Brief on Iran

Brief On Iran – Newsletter, August 24th, 2015

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Brief On Iran – Newsletter
August 24th, 2015
  Iran- Human Rights (Women, Minorities, Ethnics)
Public Executions | Iran

  Iran Human Rights
  
On Tuesday August 18th two prisoners charged with rape were hanged to death in public in the province of Zanjan, according to the Justice Department in Zanjan. On Sunday August 16th a prisoner, identified as Omar Parastandeh Khial, with drug related charges was hanged to death in Shiraz’s Adel Abad Prison, according to the Baluch Activists Campaign group.
Iran Human Rights, Wednesday August 19 2015: On Tuesday August 18th two prisoners charged with rape were hanged to death in public in the province of Zanjan, according to the Justice Department in Zanjan. On Sunday August 16th a prisoner, identified as Omar Parastandeh Khial, with drug related charges was hanged to death in Shiraz’s Adel Abad Prison, according to the Baluch Activists Campaign group. Iranian authorities have not reported on Khial’s execution.
The identities of the two prisoners who were hanged to death in Zanjan have not been announced to the public. The prisoners were reportedly accused of the kidnap and rape of a nine year old child.
   The Tower
 Human Rights
  
 Despite proclamations that the nuclear deal with the P5+1 powers represents “a turning point for Iran,” Hamid Yazdan Panah, a lawyer and human rights activist, wrote that “the facts on the ground” show an increased rate of executions in the Islamic Republic, in a commentary published by Reuters today.
Since the election of President Hassan Rouhani in 2013, all talk of the opposition movement and human rights has been swept under the rug while human rights reports from inside the country confirm the true nature of this regime. Earlier this year a report by UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Ahmad Shaheed noted that “the overall situation has worsened” with respect to human rights.
Just weeks after signing the “historic” deal and more than eight months after signing an interim agreement, Iran is in the midst of what Amnesty International has referred to as an “unprecedented spike” in executions. Currently, Iran’s new “moderate” administration is on pace to hit a new 12-year high in executions. And Amnesty International has noted that while the regime officially claims that only 246 executions have taken place in 2015, this number is closer to 700 in reality.
Panah wrote that, in addition to the increasing number of executions, Iran’s judicial system is highly politicized and “executions … occur with little or no due process.” Sometimes prisoners are sentenced to death in proceedings that take a few minutes.
Additionally, the United Nations and some European countries give financial support to Iran’s corrupt judicial system.
   Iran Human Rights
  

 Four prisoners charged with murder have been hanged to death in Rajai Shahr Prison.

Iran Human Rights, Thursday August 20 2015: On the morning of Wednesday, August 19th four prisoners charged with murder were hanged to death in Rajai Shahr Prison, according to an informed source. The prisoners, whose names are not known at this time, were transferred to solitary confinement prior to their executions.
“Two days ago nine prisoners in Rajai Shahr Prison were transferred to solitary confinement, but for unknown reasons the execution of five of them has been delayed for now,” says the source.
The four executions on Wednesday morning have not been announced by the Judiciary’s Press Department or Iranian state media.
  Iran- Terrorism Activities (Middle East)
Iran on Saturday unveiled a new surface-to-surface missile it said could strike targets with pin-point accuracy within a range of 500 km (310 miles) and it said military might was a precondition for peace and effective diplomacy.
The defense ministry’s unveiling of the solid-fuel missile, named Fateh 313, came little more than a month after Iran and world powers reached a deal that requires Tehran to abide by new limits on its nuclear program in return for Western governments easing economic sanctions.
According to that deal, any transfer to Iran of ballistic missile technology during the next eight years will be subject to the approval of the United Nations Security Council, and the United States has promised to veto any such requests. An arms embargo on conventional weapons also stays, preventing their import and export for five years.
But Iran has said it will not follow parts of the nuclear deal that restricts its military capabilities, a stance reaffirmed by President Hassan Rouhani on Saturday.

Baku-APA.  The recent deal on Iran’s nuclear issue gives Tehran more power to support its allies in the region, a senior advisor to Iran’s supreme leader said on Saturday, APA reports quoting Xinhua.Iran will have “more power to support its friends in the region following the nuclear deal,” Ali-Akbar Velayati, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s advisor on international affairs, was quoted as saying.

Years ago, western powers tried but failed to topple the Syrian government. Nowadays, attempts to overthrow the Syrian government has become impossible with an even stronger resistance front against Israel, Velayati said.

More than 30 other officials including former Mosul governor Athil al-Nujaifi were also blamed in the report.
The militants seized Mosul in a sweep across north and west Iraq last year.
Mr Maliki, a Shia, is seen as having fanned sectarian tensions, leading to a growth of discontent in those mainly Sunni Arab areas captured by IS.
Hours earlier, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi cleared the way for a court martial of military commanders who abandoned their posts as another city, Ramadi, fell to IS in May this year.
The moves come as the current government continues a major campaign to combat corruption and mismanagement.
 
President Obama has been thinking a lot recently about his post-presidency. According to a detailed dispatch in the New York Times, he has been meeting with notable authors and business leaders over late-night dinners and discussing what he will do next.
High on his post-presidential to-do list should be regime change for Iran. No, Barack Obama should not press his successor to invade Iran and set up an occupation government. But the president should use his time after office to nurture and support Iran’s democratic opposition in its struggle against Iran’s dictator.
BRUSSELS – The ink was barely dry on a landmark agreement with Iran to limit its nuclear program before a German government plane packed with the nation’s economic elite touched down in Tehran.
They were just the first in a rush of European ministers and businesspeople flocking to a market that is poised to reopen after years of grinding sanctions. Upscale Tehran hotels are packed and tables at trendy restaurants are scarce as foreigners jostle for bargains, even amid uncertainty over whether President Obama can overcome congressional opposition to the deal.
The steady stream of visitors to Tehran is the latest sign of the Atlantic-wide divide between the United States and Europe, where there is scant opposition to the pact that aims to crimp Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Obama and Secretary of State John F. Kerry have warned detractors that they would be unable to reimpose a multinational trade embargo if Congress rejected the plans. The five other countries that helped broker the deal have also told Congress that they will not return to the negotiating table. The high-level trips show that U.S. leaders can’t even keep Europeans from booking tickets to Tehran ahead of the congressional vote, which needs to take place by Sept. 17.
 Iran- Nuclear Activities
Obama Legacy- Iran

  David Sanger and Michael R. Gordon
WASHINGTON – As President Obama begins his three-week push to win approval of the Iran nuclear deal, he is confronting this political reality: His strongest argument in favor of passage has also become his greatest vulnerability.
Mr. Obama has been pressing the case that the sharp limits on how much nuclear fuel Iran can hold, how many centrifuges it can spin and what kind of technology it can acquire would make it extraordinarily difficult for Iran to race for the bomb over the next 15 years.
His problem is that most of the significant constraints on Tehran’s program lapse after 15 years – and, after that, Iran is free to produce uranium on an industrial scale.
“The chief reservation I have about the agreement is the fact that in 15 years they have a highly modern and internationally legitimized enrichment capability,” said Representative Adam B. Schiff, a California Democrat who supports the accord. “And that is a bitter pill to swallow.”
  

LONDON — According to a draft document seen by the Associated Press, it appears that Iranian technicians — and not the International Atomic Energy Agency — will be taking the lead in collecting samples from the Parchin military complex to check for the presence of any trace amounts of nuclear material. This is the site in Iran whereconventional explosives testing possibly relevant to nuclear weapons research isalleged to have taken place more than a decade ago.Usually, IAEA staff would do the sampling themselves. So — assuming the Associated Press story is true, and the draft document reflects the final agreed measures — how come such a “managed-access” arrangement was granted to Iran this time?

It’s hard to be certain, but it may be because the IAEA’s track record under its previous head of safeguards, Olli Heinonen, is marred by the botched analysis of the Syrian site at Al Kibar. The Iranians may be insisting on leading the Parchin inspections themselves to make sure they, too, are not wrongly accused by the IAEA.

On Wednesday, The Associated Press published an instantly controversial report claiming that Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) had entered into a confidential agreement that allowed Tehran to carry out its own inspections at Parchin, a military facility where Iran is suspected of testing nuclear bomb detonators more than a decade ago.

The report claimed that under the agreement, IAEA inspectors would be prohibited from entering the site, where Iranian officials would be allowed to collect their own environmental samples.Iran would provide inspectors with photos and video of certain – but not all – sensitive areas at Parchin as well.
Changes in the text of The AP report led to speculation that the news agency had been selectively publishing or distorting parts of the confidential agreement between the agency and Tehran, which even US Secretary of State John Kerry acknowledged he had not personally seen during July congressional hearings.

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