» Russia playing Iran’s card
This editorial focuses on Russia’s policy towards Iran regarding Syria. The editorial opens by referring to Russia’s close ties with Iran and Turkey in the past recent months, adding that it did not last as Russia recently announced that foreign forces, including Iran, needs to leave Syria.
The editorialist then elaborates on the reasons why Russia has acted as such. Russia, unlike Iran, views Syria from a strategic standpoint, pursuing its geopolitical interests. Besides, while Iran considers Israel as a serious regional threat, Russia plans to extend its economic, military and political relations with Israel. It should also be noted that Russia was one of the first countries which recognized Israel, to say nothing of the fact that Russians constitute the largest group of immigrants as well as tourists traveling to Israel.
Ergo, Russia’s recent decision relates to the fact that Israel sees Iran’s presence in Syrian border as a threat to its national security, says the editorialist. Historically, Russia has always had a unilaterally beneficial relations with Iran, namely, it has stopped supporting Iran for more benefits elsewhere.
In conclusion, the editorialist warns that unless Iranian authorities think of a policy towards Russia which keeps welshing on its promises, Iran will be the major loser of war in Syria.
» JCPOA will not do miracle; think of people
The editorial of Asr-e Iran focuses on the nuclear deal [JCPOA] after the U.S. pullout and the fact that it cannot help to resolve the problems in the country.
According to the editorial, few weeks after the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA, it has become evident that this accord must be archived as a historical lesson, and Iran must stop negotiations with Europeans to preserve the nuclear deal. European Union cannot confront Washington with respect to JCPOA, and what is more, Europeans go further than Americans in exercising pressures on Iran regarding regional policies and slamming Iran for its defense capabilities.
The editorial continues: recently many famous European companies have intended to leave Iran after the U.S. pullout from the nuclear deal. For instance, CEO of Total announced that they will leave Iran if the U.S. doesn’t exempt this company from sanctions. Besides, many European banks have cut off their banking relationships with Iran.
The editorial adds: even though French President Emanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have both announced that they cannot force companies to stay in Iran, Iranian government officials still believe that they can continue the nuclear deal with Europeans.
The editorial concludes: these days, Iranian people are struggling with difficult livelihood issues. Unlike what the governmental statistics suggest, the price of essential goods has skyrocketed, while people’s purchase power has plummeted. The editorialist holds, it is about time Hassan Rouhani and people close to him realize that JCPOA will not do any miracle for them.
♦ IRGC member killed in Syria
Khalil Takhtinejad, an IRGC member from Hormozgan Province, was killed in Syria. Takhtinejad who was one of the so-called “Defenders of Shrine” was sent to Syria about a month ago.
♦ Europe Investment Bank rejects EU plan to work with Iran
Even though European commissioners would unveil their plan to encourage Europe Investment Bank (EIB) to invest in Iran, this bank’s officials have announced they won’t have transactions with Iran. EIB has been recently under pressure by EU to enter Iranian market and counter the impacts of the return of U.S. sanctions, but has not accepted EU plan.
As one of the EU officials has told Reuters, this bank which provides a huge part of its capital from the U.S. is not ready to enter the Iranian market due to the fear of facing U.S. secondary sanctions. EIB is in fact the financial arm of EU for providing financial services to the EU countries.
Fars news agency
♦ Lawmaker: Iran’s nuclear power must not decrease
Head of Parliament’s Energy Commission Freydoon Hassanvand said the Iranian parliament is ready to remove financial and legal problems of Iran Atomic Energy Organization in keeping the country’s nuclear power. Pointing out to the order by Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei in preparing the ground for uranium enrichment and reaching 190 thousand SWUs, Hassanvand stated that Atomic Energy Organization must immediately enforce the supreme leader’s order, and Iran’s nuclear activities must be resumed.
Head of Parliament’s Energy Commission emphasized that Iran’s nuclear power must not decrease, adding that Atomic Energy Organization must immediately start activities to achieve 190 thousand SWUs.
Parliament news agency
♦ PSA exiting Iran was no surprise, says parliamentarian
Aziz Akbarian, head of the Parliament’s Industries and Mines Commission, said it was clear that the French automaker PSA would leave Iran following the U.S. withdrawal from the JCPOA. Akbarian added that companies such as PSA follow the U.S., so their pulling out from Iran was no surprise.
Akbarian also pointed out that most automakers, including those of Germany, Korea and China, will discontinue their cooperation with Iran due to the same reason. Iran needs to minimize its dependence on foreign companies for its automotive industry in order to suffer less damages without them, stated Akbarian.
♦ Iranian activists slam judiciary-vetted attorneys
A number of Iranian human rights activists have condemned the judiciary for publishing a list of its trustworthy lawyers who have sole authorization to defend clients accused of security offenses. The list includes Hassan Tardast, a former judge who has issued hundreds of retribution sentences; Abdolreza Mohabati, deputy to Tehran’s chief prosecutor Saeed Mortazavi during the 2009 harsh state crackdown; and Reza Jafari, head of Special Prosecution of Cybercrime who was sanctioned by the European Union for violating human rights.
Iran-based prominent lawyer and human rights activist Nasrin Sotoudeh, in an interview with Campaign of Human Rights in Iran criticized the list of Judiciary-vetted attorneys, saying this means “saying goodbye to the institution of advocacy in Iran.”
♦ Lawmaker: Supreme leader’s order, turning point in Iran’s nuclear and strategic programs
Mohammad Javad Jamali Nobandegani, member of board of directors of National Security and Foreign Policy Commission in Iranian parliament, emphasized that the order of the supreme leader Ali Khamenei is a turning point for Iran returning to uranium enrichment. Pointing out to Khamenei’s order as to preparing the ground for uranium enrichment and achieving 190 thousand SWUs. Jamali Nobandegani said, “the supreme leader’s remarks are signs of power of Islamic republic of Iran, people and the 1979 revolution.”
On Monday, Ali Khamenei issued an order to Atomic Energy Organization of Iran to immediately make the necessary preparations for achieving 190 thousand SWUs within the nuclear deal with world powers (JCPOA). Khamenei said, “Iranian people and government cannot tolerate being both sanctioned and imprisoned with regard to nuclear activities.”
Hours later, Behrooz Kamalvandi, spokesperson of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, said that Iran will inform IAEA on Tuesday of starting the process of increasing the capacity for uranium enrichment.
Parliament news agency
♦ Kamalvandi: Iran to start producing UF6, UF4 gas; build centrifuge rotor factory
Spokesperson of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Behrooz Kamalvandi, announced that in a letter to be delivered to IAEA by Iran’s agency in Vienna, it will be stated that Iran will increase the necessary capacity for producing UF6 and UF4 gas and building centrifuge rotor factory. Kamalvandi added that within the framework of the JCPOA, Iran was supposed to achieve 190 thousand SWUs by the end of the 15-year program, but given Ali Khamenei’s remarks as to following up 190 thousand SWUs within the JCPOA, Iran has to take measures to accelerate the process for reaching that level sooner.
♦ French PSA auto industry to end cooperation with Iran
French PSA auto industry announced decision to terminate cooperation with Iran. PSA said this decision is made following new U.S. sanctions against Iran. In a statement issued on Monday, PSA, manufacturer of Peugeot and Citroen, has said the termination of cooperation of this company with Iran is to coordinate with U.S. laws. PSA sold 444,600 automobiles to Iran in 2017. This company, after German VolksWagon (VW), is the second biggest auto industry in Europe.
♦ Molavi Abdulhamid: Sunnis still suffer discriminations 40 years after 1979 revolution
Zahedan Friday mass prayers leader, Molavi Abdulhamid, says 40 years after the 1979 revolution, Sunnis are still facing serious discriminations in Iran. According to Molavi Abdulhamid, Iranian Sunnis want to be involved in their own destiny and be present in the country’s decision-making and administrative centers, as well as in armed forces.
Abdulhamid urged that Sunnis are severely suffering from discrimination and inequality, and by participating in presidential election in 2017, they showed they are after changes and removing discriminations.
♦ Former ambassador to Syria: Russia must not interfere in Syria’s domestic affairs
Now that Syria is in final stages of a seven-year-old crisis, the issue of military and advisory forces that are present in this country – either upon the request of Damascus or not – has become a matter of dispute. In this regard, some Russian officials have said it implicitly and explicitly that all foreign forces must leave Syria.
Former ambassador of Iran to Syria, Hossein Sheikholeslam, stated in this regard that Russia must interfere in domestic affairs of Syria, adding that “the issue of who is to stay or to go is within powers of Syrian government—nobody else”. He urged Syrian government wants Iran’s presence to continue, emphasizing the issue of Syria has nothing to do with JCPOA. Sheikholeslam stressed that Russia is after its own interests in Syria, not Iran.
♦ Crude oil swap from Kirkuk to Iran
After resolving the logistic issues, crude oil swap from Iraq to Iran started from Sunday. Tankers carrying Kirkuk’s crude oil discharge their shipments in Dareh Shahr reservoirs that have been assigned for this purpose by national oil products and distribution companies. According to the swap contract between Iran and Iraq, 30 to 60 thousand barrels of Kirkuk’s crude oil will be transferred to Iran by road tankers.
♦ Former intelligence minister: More unrests on way in 2018 or 2019
Heidar Moslehi, former intelligence minister under Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, predicted that there are more unrests on the way in Iran. Urging that Iranian regime must prepare itself to confront such unrests, Moslehi said even though the focus in 2009 unrest was on the presidential election, the “enemy’s” plan for 2018 and 2019 will focus on the supreme leader.
♦ Vaezi: Iran, Azerbaijan after peace and stability in region
Upon arrival in Baku, Mahmoud Vaezi, chief of staff to Iranian president, urged that Iran and Azerbaijan are after creating peace and stability in the region. Vaezi said the purpose of his trip to Azerbaijan was consultation and exchanging views regarding bilateral relations and regional issues, adding that Iran and Azerbaijan have very good relationship. According to Vaezi, during past five years, presidents of Iran and Azerbaijan have met 12 times and about 100 meetings have been held between high-ranking officials of Tehran and Baku.
Reformist politician: According to Islamic law, we can not pull out of JCPOA!
Mohsen Rohami, member of the Reformists’ Supreme Council for Policymaking, claimed from the perspective of Islamic law and according to clear instruction of Quran, “we are not allowed to pull out of the JCPOA [the nuclear deal]”. He added that Quran clearly stipulates, “Muslims must not violate any treaties with others in so far as the other side hasn’t breached it.”
Meanwhile, hardline newspaper Kayhan said even though the JCPOA has been blatantly violated by the other side to the nuclear deal, reformists are still trying to embellish this damaging deal.
♦ India’s Reliance Industries to halt importing oil from Iran
India’s Reliance Industries, the owner of the biggest refining complex in the world, intends to stop importing oil from Iran following the U.S. new sanctions. According to Reuters, Reliance’s move means that buyers will be forced to stop buying Iran’s oil.
Reliance’s decision will be enforced in October and November, following the U.S. pullout of the nuclear deal with Iran and Donald Trump’s order to resume sanctions against Iran. India has announced that it will not follow the U.S. sanctions, but companies related to the U.S. financial system will be fined if they do not follow these sanctions. Reliance is the biggest private refinery in India and is one of the most important sellers of gas to Iran.
♦ India’s Reliance, oil, gas,
Hossein Allah Karam reacts to being listed in US sanctions
U.S. Treasury Department announced a new list of sanctions against Iranian entities and individuals, for committing serious human rights abuses on behalf of the Iranian government. The sanctions target, among others, Hossein Allah Karam for acting on behalf of Ansar-e Hezbollah – a hardline group that has been involved in violent suppression of Iranian citizens and has collaborated with the Basij to violently attack Iranian students with knives, tear gas and electronic batons.
In response to these sanctions, Allah Karam said U.S. sanctions cannot have any adverse impacts on his personal, political, cultural, social life. He added sanctions cannot affect his foreign trips as he mostly goes to so-called “friendly countries” like Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq and Syria.
♦ 25% drop in Iran’s oil export to Japan
Iran’s oil export to Japan reached 33 thousand barrels per day in April, showing 25% decrease compared to the same period last year. Japan’s oil import from Iran had 85% drop in April compared to the previous month, in which 216 thousand barrels of oil were exported to this country.
♦ Lavrov: US policy to isolate Iran
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov believes that the U.S. has adopted the policy of isolating Iran. According to Lavrov, the U.S. hopes to “stifle Iran’s voice”, forcing this country to change its policies and thus create the necessary conditions for change in Iran. He urged that Moscow had previously suggested a security conference in the Gulf region, because currently a dangerous situation exists in the relationship of the countries of the Gulf region and Iran.
♦ Iran exported 2.7 million barrels of oil in May
Iran exported 2.7 million barrels of crude oil and gas condensate per day in May. Iran crude oil export was more than the average in May due to repairing domestic refineries. With return of refineries to production line, the export of crude oil will decrease.
In 2017, Iran exported 2.115 million barrels of crude oil per day on average.
Despite the U.S. pullout from the JCPOA, importing oil from Iran has not dropped yet. But some buyers have announced that they will revise their policies as to buying Iran’s oil.
♦ Brigadier-General Sharif: Missile is our red line
Head of intifada and Quds headquarter, Brigadier-General Ramazan Sharif, said missile program is Iran’s red line and is not negotiable. He added Iran will not negotiate with Europeans regarding its missile and defense program, and there will not be any openings in this regard. Ramazan Sharif asserted that “our defense weapon will be for defending our allies as well, and we will do anything for expanding and boosting its speed and accuracy.”