture first place in Pool G of the FIVB Men's World Championship at Spodek Arena on Thursday night. Iran will play Olympic champions and World No 2 Russia for the fifth position. - 9/19/14

Iranians Will Accept a Nuclear Deal, But Not Just Any Deal: Poll
Iranians are open to a nuclear settlement along the lines of what their government has already proposed in ongoing negotiations with world powers, according to a survey of Iranian public opinion jointly conducted July 11-17 by the University of Tehran Center for Public Opinion Research (UTCPOR) and the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland (CISSM). -Derek Davison, LobeLog - 9/19/14

Iranian Cabinet Appeals For Cut In Water Consumption
The Iranian cabinet has expressed concern regarding the country's water shortage and made a serious appeal to the public to reduce water consumption, especially in the capital of Tehran. While the water shortage has been an ongoing problem, a severe decline in precipitation this year has made things worse, with two major dams running dry. - 9/19/14

Iran, World Powers Meet in New York for Nuclear Talks
Negotiators for Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany, known as the P5+1, have held a series of talks in New York on Iran's nuclear program this week, ahead of plenary negotiations on Friday. A senior U.S. administration official said it is clear that negotiators on both sides have come to the city to "go to work." -Pamela Dockins, VOA - 9/19/14

Women's right to attend sports events at centre of Iran's culture wars
A British-Iranian woman imprisoned In Tehran for attempting to watch a men's volleyball match is at the centre of Iran's cultural wars that constitute the backdrop to efforts to resolve problems with Iran's nuclear program and a struggle between reformists and conservatives in advance of parliamentary elections 18 months from now. -James M. Dorsey - 9/19/14

Royce/Engel Iran Letter: The Devil Lies in the Detail
Opponents of a nuclear agreement with Iran are mobilising once more. A recent letter to colleagues from the chairman and ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee sponsored by Ed Royce (R-CA) and Eliot Engel (D-NY) contains almost as many distortions of the truth as the annual address to the UN General Assembly of the current Prime Minister of Israel. -Peter Jenkins, LobeLog - 9/19/14

EU court rescinds Iran central bank sanctions
A top European court has struck down restrictions imposed by the European Union against the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) on an alleged charge of circumventing US-led sanctions against the Islamic Republic. - 9/19/14

Why Rouhani Could Walk Away
Six months ago, nuclear diplomacy with Iran almost seemed too big to fail. The dire consequences of diplomatic collapse - a return to a path towards war - were enough to get all parties involved to muster the political will to move toward a deal. But today, as talks resume in New York, even optimists recognize that the prospects are dimming for a comprehensive nuclear deal between Iran and the West. -Trita Parsi, NIAC - 9/19/14

A hollow laugh
To date, Iran is the only country in the region actually fighting against ISIS on both fronts, the one in Syria defending Bashar Assad's government, which Iran has supported since the beginning of the uprising in Syria, and the other front in Iraq opposing the Sunni ISIS. On the face of it, this suggests that a strategic alliance of Iran with the United States might benefit both. -William Pfaff, Chicago Tribune - 9/19/14

Volleyball: Grozer's masterpiece carries Germany to victory against Iran
Germany bounced back from an awful first outing in Pool G of the FIVB Men's World Championship to score a dominant victory over Iran in straight sets (25-15, 25-21, 25-19) at Spodek Arena of Katowice on Wednesday. - 9/18/14

Iran: Sentences for "Happy" video may not have to be served
The young Iranians who were arrested for making a music video for the Pharrel Williams song "Happy" have been sentenced to jail terms and lashes. The defence attorney told Iran Wire that he has finally received the sentences, adding that the sentences have been suspended for three years. - 9/18/14

As Rouhani Comes to NY, Domestic Repression in Iran Remains Unabated
Ahead of President Rouhani's visit to New York next week, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran released a video today, bringing into sharp focus the disconnect between Rouhani's rhetoric on domestic affairs and the reality on the ground. - 9/18/14

Iranian President Says Islamic State (IS) Wants To Kill 'Humanity'
Iran's president and foreign minister have criticized the United States' policy for fighting Islamic State (IS) militants. President Hassan Rohani gave an interview to U.S. television network NBC on September 17, and questioned whether air strikes alone would be enough to defeat to the militant group. - 9/18/14

Coalition Of One: Iran Leads Own Fight Against Islamic State
The United States is putting together the first international coalition to try to roll back the Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq and Syria. But when the nearly 40-state-strong alliance starts operations, it will find that there is already another coalition on the ground whose presence could complicate the U.S.-led effort in unpredictable ways. -Charles Recknagel, RFE - 9/18/14

Yahoo! to Offer Iranians Email Services Again
One year after Yahoo! decided to exclude Iran from the list of countries that can access some of its services, the company has resumed providing access to Iranian users to open accounts and use the company's Yahoo Messenger services. - 9/18/14

Female Iranian cineastes attending New York conference
Four Iranian female cineastes arrived in New York on Wednesday to attend the Global Women's Cinema Conference, which kicks off today at the Humanities Institute of the Stony Brook University. - 9/18/14

Iran Nuclear Negotiations: Zarif- Ashton hold talks for over 3 hours in New York
Talks between Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton lasted for over three hours in New York. The 7th round of nuclear talks between Iran and Group 5+1 resumed on Wednesday after a two month gap by Zarif hosting Ashton at a working lunch. - 9/18/14

Iran Nuclear Deal Likely to Increase US Regional Leverage
A successful agreement on Iran's nuclear program could significantly enhance US leverage and influence throughout the greater Middle East, according to a new report signed by 31 former senior US officials and regional experts released here Wednesday. -Jim Lobe, LobeLog - 9/18/14

Hardline Iranian cleric warns faster internet bad for youth
Mashhad's Friday Mass Imam, a hardline cleric, has slammed the government's efforts to improve internet access for Iranians, saying it goes against the directions of the Islamic Republic's Supreme Leader and "promotes corruption." - 9/18/14

Mossadegh: A Film By Roozbeh Dadvand
Iran. 1959. It is six years after the CIA orchestrated coup d'etat that overthrew democratic Prime Minister Mohammad Mossadegh from power. Now living under house arrest and suffering from a severe illness, Mossadegh must decide whether or not to trust an American physician that is sent to treat him. - 9/17/14

Photos: Fire Engulfs Ashuradeh, The Sole Iranian Island In Caspian Sea
Ashuradeh, the only Iranian island in Caspian Sea, has suffered great damage after it was engulfed by a devastating fire on Tuesday. About 100 hectares of grasslands and woods on the island were burned in the fire. - 9/17/14

Iran's President Rouhani to travel to New York: Spokesman
Government spokesman Mohammad Baqer Nobakht said here on Wednesday that President Hassan Rouhani is slated to travel to New York to take part in the 69th annual session of the United Nations General Assembly. - 9/17/14

Iranian Interior Ministry objects to patrols enforcing hijab
Extremist groups such as Ansar-e Hezbollah and Basij forces have become more vocal and active about enforcing hijab in public. This appears to be a backlash against the more progressive policies of the Rohani administration and President Rohani's call for moderation. - 9/17/14

New report on Iran's failed promises on human rights
Titled "Unfulfilled Promises", and launched on Monday at the United Nations headquarters in Geneva, the report discusses 34 specific pledges made by Iran in February 2010 at the UN Human Rights Council that in some way could address human rights violations faced by members of Iran's Baha'i community. - 9/17/14

Officials warn millions of Iranians suffer from poor diet
The Ministry of Health has reported that 47 million Iranians do not have an adequate diet, which in turn has caused "widespread vitamin D deficiency in the past 10 years and a decrease in height." - 9/17/14

Bridging the Uranium Enrichment Gap with Iran
With the Nov. 24 deadline looming, Iran and world powers will resume talks toward a final deal over Iran's nuclear program this week in New York, but the gap between the two sides over the future size and scope of Iran's uranium enrichment program seems as wide as ever. -Derek Davison, LobeLog - 9/17/14

IRGC says Qods Forces aid troubled countries like Iraq
The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) says its international arm, the Qods Forces, support "revolutionary and resistance movements of the dispossessed and the oppressed all around the world," adding that the nature of the IRGC's assistance is "advisory and educational." - 9/17/14

Chinese vessel rescued by Iranian Navy
Iranian naval forces rescued a Chinese container vessel surrendered by pirates in the Gulf of Adan on Wednesday morning. The Chinese vessel was heading towards Indian Ocean from Singapore when it was attacked by armed pirates riding in five speedboats. - 9/17/14

Carlos Queiroz Signs Four-Year Contract Extension with Iran Football Federation
Iran Football Federation (IFF) has extended the contract of Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz for four more years. On Tuesday, the Portuguese coach, who was supposed to quit his job in the Iranian football team, extended his contract until the 2018 FIFA World Cup. - 9/16/14

As US Shuns Iran in Fight Against ISIS, History Repeats
Last week epitomized the highs and lows of hoping for an improvement in US-Iran relations. A BBC report on Sept. 5 that Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei had approved Iranian cooperation with the US military in the fight against ISIS was met with near elation in many quarters. But after the ensuing Iranian denials that cooperation was in fact approved, the Americans went even further by denying even the possibility of formal cooperation. -Esfandyar Batmanghelidj - 9/16/14

Iran FM criticizes Norway's expulsion of Iranian students
"The expulsion of Iranian students has had adverse consequences on our public opinion and academic circles and this is detrimental to Norway," Zarif said in a Monday meeting with new Norwegian Ambassador to Tehran Aud Lise Norheim. - 9/16/14

Iran rejected U.S. request for cooperation against ISIL: Supreme Leader
"We are proud that the U.S. was disappointed" that Iran was not part of an "erroneous" and "collective" coalition against ISIL, the Leader told reporters after being discharged from hospital. He stated that the U.S. officials' claims of campaign against ISIL are "empty" and "biased". - 9/16/14

Iran: Plainclothes forces to patrol for hijab violations
The head of Ansar-e Hezbollah, the paramilitary group usually referred to as "plainclothes" forces by the Iranian public, has announced that it will put 4,000 of its forces on the street next week to confront violations of hijab, the Islamic public dress code. - 9/16/14

Mojtahed Shabestari: Islam is in Crisis
Last Thursday, the famous Tohid Center in Tehran held its first gathering after a lull of five years and the occasion was to commemorate the moderate ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani, a theologian and reformist senior cleric, who had died seven months after the collapse of the Pahlavi regime in 1979. -Fahimeh Abdollahi - 9/16/14

Iran to scrap 400,000 cars to ease pollution
The Iranian government has announced plans to take up to 400,000 vehicles that don't meet emission standards off the roads by the end of the current Iranian calendar year, in a bid to reduce the country's air pollution problems. - 9/16/14

UN Nuclear Agency Head Pressures Iran for Information
Three weeks after Iran failed to meet an August 25 deadline for providing requested information to the International Atomic Energy Agency, Director General Yukiya Amano said Tehran needed to do much more to address the IAEA's concerns. -Reuters - 9/16/14

Volleyball: Relentless Ghafour Guides Iran To A Key Win Over Serbia And Historic Climb To Third Round
Iran earned a crucial win to maintain their hopes in Poland as they prevailed over Serbia 3-1 (27-25, 22-25, 25-22, 25-18) and made it to the third round of the 2014 FIVB Men's World Championship in Poland. - 9/15/14

Thinking Outside The Box
Why doesn't the United States take advantage of this enormous opportunity to engage Iran and openly welcome its cooperation in settling the troubling issues in the Middle East? What? You want to tell us that earth is not flat when, standing in the middle of the prairies in Kansas or Nebraska, we can clearly see that it is flat whichever way we look!? -Kam Zarrabi - 9/15/14

US Open to Future Talks with Iran on Fighting Islamic State
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says he has rejected Obama administration requests for help in fighting against Islamic State militants in Iraq. U.S. officials say there is no military coordination with Iran but Washington is open to future talks on fighting the Islamic State. -Scott Stearns, VOA - 9/15/14

Iran's Amir Kabir University to develop stronger supercomputer
Researchers in Amir Kabir University of Technology work to improve the current supercomputer to higher processing capability, which may calculate almost 1000 times faster. - 9/15/14

Programs target illiterate working children in Iran
Iran's ministry of education says 10 percent of the 116,000 people identified as illiterate in the last Tehran census are working children, adding that the actual number could be even higher. - 9/15/14

Iranian Security Forces Investigate Texts Insulting Republic Founder
In recent weeks, a large number of jokes regarding Ayatollah Khomeini have hit social networking sites and cellphones in Iran, including on Viber. Some have suggested that this might be a prelude to the government's blocking of Viber. - 9/15/14

Is Rouhani's Iran Tilting East?
Two simultaneous pieces of economic news in Iran inform us of a trend in the Rouhani administration's foreign policy. Firstly, Iranian and Russian press reported last week that Tehran and Moscow signed a trade agreement amounting to 70 billion euros on Sept. 9... -Shahir Shahidsaless, LobeLog - 9/15/14

France opens Iraq conference urging "global" fight on jihadists
French President Francois Hollande called on Monday for united international action to tackle the threat from Islamic State militants as he opened a conference on Iraq bringing together members of a U.S.-led coalition. -John Irish and Jason Szep, Reuters - 9/15/14

Iran ranks first in 2014 Greco-Roman Wrestling World Championship
Iran finished first in the 56th Greco-Roman Wrestling World Championship in Tashkent, Uzbekistan after Qasem Rezaei gained a ronze medal in 98-kg weight category on Sunday. - 9/14/14

Volleyball: Epic five-sets battle goes for Poland over Iran
In an incredible battle in front of a packed Atlas Arena, host team Poland survived a serious scare from Iran and earned a hard-fought win 3-2 (25-17, 25-16, 24-26, 19-25, 16-14). The result qualified France for the next round, while both Poland and Iran keep their chances. - 9/14/14

Largest German university delegation visits Iran
The largest German university scientific delegation is visiting Iran to discuss mutual cooperation with Iranian universities, said Iranian Deputy Minister of Science for International Affairs Hossein Amoli. The delegation includes university presidents of Aachen, Giessen, Rhine-Waal, Darmstadt, Rostock universities and German University in Istanbul. - 9/14/14

Iranian MP renews call for release of opposition figures
Conservative Iranian MP Ali Motahari has once again urged the Islamic Republic government to release MirHosein Mousavi, Mehdi Karroubi and Zahra Rahnavard, the opposition leaders who have been under house arrest since February 2011 for challenging the legitimacy of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's victory in the 2009 election. - 9/14/14

Iraq's Unravelling and Azerbaijan
The unraveling of Iraq may have some interesting, even alarming implications for the Caspian Basin state of Azerbaijan. Unlike other Arab states in turmoil, including Libya and Syria, Iraq has a religious and cultural profile that somewhat mimics Azerbaijan's. -Eldar Mamedov, LobeLog - 9/14/14

More Than Two Months in Solitary Confinement for Protesting Exclusion of Women in Stadium
A young woman's detention in solitary confinement continues after her June 30, 2014 arrest, following her earlier arrest and release outside a Tehran sports stadium when she tried to attend a volleyball game. Ghoncheh Ghavami's lawyer, Mahmoud Alizadeh Tabatabaee, told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran that he is unaware of his client's charges despite the fact that Ghavami has been in solitary confinement at Evin Prison for more than two months and her "temporary detention" orders have been extended twice. - 9/13/14

U.S. and Iran Engage in Volleyball Diplomacy
Since the Iranian Revolution in 1979, the Iranian and American people have been isolated from one another due to long-standing disputes between their governments. Routine interactions, like sporting events between national clubs, and other cultural exchanges have been few and far between. However, recently thousands of fans across Southern California were able to witness a rarity: the U.S. and Iranian national volleyball teams squaring off in friendly exhibition matches as part of a goodwill exchange between the two estranged nations. -Farshad Farahat - 9/13/14

Kerry: Inappropriate for Iran to Join Talks on Fighting IS
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says it "would not be appropriate" for Iran to join talks in Paris on Monday on fighting Islamic State militants because of Tehran's support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Secretary Kerry met Friday in Ankara with Turkish officials to discuss the Islamic State threat. - 9/13/14

Private homes in Iran hold more gold than Central Bank
The lack of a clear outlook on the Iranian economy has led Iranians to store large quantities of gold in their home, and recent reports indicate that the amount of gold stored in homes now exceeds the amount in the Central Bank. - 9/13/14

Iran, Russia call for promotion of bilateral relations
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, met Friday on the sidelines of the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in the Tajik capital to discuss issues of mutual interest as well as regional and international developments. - 9/13/14

China seeks expansion of strategic ties with Iran: Xi
In a Friday meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in the Tajik capital, Dushanbe, Xi underscored the Islamic Republic's significant position in the region and the entire world, saying Beijing seeks to promote "strategic" ties with Tehran. - 9/13/14

To beat Islamic State, Obama needs Iran
Iran was not mentioned in Obama's speech, yet it is a central party in the Iraqi theater. It has strong influence over the new government of Haidar al-Abadi, Shi'ite militias and the Kurds - all of whom oppose Islamic State. Without at least tacit coordination with Iran, these forces will be difficult to mobilize effectively. -William B. Quandt, Reuters - 9/13/14

Volleyball: Ghafour wreak havoc on Argentine defence to command Iranian victory
Iranian opposite Amir Ghafour wreaked havoc on the Argentine blockers as he powered his team with a 17-point performance to secure their second victory in straight sets (25-15, 25-23, 25-16) in the FIVB Volleyball Men's World Championship at the Luczniczka Hall on Thursday. - 9/12/14

"Happy" Youths Go on Trial in Tehran
The Iranian youths who produced the dance video "Happy in Tehran" set to the Pharrell Williams hit song "Happy" were put on trial in Tehran on September 9, 2014, where they were charged with "participation in producing a vulgar video clip" and conducting "illicit relations" with one another, an informed source told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran. - 9/12/14

Column: Coalition Against Islamic State Must Include Iran
President Barack Obama is right to focus on the responsibility of the Sunni Muslim world to attack and expunge the cancer that is the militant group calling itself the Islamic State (IS). But to succeed, the coalition must encompass the entire Muslim world and cannot exclude the most important Shiite nation, Iran. -Barbara Slavin - 9/12/14

Russia Courts Allies at Eurasian Summit
As a Eurasian summit began in Tajikistan on Thursday, analysts say Moscow could use the multilateral meeting to bolster support. Russia will take the reins of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) for the next year at the two-day summit of China, Russia, and four Central Asian countries in Dushanbe. -Bai Hua, VOA - 9/12/14

Iran, 3 European states hold nuclear talks in Vienna
The session, attended by Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi and the representatives of France, Britain and Germany, was held at the UN headquarters in the Austrian capital on Thursday morning. - 9/12/14

Iran: Radical group gears up to begin morality patrols
A radical Iranian pressure group has reaffirmed its vow to patrol Tehran's streets to enforce Islamic norms in the face of disapproval from government officials, in what may become the next showdown between President Hassan Rouhani and his conservative opponents. -Asharq Al-Awsat - 9/12/14

Xerxes Speaks: A Graphic Novel on Greco-Persian Wars, from Persian point of view
"Xerxes Speaks" presents the battle of Thermopylae (the subject of the first "300" graphic novel and movie) from a Persian perspective; but it also delves deeper into Iran's first 200 years to analyze the causes and consequences of the empire's rapid expansion. It is well-researched, so I hope you find it educational as well as entertaining. -Ramin Abhari - 9/11/14

Iran Prevail Over Confederation Rivals Australia In Four-Setter
Iran prevailed over Asian Confederation counterparts Australia in a four-setter (25-23, 25-21, 21-25, 25-17) to avail of their first win in the second round in Pool E at the Luczniczka Hall on Wednesday. - 9/11/14

Rohani Helps Launch Iranian-Funded Power Plant In Tajikistan
Iranian President Hassan Rohani has helped inaugurate a power generating unit at an Iranian-funded hydroelectric plant in Tajikistan. Rohani and Rahmon also held talks in the Central Asian nation's capital, Dushanbe, and presided over the signing of agreements cooperation on security, anti-drug effots, education and other issues. - 9/11/14

Iran-Russia trade could jump tenfold in 2 years: Iranian Oil Minister
Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh says Iran and Russia can increase bilateral trade by tenfold over the next two years. On Tuesday, Zanganeh and Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak signed an agreement in Tehran to expand cooperation in the areas of industry, mining, trade, agriculture, tourism, modern technology, and energy. - 9/11/14

IMF sees jobless rate rising in Iran
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has predicted that the unemployment rate in Iran will rise to 14.65 in 2015, the Tasnim News Agency reported on Sunday. IMF said Iran's unemployment rate stood at 12.93 percent in 2013, while the figure is forecast to reach 14.01 percent in 2014. - 9/11/14

British-Iranian woman Ghonche Ghavami imprisoned for two months for trying to watch men's volleyball game in Tehran
Ghoncheh Ghavami, 25, was arrested along with more than a dozen women as they tried to enter a stadium where the Iranian national men's team was playing Italy on 20 June. -Independent - 9/11/14

Banned Iranian author Hossein Abkenar takes up at Black Mountain Institute
Most of us take our freedoms for granted because that's how freedom works: You use it; you don't think about it. The City of Asylum program at the Black Mountain Institute at UNLV supports writers whose freedoms have been stripped by censorship and whose lives may be in danger. -Las Vegas Weekly - 9/11/14

Obama's Speech on ISIS: The Big Picture
For these opponents of an agreement with Iran, the issue is not about just the Iranian nuclear program, but also the geopolitical competitions that are multifarious throughout the Middle East. Keeping Iran from rejoining the international community is a key goal of several Middle Eastern states, but there is no reason for this to be America's goal, especially since ...-Robert E. Hunter, LobeLog - 9/11/14

Jailed Iranian dervishes set terms for ending hunger strike
The nine jailed Gonabadi dervishes who have begun a hunger strike have issued a statement to announce their demands. The imprisoned dervishes write that they have already written their wills and are prepared to die for their cause. - 9/11/14

Traditional elements shine in Iran's modern art
Gizella Varga-Sinai's artwork doesn't simply boast beauty, it recites poetry in volumes. Her "Kallehpaz" -- one of the hundreds of paintings reflecting her love of Iran, Persian culture and everyday life -- has found a permanent home at the George Pompidou Cultural Center in Paris. -Mehrnaz Samimi, Al-Monitor - 9/11/14

Iran's freestyle team finishes 2nd in World Championships
The Iranian freestyle wrestling team came second in the 2014 World Wrestling Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on Tuesday. The Iranian team won three silver and two bronze medals in the competitions held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. - 9/10/14

Iran: Minister warns of ballooning unemployment
Iran's Labour Minister is sounding an alarm about the rising rate of unemployment, warning that if the current trend continues, the country could have 10 million unemployed workers within seven years. - 9/10/14

Iranian researchers produce anti-depressant pills from saffron
Iranian researchers have produced anti-depressant pills, using saffron extract. Head of Iranian Drug Produces Development Center of Mashhad Medical Sciences University said the country aims to mass produce crocin tablets used for recovery of depression. - 9/10/14

Oil prices suffer steady decline
Oil prices have fallen below $100 a barrel for the first time in the past 14 months. Reports on Monday September 8 indicate that Brent North Sea Crude oil is now priced at $99.95 a barrel. - 9/10/14

A Survivor's Story Becomes a Silicon Valley Dream Come True and a Calling to Give Back
In a community replete with success stories, not often are there equally impressive tales of philanthropy. Bita Daryabari changes that. She has founded the Pars Equality Center to serve Iranian immigrants who arrive in California, and desperately need help assimilating in a new world. -Maryam Zar, Huffington Post - 9/10/14

John Simpson: Iran is the most charming country on Earth
For John Simpson, Iran's incredible monuments, dazzling landscapes and hospitable people make it a holiday destination beyond compare -Telegraph, UK - 9/10/14

This Loophole Lets The US Use Iranian Airspace To Fly Its Personnel To And From Afghanistan
The U.S.'s years of semi-official but nevertheless quite obvious use of Iranian airspace didn't prove overtly problematic until September 5. The flight eventually reached Dubai -- 9 hours and 57 minutes behind schedule, a FlyDubai spokesperson told Business Insider. -Armin Rosen - 9/10/14

Longtime Rivals Look to Team Up to Confront ISIS
As the United States and its allies look to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, longtime adversaries with a common fear of the radical movement are scrambling to see if they can cooperate to defeat the rising threat. -Tim Arango, NY Times - 9/10/14

69 Percent Of Young Iranians Use Software To Get Around Internet Filtering: Survey
Some 67.4 percent of Iranian young people (between the ages of 15-29) use the internet, according to a survey conducted by the Iranian Center for Research and Strategic Studies. 69.3% of Iranian young people reported using anti-internet filter software to be able to surf through blocked websites. - 9/9/14

International Symposium of Contemporary Sculpture (Padideh) announces winners
The International Symposium of Contemporary Sculpture (Padideh) announced winners in Mashhad on Sunday evening. Thirty-two sculptors from Iran, China, South Korea, Germany and Serbia created works at the symposium, which opened in the northeastern Iranian city on September 15. - 9/9/14

Kissinger on Iran: Belts, Empires, and Getting it Wrong
Henry Kissinger may be the grand old man of US foreign policy, but when it comes to understanding Iran, his analytical skills have begun to fade. In his NPR discussion with Scott Simon, broadcast Sept. 6, Kissinger got it monumentally wrong. One can only be grateful he is no longer making policy. -John Limbert - 9/9/14

Booing Islam in Schools
The new document approved by Iran's Supreme Council on Education is a clear example of what president Hassan Rouhani has called "booing Islam." Rouhani has rightly said that those who push young women into police vans, who create walls to separate men from women, and who wish to filter everybody in society as a way to make them more Islamic, are in fact booing Islam and turning Islam into a bad name. -Ali-Asqar Ramezanpour - 9/9/14

Iranian Nuclear Deadlock: In Search of the Magic Formula
A shadow of doubt is spreading over the negotiation between Iran and world powers as the gap over the key issue of the acceptable size and scope of the Iranian enrichment program slowly reveals itself as unbridgeable. The inability to solve this one issue, which exists among so many others, has resulted in the real risk that all the efforts deployed in the past year to reach a long-term agreement may have been in vain. -Francois Nicoullaud, LobeLog - 9/9/14

Meet the Iranian woman who risked everything to save her brother from a death sentence
If a woman in Iran can have it all, Maryam Malekpour came close. At 27, the striking, dark-haired mechanical engineer had a university degree, a reliable job at a Tehran oil and gas company, a husband, a devoted family and a lively circle of friends. Days were a mellow round of work, swimming, tennis and hanging out in the city. -Olivia Ward, Toronto Star - 9/9/14

Minister says ISIS not recruiting in Iran
Iran's Minister of the Interior said on Monday September 8 that ISIS forces in Iraq have possible plans to "attack Iran" but he added that there have been no cases of ISIS attempting to recruit in Iran. - 9/9/14

Inside Iran's 'revolutionary' rap
Over the last decade, underground Iranian rap has grown to become one of the most popular genres among youth. -Erin Neil, AlJazeera - 9/9/14

Volleyball: Iran's Mousavi Put A Final Block On Puerto Rican Ambitions
Another outstanding blocking display from tournament-leader Seyed Mousavi highlighted Iran's smooth win over Puerto Rico by 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-14). The NORCECA team finished their run in Poland after the defeat, while Iran ended up second in Pool D. - 9/8/14

Iran's President Rouhani says his administration to fight corruption with no fear, criticizes filtering and gender segregation
Criticizing the idea of separating men and women in public places, including universities and work places, Rouhani said, "Separation is not an answer to cultural problems." "In order to promote ethics in the society, we must learn scientific methods to deal with our young generation. "Walls and (anti-Internet) filters are not the answers" to the young generation's issues, said the president. - 9/8/14

Dozens arrested at "immoral party" in Khezershahr, Iran
Forty-three young men and women were arrested at a party in the coastal city of Khezershahr in Mazandaran. The Shahrvand daily reported on Sunday September 7 that the 27 women and 16 men had "met through Facebook" and arrived at Khezershahr from various Iranian cities to celebrate a birthday in one of the villas. - 9/8/14

Launch Party for B'ta'arof, Iran: RPM and Omid Walizadeh at Levantine Cultural Center in Los Angeles
We invite you to participate in an evening of Iranian literary and artistic culture on behalf of B|ta'arof magazine and the London-based collective, Magic of Persia. This is a night to celebrate fiercely independent and creative Iranian writers and artists with a launch party for Iran: RPM Vol. 2 from Magic of Persia and the latest issue of B|ta'arof, as well as Omid Walizadeh's LP, Modern Persian Speech Sounds. - 9/8/14

Iran's Supreme Leader Has Prostate Surgery
Iranian state television says Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has undergone successful prostate surgery. Alireza Marandi, the head of Khamenei's medical team, said the operation on the 75-year-old Khamenei was done in the capital, Tehran. - 9/8/14

Iran sanctions harm world including EU: Danish FM
TEHRAN - Danish Foreign Minister Martin Lidegaard has expressed optimism about the prospect of the Iran-5+1 group talks over Tehran's nuclear energy program, saying anti-Iran sanctions harm not only Iran, but also the entire world, including the European Union states. - 9/8/14

IAEA Report Casts a Shadow Over a Fair Prospect
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has issued its latest quarterly report on Iran. The IAEA Board will consider the Sept. 5 report during the week of Sept. 15. Much initial comment has centred on signs that the process launched on Nov. 11, 2013, when the IAEA and Iran agreed on a framework for addressing all outstanding IAEA concerns about the nature of Iran's nuclear program, is starting to stall. -Peter Jenkins, LobeLog - 9/8/14

Volleyball: Another Blocking Show From Iran To Move To Next Round
Once again strengthening from their blocks, Iran managed to defeat Belgium 3-1 (25-23, 25-15, 21-25, 25-20) and secured their ticket for the second phase of FIVB Men's World Championship in Poland. - 9/7/14

Iranian Director Rakhshan Bani-Etemad Wins Best Screenplay Award at Venice Film Festival
Leading Iranian female filmmaker Rakhshan Bani-Etemad has garnered award at the 71st International Venice Film Festival in Italy. Bani-Etemad received the Best Screenplay award for her film Tales during the awards ceremony on the closing day of the festival on September 6, 2014 at Venice Lido. - 9/7/14

Gender Segregation Gains Momentum in Iran: Women Prohibited from More Jobs
Shargh Daily reported on September 2, 2014, that women are now banned from appearing on stage at musical performances in 13 provinces across the country. Only bands without any female members will be granted the required performance license, according to the report. - 9/7/14

Iran: Water supply reduced for agriculture sector
Iran's Ministry of Agriculture has announced that beginning in October of this year, the water allotted to agricultural developments will be reduced by almost 50 percent in accordance with a proposal by the Department of Environment. ISNA reports that according to top ministry official Mohammad Hossein Shariatmadar, the plan is meant to counter the country's critical water shortage. - 9/7/14

Former Iranian political prisoner describes suspicious group from 2009
Iranian journalist and former political prisoner Emaddedin Baghi says that in the wake of the 2009 Iranian election, 100 armed supporters of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad were arrested. - 9/7/14

Iran sees no limits to expansion of economic ties with Russia: Oil Minister
Iran sees no limits to expand economic ties with Russia, Iranian Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh said. Iran and Russia will hold their 11th joint economic committee meeting in Tehran on September 9-10. - 9/7/14

Iran, U.S. hold bilateral nuclear talks in Geneva
Iran and the U.S. started bilateral talks in Geneva on Thursday at deputy foreign ministerial level to narrow differences in achieving a final nuclear deal. The talks which continued on Friday are expected to run into Saturday. Simultaneously, Iran and the U.S. are holding talks at expert level in Geneva. - 9/6/14

Iran's Nuclear Future
Sir Richard Dalton, British ambassador to Iran from 2002-06, and I have co-authored a paper for the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House) on Iran's Nuclear Future. Below is an edited transcript of the remarks with which I introduced the paper at a meeting in London on Sept. 4 -Peter Jenkins, LobeLog - 9/6/14

Flight from US Base in Afghanistan Lands in Iran after 'Bureaucratic Issue'
A charter flight from the largest U.S. military base in Afghanistan to Dubai made an unexpected landing in Iran on Friday following what a senior U.S. diplomatic official called a "bureaucratic issue." - 9/6/14

Tehran In No Mood To Laugh At Khomeini Jokes
A friend of the Imam asks him, "Would you like to drink vodka or tequila?" Outraged at the indignity, the pious Imam slaps the man in the face. "What's wrong with homemade aragh sagi?" he asks. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 9/6/14

Pars Equality Center's 1st Annual Los Angeles Autumn Gala Features Popular Persian Pop Band The Black Cats
On Saturday, September 13, 2014, Pars Equality Center (PEC) ( - a non-profit organization, and the first of its kind supporting the full integration of people of Persian (Iranian) origin in the United States - will celebrate its 1st Annual Autumn Gala at the Hilton Universal Hotel in Universal City. - 9/6/14

How America Made ISISo
When you think about it, from the moment the first bombs began falling on Afghanistan in October 2001 to the present, not a single U.S. military intervention has had anything like its intended effect. Each one has, in time, proven a disaster in its own special way, providing breeding grounds for extremism and producing yet another set of recruitment posters for yet another set of jihadist movements. -Tom Engelhardt, LobeLog - 9/6/14

Iran 'backs US military contacts' to fight Islamic State
Iran's Supreme Leader has approved co-operation with the US as part of the fight against Islamic State (IS) in Iraq, sources have told BBC Persian. Ayatollah Khamenei has authorised his top commander to co-ordinate military operations with the US, Iraqi and Kurdish forces, sources in Tehran say. -BBC - 9/6/14

The Islamic Caliphate &The "Root Causes"
The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, warned his nation during a televised address the other day of the severe danger of terrorism by the advocates of the rising monster, the Islamic State or Caliphate. He pointed to the "root causes" of this evil plague that was spreading rapidly throughout the Islamic world from the Middle East to Africa. The "root causes" were, in short, an archaic poisonous ideology and violent extremism. -Kam Zarrabi - 9/5/14

VOLLEYBALL: France Put An End To Iran's Run With A Hard-Fought Victory
In another thrilling contest at Krakow Arena, France handled Iran their first defeat at FIVB Men's World Championship Pool D, by 3-1 (25-18, 14-25, 25-19, 27-25). - 9/5/14

Gender Segregation Violates the Rights of Women in Iran
The recent sharp exchange during a press conference between Morteza Talai, Deputy Chairperson of the Tehran City Council, and a female journalist from Sharq newspapers over Talai's support of a recent gender-segregation initiative in the Municipality of Tehran, reflects the intensifying struggle between hardliners intent on controlling the domestic sphere and more moderate elements of Iranian society who resist relinquishing their basic rights. -Leila Mouri - 9/5/14

Quake Hits City Of Shiraz In Southern Iran
An earthquake measuring 4.3 on the Richter scale hit the city of Shiraz in Fars province, southern Iran, on Friday morning. The Seismological center of Fars province affiliated to the Geophysics Institute of Tehran University registered the quake at 04:21 hours local time. - 9/5/14

Iran, Saudi Arabia Face Common Threat in Islamic State
Saudi Arabia will be a big part of the Obama administration's push for an international coalition to fight the Islamic State extremist group. Iran is already in that fight, backing a new government in Baghdad and helping arm the Kurds. -Scott Stearns, VOA - 9/5/14

Khawaja Arrest Exposes Bahrain's Rights Abuses, US Hypocrisy
If actions speak louder than words, then Bahrain's decision to arrest the prominent human rights activist, Maryam al-Khawaja, on Aug. 29 demonstrates that, despite promises to the contrary, the island kingdom has no real intention of cleaning up its poor human rights record. -Derek Davison, LobeLog - 9/5/14

EU's Mogherini Could Usher in Better Relations with Iran
Just as the nuclear-focused talks between Iran and world powers are set to resume, the European Union has named Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini its new foreign policy chief. While current High Representative Catherine Ashton will remain in her post as the key mediator in the negotiations until the Nov. 24 deadline, Mogherini's appointment has already got people asking: How will she deal with Iran? -Eldar Mamedov - 9/4/14

Iran starts building Mideast largest oncology center in Rasht
Iran started construction of the Middle East's largest oncology research center in a ceremony attended by a distinguished Iranian neurosurgeon and medical scientist professor Majid Samii in Rasht City, northern Iran. - 9/4/14

Desert forms around Iran's large, drying Lake Urmia
About 300 hectares of new desert has formed around Lake Urmia as a result of the lake's rapid drying, and the resulting salt storms have become a serious threat to people living in the region. Forestry authorities say at least 10 percent of these deserts must be immediately replenished. - 9/4/14

Iranian reformist journalist, activist blogger released after 5 years
Mehdi Mahmoudian, a reformist journalist, was released from Karaj's Rejaishahr Prison at the end of his sentence. Also, ossein Ronaghi Maleki, the Iranian blogger who was arrested following the 2009 election protests and jailed ever since, has been released. - 9/4/14

Persians by Aeschylus at Getty Villa in Los Angeles
New York-based SITI Company, one of America's leading theater ensembles, returns to the Getty Villa this fall to perform Persians, an emotional story of war, victory, and loss experienced by an imagined Persian court. - 9/4/14

Iran, US Hold Bilateral Nuclear Talks in Geneva
Iran and the United States met in Geneva for bilateral talks on Thursday as international diplomacy intensifies to end a decade-old dispute over Tehran's atomic activities by a new deadline in late November. -Reuters - 9/4/14

Iran to continue bypassing illegal US sanctions: Oil Minister
Iran's Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh says the Islamic Republic will continue to get around sanctions after the US government penalized dozens of Iranian and foreign companies for violating sanctions imposed on Tehran. - 9/4/14

Saudi Arabia Oil Sales to U.S. Imperiled by Shale Boom
After years of keeping the price of crude sold to the U.S. low enough to maintain market share, Saudi Arabia is losing ground as the shale boom leaves U.S. refiners with ample supplies of inexpensive domestic oil. -Bloomberg - 9/4/14

Volleyball: Dream World Championship starts for Iran as they beat U.S.
Iran provided another major hit at FIVB Men's World Championship in Poland as they claimed their second win in Krakow, this time in a thrilling five-setter over USA by 3-2 (25-23, 25-19, 19-25, 18-25, 17-15). - 9/3/14

All-female pop band to perform in Tehran
Setareye Qotbi (Polaris), an all-female Iranian pop band, will appear again to perform concerts at Tehran's Vahdat Hall on September 4 and 5. The band, which is composed of five singers and 12 musicians, will perform a repertoire of Persian, English, French, Arabic, and Hindi songs during the performances. - 9/3/14

Statue of Omar Khayyam to be set up in Manhattan
A statue of Persian classic poet Omar Khayyam (1048-1131) is scheduled to be installed in Manhattan, New York City. Created by the Iranian sculptor Hossein Fakhimi, the two-meter tall statue was sent from Tehran to New York on Monday evening. - 9/3/14

Caspian Sea as a source of disagreement between Iran and Russia
Russia has been increasingly successful in convincing littoral states to accept its plan to divide the Caspian Sea based on a formula of Modified Median Line (MML). Agreements using the Russian proposal as the basis of defining a legal regime for the Caspian Sea have been reached between Russia and Kazakhstan, Russia and Azerbaijan, and Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan, leaving Iran and partly Turkmenistan as the lone holdouts. -Bahman Aghai Diba - 9/3/14

Conservative wins Tehran City Council leadership
Mehdi Chamran, a conservative member of Tehran City Council, has received the necessary votes to take the helm of the capital's top administrative body. He was one of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's staunchest supporters during Ahmadinejad's term as Tehran mayor and during the first term of his presidency. - 9/3/14

Public execution in Mazandaran, Iran delayed by protests
The execution of a man in Mazandaran Province, northern Iran was cancelled as a result of protests by his family and friends at the scene of execution. The decision to postpone the execution was taken by the city's Security Council and judiciary officials. - 9/3/14

Sudan Expels Iranian Envoys, Closes Cultural Centers
Saudi Arabia, a key regional ally of the United States, has been locked in a contest with non-Arab Shi'ite power Iran for influence in the Middle East. The rivalry has effectively divided the region into two camps, with countries allied with either Saudi Arabia or Iran. -Reuters - 9/3/14

Iran's President Tells Clerics Internet Vital
Iranian President Hassan Rohani said Iran "cannot close the gates of the world for the younger generation." Iranian President Hassan Rohani has urged the country's clerics to be more tolerant of the Internet and new technologies. - 9/2/14

Necklaces inspired by Persian literature on display at Golestan Gallery
A collection of hand-made sets of necklaces, inspired by tales from classical Persian literature, is on display at Tehran's Golestan Gallery. "I study ancient Persian tales such as Haft Peykar and Mantiq at-Tayr a lot and my works are mostly inspired by these stories, besides my personal thoughts and experience," designer Reyhaneh Raei told Honaronline on Sunday. - 9/2/14

An American Jailes in Iran: Hekmati Family Hopes for His Release, Three Years after Arrest
Three years after his arrest in Tehran, US-born Amir Mirzaei Hekmati remains in prison. His family continues to hope that he will be released in time to see his father, who suffers from a terminal illness in the US. Hekmati's earlier charges of espionage have been changed to "cooperating with a hostile government," and his death sentence has been overturned, according to his lawyer, Seyed Mahmoud Alizadeh Tabatabaee. - 9/2/14

Iran Foreign Minister 'Optimistic' About Nuclear Talks
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says he is "quite optimistic" that a dispute over Tehran's nuclear program can be resolved by a November 24 deadline. Zarif on Monday held what he described as "good'' talks with European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton in Brussels. He also held separate talks with Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders. - 9/2/14

Germany, EU's leading exporter to Iran: Eurostat
Germany was the leading exporter of goods to Iran among the EU nations in June 2014, according to the EU statistics agency Eurostat. The European country exported 207 Euro million of goods to Iran in June 2014, an 88 percent rise compared to June 2013. - 9/2/14

Incoming EU chief diplomat upbeat on prospects for Iran nuclear deal
Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini, who has recently been appointed by the European Council to replace the UK's Catherine Ashton as the European Union foreign policy chief, says she is optimistic that Iran and the six major powers will strike a final nuclear deal soon. - 9/2/14

Former Iranian Oil Minister Summoned Over "Unhealthy Gasoline"
Massoud MirKazemi, who was oil minister from 2009 to 2011, is being accused of "acting against public health and well-being." The report indicates that representatives from the Ministry of Health and the Department of the Environment have been enlisted to investigate the charge. - 9/2/14

LECTURE: Recollections of Archaeology in Iran
Wednesday 17 September in London: Against a background of the close cooperation that existed between all the archaeologists who were working in Iran in the 1960s and 1970s, this lecture attempts to describe the activities of various of the British archaeologists who were working in different parts of Iran at this time. Sites of Iron Age to Achaemenid date will be given particular attention. - 9/2/14

New Sanctions Threaten Iran Nuclear Deal
On Aug. 29 the US Treasury added 28 Iranian individuals and entities to its ever-expanding sanctions list. Expectedly, Tehran denounced the decision. "They are in conflict with the spirit of talks. They are unconstructive in my opinion," said Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during an Aug. 30 news conference broadcast on State TV. -Esfandyar Batmanghelidj, LobeLog - 9/2/14

Iranian Women's Monthly Under Pressure From Hard-Liners
A newly launched women's monthly run by a prominent female editor has irked Iranian hard-liners, who have accused her of promoting "obsolete" feminist views and ideas that are un-Islamic. Iran's semi-official Fars news agency reported last week that Shahla Sherkat , editor of "Zanan-e Emruz," will be put on trial by Iran's Press Court on September 7. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 9/1/14

Basketball: Brazil Defeats Iran in FIBA World Cup
Brazil basketball team beat Iran 79-50 in Group A of the 2014 FIBA World Cup on Sunday evening. In the match held at the Palacio Municipal de Deportes de Granada, Brazil's Alex Garcia scored 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting. - 9/1/14

Iran Police Chief Stirs Controversy Over Women Working In Coffee Shops
Islamic Republic Police Chief Khalil Helali told reporters on Sunday that women are prohibited from working in coffee shops and traditional cafes. Helali's statements are being challenged by legal experts, who maintain that there is no legislation banning women from employment in coffee shops. - 9/1/14

Over 350,000 Iranians studying abroad: Education Minister
Ali Asghar Faani, who was briefing a gathering of teachers set to be dispatched to Iran's official schools abroad, said that his organization is planning to restructure the system governing its foreign missions and "make them more compatible with the cultural changes." - 9/1/14

Iranian activist lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh wins right to resume her law practice
Iranian lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh says an order issued by the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal gives her permission to resume practicing law. Nasrin Sotoudeh was arrested in 2010 and sentenced to a 20-year ban from practicing law. - 9/1/14

Is the lack of clarity about the Iran-Russia oil-for-goods deal intentional?
Nader Habibi unpacks the possible motivations for the mixed signals from Moscow and Tehran regarding a proposed oil-for-goods deal between the two countries. Both countries, he argues, face domestic opposition to the deal but want to maintain the possibility of a deal as a hedge against tightening Western sanctions. -Iran Matters - 9/1/14

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