♦ Lawmaker: Legislation to counter U.S. violation of obligations, most important step by national security commission
Murtaza Safari Natanzi, the member of National Security Commission, considered the legislation to counter the U.S. violation of obligations as the most important step of this commission in 2017. He called this legislation significant from political and security point of view.
Safari Natanzi added that recent unrests were also among the issues seriously discussed in National Security Commission. In these widespread unrests, many people took to streets all over Iran, chanting slogans against the Iranian regime and the supreme leader, Ali Khamenei.
Parliament news agency
♦ Lawmaker emphasizing on Iran’s independence
Kamal Dehghani Firoozabadi, deputy head of National Security and Foreign Policy Commission in the Parliament, urged that Iran will not exchange its independence with anything, emphasizing that “we do not follow the policies of the west and Europe, and move forward independently.”
Dehghani Firoozabadi said the armed forces of Iran will build any weapons necessary within the defense doctrine, stressing that “the west should know that our missile capacity is according to our preemptive power, and we will not negotiate with any countries in this regard.”
♦ Najafi: Not taken back resignation
Tehran Mayor Mohammad Ali Najafi said he has submitted his resignation to head of Tehran City Council and hasn’t taken it back. He added he will explain his reasons for resignation in the meeting of Tehran City Council on April 8.
Following the Woman’s Day ceremony held by Tehran municipality in which little girls danced, Najafi was summoned by Tehran prosecutor to give some explanations in this regard. He later resigned from his position.
♦ Iran exports to China, more than import
Head of Iran-China joint chamber of commerce said Iran had 39 billion tomans of the transaction with China, 52% of which was export and 48% import. Assadollah Asgaroladi added the government must increase tariffs on imported goods and must help the slogan of supporting consumption of Iranian goods by preventing smuggling of goods.
♦ Turkey to open office for regional export in Iran
An agreement was signed for opening regional export offices of Turkey’s Eskisehir industrial region in Germany, Russia, and Iran. Head of Eskisehir industrial region Nader Kupehli said this project is to increase the share of Eskisehir’s exporters, urging that “our objective is to increase this province’s export to $5 billion.”
♦ Discovery of 100 tons of narcotic drugs, drug precursors in 2017
According to Iran’s customs office, more than 100 tons of narcotic drugs and drug precursors were discovered in 2017, showing 400% growth. Numerous discoveries by customs officers during past year show that smugglers use different methods to neutralize monitoring by customs officers and are constantly changing these methods: embedding in inaccessible parts of trucks, babies’ clothes and mattress, packages of handicrafts, nuts and dried fruits, etc.
♦ Rouhani: Iran-Turkmenistan should use capacities to develop joint cooperation
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called Turkmenistan “brother and friend” to Iran, emphasizing that the two countries must use their extensive capacities to develop joint cooperations as this is both nations’ demands. After signing 13 documents of cooperation between Iran and Turkmenistan, Rouhani said: “there were constructive and useful talks at the highest level among officials, and we reviewed all cases with political, cultural and economic capacities in both countries; we made good decisions to the advantage of both countries.”
Pointing out to common religious, historical and cultural denominators between both nations, Rouhani asserted: “we are determined to use all existing capacities for developing and deepening joint cooperation.”
♦ One of the Girls of Enghelab Street condemned to one-year imprisonment
Maryam Shariatmadari, one of the protestors to forced hijab known as “Girls of Enghalab Street”, was condemned to one year of discretionary imprisonment in the criminal court of Tehran Province. Maryam Shariatmadiri, according to her lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh, has been charged with “encouraging corruption through taking off hijab” and “encouraging women and girls to take off hijabs.”
Sotoudeh emphasized on “unfairness and illegality” of conviction of Maryam Shariatmadari, saying, “I’d like to compare this sentence with that of Saeed Toosi who was charged with child abuse last year. Basically, such severe sentences can be found in patriarchal societies like Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.”
Saeed Toosi, Quran reciter who had performed in the presence of the supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, was charged with child abuse. Even though he had confessed to his own guilt, he was eventually exonerated.
Nasrin Sotoudeh said the judiciary system in Iran is trying to “create terror in the society” by such sentences. Widespread protests against forced hijab started last year.
♦ Makarem Shirazi: Stop corrupt people from entering Qom
Nasser Makarem Shirazi, Shia Marja, called for controlling immigration to the city of Qom, saying that “infiltrators, smugglers, and criminals shouldn’t be allowed to enter Qom.” This Shia Marja asked Rouhani government to consider city of Qom as different from other cities of the country, saying “city of Qom isn’t just a sacred city for Iranians, but it belongs to world of Shia and Islam, and if special attention is paid to Qom, it is serving Iran and Islam.”
♦ Increase in academic cooperation between Iran and Germany in 2017
Deputy of science minister in international affairs announced that more than 6,000 Iranian students are studying in Germany, adding that educational and scientific cooperation between these two countries will increase this year. Salar Amoli said Germany is one of Iran’s targeted countries for developing educational and scientific cooperation, and the cooperation of the two countries which started four years ago is moving forward very well.
He urged these bilateral cooperation include: sending students for 6 to 9 months periods, sending professors for short-term periods, German professors going to Iran, teaching Persian literature in Germany, etc.
♦ Rouhani: Strengthening relations with neighboring countries is government’s principal policy
Tuesday morning Iranian president Hassan Rouhani left Tehran for Ashgabat on an official invitation of Turkmenistan president. Before leaving Tehran, Rouhani told reporters that he will visit Turkmenistan and Republic of Azerbaijan, urging that one of the main objectives of 11th government was a close relationship with neighboring countries, and this policy will expedite in the 12th government.
Rouhani pointed out to the fact that Turkmenistan and Republic of Azerbaijan have land and sea borders with Iran, adding that the relationship of Tehran with Ashgabat and Baku is at a good level, and there are a lot of capacities for developing comprehensive relations with them.
♦ Russia-Iran relationship not strategic, says analyst
Shoeib Bahman, expert in international affair and Russia’s issues, believes that basically, Russians understand that Americans are willing to impose arm sanctions to disrupt balance of power in the region to the advantage of their own allies; Russians’ main objective is to maintain the balance of power, which is why they are willing to have arm deals with regional countries including Iran.
Bahman added that Iran-Russia relationship is not strategic at all, and it cannot be categorized in any framework of strategic relationships. Despite all close stances and alignments in regional and international developments between Iran and Russia, they can be considered tactical partners.
♦ Unveiling achievements in heavy water
Spokesperson of Iran Atomic Energy Organization, Behrooz Kamalvandi, announced the unveiling of achievements in heavy water on April 9, National Day of Nuclear Technology, adding that they are negotiating with other countries for exporting more heavy water.
Kamalvandi said that Iran is exporting a part of produced heavy water to the U.S., Russia, and a number of other countries as before, urging that the decision is made to use heavy water in producing other products in future.
♦ House arrest of Mousavi, Karroubi not to be lifted by April 2
Following the publication of news in the social media as to lifting house arrest of Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi by April 2, a source close to the family of Mir-Hossein Mousavi denied such news, saying that so far, the promise to lift the house arrest has remained unfulfilled.
Mousavi and Karroubi, leaders of Green Movement, as well Mousavi’s wife Zahra Rahnavard, have been under house arrest since 2011.
♦ Iranian ambassador meets Oman foreign minister
Nouri Shahroodi, the Iranian ambassador to Oman, met and talked with Yusuf bin Alawi, this country’s foreign ministry. In this meeting, Yusuf bin Alawi thanked and appreciated the “warm welcome” of Iranian president during his recent trip to Iran, promising to follow up on agreements made on this trip.
Nouri Shahroodi urged the relationship between Iran and Oman is at its peak adding that “they have unprecedented bilateral interactions and regional and international coordination.” He emphasized that the ground for economic and trade relations between the two countries is growing.
♦ Rouhani: Changes in the world cannot impact stability, security in Iran
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said at the end of a meeting of heads of branches that the changes that are taking place in the world today cannot have any adverse impacts on stability, security, production, and unity in the country.
During the press conference after the meeting, Rouhani said taking care of people’s economic life and livelihood, especially workers and villagers, was emphasized in today’s agenda. He added that creating jobs and fighting poverty are two important principles for his government.
♦ Boroujerdi: Continuing JCPOA in doubt if the U.S. withdraws
Head of National Security Commission in the Parliament, Alaeddin Boroujerdi, believes that if the U.S. decides to pull out of the nuclear deal (JCPOA), there will be serious doubts as to Iran continuing JCPOA’s path as before. Boroujerdi urged that given the fact that EU’s policies are usually influenced by the U.S. pressures, there are serious doubts about “our continuing as before if the U.S. decides to withdraw from the deal, bring back the sanctions and put the pressure on Europe.”
Boroujerdi said even though the Europeans have so far announced their commitment to JCPOA, the U.S. usually puts pressure on financial and banking systems, and the Europeans cannot tolerate such pressures in actuality.
Parliament news agency
♦ Dollar price soared in the Iranian market
In recent changes in Iranian foreign currency market, the price of U.S dollar passed 5,000 tomans. Changes in foreign currency market are still underway, and the rates are changing.
This is the first time the price of the dollar has passed 5,000 tomans, breaking all the records. Currently, the official price for a dollar is 4,800 tomans, but the real price of a dollar is 5,023 tomans.
♦ Gilan governor office: Fire in forests under control
Head of Crisis Management in Gilan’s governor office announced the fire that started on Saturday has been controlled in most forests, except in Sihakal. It has been said that warm wind had spread the fire and a number of people have been trapped in a fire. According to ISNA news agency, some local people have evacuated the region. Head of Crisis Management in Gilan’s governor office said the cause of the fire is not clear yet, “but given the warm wind, it is probable that it has been due to the carelessness of tourists.”
On Saturday, due to severe wind and storm in other regions in northern Iran, at least three people lost their lives.
♦ Kamalvandi: 2nd, 3rd power plants in Bushehr to become operational in 8 years
Spokesperson of Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Behrooz Kamalvandi, made explanations about “nuclear achievements” in Iran. He said Atomic Energy Organization had taken different measures including activities in Bushehr power plant.
Kamalvandi added that “it has been more than a year that we have started digging the ground for two new power plants, but it is not finished yet.” He asserted that a number of radiopharmaceuticals produced in the country are considerable, and they are not only used for treating almost one million patients inside Iran but are exported to a number of countries.
Young Journalists Club
♦ Prospect of Iran-Iraqi Kurdistan relationship
A representative of Iraqi Kurdistan, Nazem Dabagh, congratulated the beginning of Iranian new year, predicting a bright prospect for the relationship between Iran and Iraqi Kurdistan in the upcoming year. He added, “my prediction is that the relationship between Iraqi Kurdistan and Iran will comprehensively advance. In the new year of after the referendum, Iraqi Kurdistan has tried to take its relationship to where it was and even improve it.”
♦ Karroubi’s son: House arrest not removed due to authorities’ will
Mehdi Karroubi’s son rejected remarks of Behrooz Nemati, member of Parliament’s board of directors, as to his father’s letter prevented removing house arrest of leaders of Green Movement (Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi), adding that their house arrest has “no basis but authorities’ will.”
Mohammad Taghi Karroubi, son of Mehdi Karroubi, told Saham news that three members of security forces, in similar remarks to Nemati, had told his mother that his father’s letter to Iranian supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, has prevented removing house arrest. Rejecting such remarks, Karroubi’s son said, “so far the house arrest of leaders of the Green Movement has had no basis but will of authorities, and judiciary and securities officials have reiterated this point again and again.”
In an open letter to Iran’s leader, Mehdi Karroubi had considered him responsible for the social, cultural, economic and political conditions in Iran, asking him to prepare the grounds for reforms in Iran.
♦ Tavakoli: Ahmadinejad should not talk about freedom of speech
Member of Expediency Council, Ahmad Tavakoli, said arresting Hamid Baghaee and Esfandiar Rahim Mashaee (both of whom are close to former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) is related to financial charges and has nothing to do with freedom of speech.
Tavakoli’s remarks are related to Ahmadinejad’s letter to the Iranian leader, Ali Khamenei, in which he had said arresting Baghaee and Mashaee is a violation of freedom of speech. He added that “Ahmadinejad who didn’t accept the Parliament’s ratification shouldn’t be talking about freedom of speech.”
♦ Hajarian: It is the supreme leader who is the real president
Reformist activist Saeed Hajarian believes that as the “president” refers to the person who is the leader of the people, it is the supreme leader who is the president in Iran. According to the Iranian constitution, Hajarian goes on to say, the real president is the supreme leader, as it is he who is commander-in-chief and appoints the head of the judiciary. And it is he who makes the president’s decree effective and, through the Guardian Council, qualifies the candidates of the legislative branch.
♦ Izadi: Iran won’t appease in regional issues
Expert in international affairs Foad Izadi said Iran will not only not negotiate about the JCPOA, but will not also appease in the regional issues. He added that the supreme leader’s recent remarks raised the issue of confronting the Americans and defending the country against their excessive demands.
Izadi urged, “the U.S. officials think that they, through pressure and sanctions, can get concessions from Iran, but they are mistaken about this.”
Young Journalists Clubs
♦ Jahangiri: U.S. “stupid method” against Iran
First Vice President, Eshaq Jahangiri, pointed out to the fact that the U.S. “political games” are a “stupid method” against Iranian people, saying that “Trump cannot be a threat against us, and Iranian people must be treated with respect, logic, and reasons.”
Jahangiri urged that in May, the U.S. will show if they are trustworthy or not, adding that “international atmosphere is important for us, and we are after having cultural interactions with the world.”
The U.S. president, as a part of the nuclear deal with Iran, must periodically agree to waive the nuclear sanctions against Iran; the next waiver deadline is May 12.
Fars news agency
♦ Afghanistan foreign minister: Kabul government not to allow its soil to be used against Iran
Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani urged, in his meeting with Kamal Kharazi, that his government will not allow its soil to be used in measures against Iran. In this meeting, bilateral relationships, Afghanistan security, and economic cooperations were discussed.
Fars news agency