Payvand Iran News: Archives ... February 2003
Business & Economy | Energy & Oil Art | Film & Music | Events Heritage & History Philanthropy
Sports | Politics For Peace | Society & Culture Literature & Books Health & Medicine
Rights | Women | Diaspora Travel | Environment & Geography Science & Education Middle East & Asia
Home | Contact | About | Archive
Bookstore | Persian Calendar
twitter | facebook | RSS Feed

Zohreh Jooya on youtube


Directory
Iran Business Source
Iran Travel Source
Directory
Fale' Hafez

Media

(Persian)
Norouz | Rooz Online | Ettela'at
Hamshahri | Iran | Jomhouri Eslami
Kayhan London | Kayhan | Quds
Salam Toronto
(English)
Iran Daily
| Tehran Times


Tavoos Art Magazine

(Radio, TV)
IRIB | BBC | VOA | Radio Farda
(Agencies)
Fars | IRNA | ISNA | Mehr

Weather
Tehran | Mashhad | Tabriz
Abadan | Esfahan | Shiraz
Satellite Image


Film on Soraya's life finished in Morrocco
LUX VIDE has finished the shooting the last scenes in Morrocco of film "SORAYA" with Anna Valle in the title Role of the Persian Princess who was forced to divorce from the Shah of Iran after failing to give him a heir to the Peacock Throne. -Darius Kadivar - 2/28/03

Iran ranks 11th among world automobile manufacturers
Director of 'Iran Khodro' Automobile Company for Planning Affairs Hojjat Moeini said here Thursday that Iran ranks 11th among the world's automobile manufacturers. He said previously the country occupied the 14th place. - 2/28/03

Iran reformers' turn-out hopes
Reformist supporters of Iranian President Mohammad Khatami are hoping to achieve another major victory in Friday's nationwide local elections. -BBC - 2/28/03

Candidates in Iran Jostle to Make a Difference
Khalegh Abbassi Fashami is one of more than 200,000 candidates running for election on Friday to municipal councils that were billed by the reformist president, Mohammad Khatami, as a great step toward democracy when first voted into office four years ago. -New York Times - 2/28/03

Iran elections 'can heal wounds'
Iran's pro-reform President Mohammad Khatami said he hoped Friday's local elections would heal some of the wounds caused by years of bitter political infighting in the Islamic Republic. -CNN - 2/28/03

Dissidents Compete in Iranian Local Vote
For the first time in two decades, liberal dissidents were on the ballot for Iran's local elections on Friday thanks to a power shift in the committee that oversees elections in this conservative society. -AP - 2/28/03

Iraq 'to begin missile destruction'
Iraqi officials have said they could start destroying their al-Samoud II missiles by Saturday, as demanded by chief United Nations weapons inspector Hans Blix. -BBC - 2/28/03

The L'OREAL-UNESCO "For Women in Science" Awards - Dedicated to Improving the Position of Women in Science
The L'OREAL-UNESCO program FOR WOMEN IN SCIENCE today honored twenty women scientists from all corners of the globe. From Iran, Shiva SEYED FOROOTAN - Molecular Biology - is among the 2003 Fellows. -CNW - 2/28/03

Pope discusses Iraq crisis with Aznar and Iranian
Pope John Paul stepped up his peace offensive on Thursday, meeting the Spanish prime minister and a senior Iranian official as a decision on a U.S.-led war against Iraq neared. -Reuters - 2/28/03

Artist unveils bridge collapse memorial plan
An artist (Shahla Rahimi-Reynolds, who came to America from Iran 26 years ago) unveiled final plans Thursday for the memorial to victims of an Interstate 40 bridge collapse, presenting a sculpture for the monument that represents "life at the moment it ended, and when it went to eternity." - 2/28/03

Art by nine Muslim women featured in poignant, powerful show
All of the women now live in the United States but were born and raised -- or lived for extended periods -- in Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Kenya or Lebanon. -Minneapolis Star Tribune - 2/28/03

Talk of Arab 'Democracy' Is a Double-Edged Scimitar
Dr. Erian also noted that Iran, an Islamic, if not Arab state, was "more democratic than any other in the region" but has been branded by Mr. Bush as part of what he views as an "axis of evil." -New York Times - 2/28/03

ITALY-IRAN: Berlusconi-Khatami look to strengthen ties
Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi and the Iranian deputy prime minister, Reza Khatami, have both spoken of the need to strengthen the "good" economic ties between Italy and Iran. Khatami spoke in favour of Berlusconi's stance on Iraq and invited te Italian Premier to visit Teheran. -AGI - 2/28/03

Youngest ayatollah: US is 'naive' about Tehran politics
Ayatollah Abbas Hosseini Ghaem-Maghami, politician and theologian, considers himself a bridge between Iran's moderates and radicals. At 34, he is the country's youngest ayatollah. He has written scores of books and articles. And he once ran for parliament, albeit unsuccessfully. -Financial Times - 2/28/03

Caspian meeting participants issue joint communique
The participants at the 8th session of deputy foreign ministers of the Caspian Sea littoral states who discussed a proposed convention on the Caspian Sea legal regime on February 26-27 issued a joint communique as the session wound up its work on Thursday. - 2/28/03

U.S. Congressional Committee Blasts Iran
The House Committee on International Relations held a hearing on Wednesday entitled ĀgRussiaĀfs Policy toward the Axis of Evil: Money and Geopolitics in Iraq and Iran.Āh -NIAC - 2/28/03

Iranian Cyclist Detained at Border Wins Political Asylum
An Iranian man who cycled 46,000 miles around the world for six years on a personal peace mission only to be arrested in the Arizona desert for entering the United States illegally was granted political asylum yesterday by an immigration judge. -New York Times - 2/28/03

Foreign journalist miss the beat in Tehran!
Most foreign correspondences that come to Iran and stay awhile, have one thing in common. They end up living in the North East side of Tehran in Aaghdasih, Kameradienh, North Pasdaran, Niavaran and of course Farmanieh. These are generally known as Shemiran. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 2/27/03

UN rights watchdog attacks Iranian jails
The target of UN criticisms - the judiciary and security forces - are controlled by hardline conservative clerics who have blocked measures proposed by Iran's reformist president, Mohammad Khatami, and his allies in parliament who were elected in landslide victories. " -Guardian - 2/27/03

Solitary Cell: A Tomb-like Place
I am not writing to reveal a hidden mystery, nor is enmity with anybody or any group my intention. Revenge is a word that I have averted for many years now and today even the thought of it makes me tremble. So what is compelling me to tell about the story of the pain that its remembrance can produce only pain? The story that until now I have neither written or said a word about it to anybody. -Masoud Behnoud, Tehran - 2/27/03

A Visit to Tehran's Behesht Zahra Cemetery (photos)
If you pay a visit to Iran after being away for many years, you'll probably have many reasons to visit Behesht Zahra, the most famous cemetery in Iran. At least we did. -Ali Moayedian - 2/27/03

Kremlin: No Pipes Along Caspian Bed
The Kremlin's envoy to the Caspian region said Wednesday that Moscow would seek to ban pipelines along the bottom of the sea, creating a possible obstacle for a U.S.-backed project to send Caspian oil to a Turkish port. -Moscow Times - 2/27/03

Iran's legal system 'flawed'
A team of United Nations human rights experts has concluded a visit to Iran noting serious shortcomings in the country's justice system. -BBC - 2/27/03

Iran local polls key test for reformists, liberals
Liberals aim to support democratisation efforts, reforms while conservatives are keeping low profile. -Middle East Online - 2/27/03

Thousands mourn Iran crash victims
Thousands of people attended public funerals in two Iranian cities Thursday for the elite troops killed in a plane crash last week, state-run Tehran radio reported. -CNN - 2/27/03

IRAN: Afghan repatriation nears 400,000 mark
The number of Afghans who have returned to their homeland from Iran is approaching the 400,000 mark, says the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). - 2/27/03

Bush spells out plans for post-war Iraq
Toppling the Iraqi president, Saddam Hussein, would sow the seeds of democracy and peace in the Middle East, the US president, George Bush, said last night. -Guardian - 2/27/03

Rights activist testifies on Iranian gay asylum-seeker
Goudarz Eghtedari arrived in Japan earlier this month to testify at the nation's first trial to focus on the sexual orientation of an asylum-seeker. -Daily Yomiuri - 2/27/03

IAEA Officials Return from Iran
Officials from the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency return from Iran Thursday after examining a nuclear facility at Natanz that some fear could be used to make material for atomic bombs. Iran's nuclear activities raise fear the country is working on nuclear wepons. -VOA - 2/27/03

Lesson from history: 1955 Baghdad Pact
The Baghdad Pact was created in 1955 by Britain, Iraq, Turkey, Iran and Pakistan with the aim of strengthening regional defence and preventing the infiltration of the Soviet Union into the Middle East. -BBC - 2/27/03

The rise of California caviar
The Engstroms predict that in three to five years, the output of their operation and of another operation run by a large company called Stolt Sea Farm, will be producing 40,000 pounds of sustainable caviar a year. Northern California will become the new worldwide caviar hub. -San Francisco Examiner - 2/27/03

Avalanche claims 20 lives in northern Iran
In a massive avalanche in Kandavan, northern Iran on Wednesday, 20 travellers heading for northern Iran lost their lives and four citizens from Noshahr were injured. - 2/27/03

Has Reza Pahlavi sold out Iran?
Reza Pahlavi, because of his family name, makes a particularly easy target for "guilt by association." We should not allow such tactics exclude him from the political race for the future of Iran. That would be most unfair. -Mohsen Moshfegh - 2/27/03

U.N. Team Criticizes Iranian Judiciary
French jurist Louis Joinet and his commission colleagues visited prisons in three cities, interviewed political prisoners and met with judiciary officials during a 12-day trip. The team was scheduled to leave today. -Azadeh Moaveni, Times - 2/27/03

Iran's population projection reduced to 105 m in 2050
The population of Iran will be 105 million in 2050 with people living longer and having a median age of 40 years old, twice the current average, according to the latest revised figures from the UN Population Division. - 2/27/03

Iran's Election Turnout Worries
Daily urges measures to restore the people's confidence in the electoral process; Karroubi warns against discouraging turnout in municipal polls; EC chairman calls elections Iran's most determining issue - 2/26/03

Iran preparing to turn back Iraqi war refugees
Walk through the Hejrat Three Refugee Camp here, and it quickly becomes clear why Iran -- home to more refugees than any other nation -- declared this week that it will turn back most Iraqis who try to take refuge in the country if war breaks out. -Boston Globe - 2/26/03

Jane Wallace Interviews Seymour Hersh
JANE WALLACE: It might be safely said that the one country for whom the war on terror has been a bombless bonanza is Pakistan. In a matter of two weeks they went from being an international pariah, to being our new best friend. The aid started flowing. It is flowing in the billions. Are they worthy of our friendship and our aid, the Pakistanis? -PBS - 2/26/03

The Caspian: While Envoys meet in Baku, Kazakhstan announces military navy!
Iranian special envoy on Caspian Sea affairs Mehdi Safari arrived in Baku early Wednesday to attend the 8th session of deputy foreign ministers of the Caspian Sea littoral states. - 2/26/03

US Lawmakers: Syria, Iran Are Threats to Israel's Security
U.S. lawmakers who have just returned from a visit to Israel are calling for a sharper focus on the role of Syria and Iran in supporting international terrorism, and potential threats of weapons of mass destruction. -VOA - 2/26/03

Daily says al-Qaeda behind Iranian military plane crash
The English-language daily `Tehran Times' on Wednesday highlighted speculations that the last week crash of an IRGC plane could have been a sabotage by the al-Qaeda terror network. - 2/26/03

Daily deplores fate of Iranian judges
Iran News' on Wednesday deplored the fate and living standards of Iranian judges, calling for higher perks and additional benefits to help them lead more comfortable and decent lives. - 2/26/03

Iran to sell hidden nude masterpieces
Tehran Museum director says parliament approved sale of 15 to 30 Western works in bid to build up art collection. -Middle East Online - 2/26/03

Non-Aligned Nations Oppose War on Iraq
A summit of 116 developing countries suspicious of U.S. military dominance united Tuesday behind calls to give Baghdad more time to disarm after Iraq's vice president vowed cooperation with U.N. inspectors. -AP - 2/26/03

Police center to provide increased security for tourists
For the first time in Iran a police center will be set up to protect tourists who visit the historical city of Isfahan. According to a survey, 93 percent of the tourists who visited the city were happy with their visits. - 2/26/03

Iranian ambassador to UN: Region can't take more war
We haven't heard much lately from Iran, Iraq's large and strategically important neighbor to the east. But make no mistake: the leadership in Tehran is waiting and watching the showdown with Iraq as closely as anyone. -CNN - 2/26/03

Los Angeles City Council Adopts Resolution Opposing U.S. Invasion of Iraq
Mayor James K. Hahn signed the antiwar resolution late in the day, making Los Angeles the biggest city to take a stand against a unilateral U.S. invasion of Iraq. About 100 other cities, including Chicago, Detroit and Philadelphia, have approved similar measures. -Common Dreams - 2/26/03

Turkey set to admit 62,000 troops
The Turkish Government has handed parliament a motion to permit 62,000 US troops to be deployed in Turkey for six months. -BBC - 2/26/03

Spain, Iran seek pope's ear on Iraq crisis
Pope John Paul will meet the Spanish prime minister and a senior Iranian official on Thursday to discuss Iraq, ensuring that the Vatican stays firmly in the diplomatic spotlight as a decision on war approaches. -Reuters - 2/26/03

Decisions, decisions
While we agonise about whether to go to war, the US has moved on to a different question: what next? -Guardian - 2/26/03

Draining the life from an ancient culture
This south-east corner of Iraq once was Al-Hawizeh, the great sprawling marshlands of Mesopotamia straddling Iraq's border with Iran. But now these villagers are among the last of the Madan, the 5000-year-old civilisation that is better known as the Marsh Arabs. -Sydney Morning Herald - 2/26/03

Meanwhile, back in Tehran
When he arrived in Tehran last weekend, Mohamed ElBaradei, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, was taken to President Mohammed Khatami's office and the two exchanged kisses like old friends. -Ha'aretz, Israel - 2/26/03

Shiites' doomed uprising in Karbala
Answering a call from the then US President Bush, Iraqis rose up to oppose the dictator in 15 of Iraq's 18 provinces. In the end, the US President left them to their fates. -ABC Online, Australia - 2/26/03

112 talented student have left Iran: press report
Persian daily Siasat-e Rouz (Politics Today) here Tuesday quoted the head of 'Young Scholars Association' that over 112 student who have won gold, silver and bronze medals in various scientific olympiads around the world have left the country and are enrolled in leading US and European universities. - 2/26/03

Iran fears Washington more than Saddam
Amid the rumbling rhetoric and anti-U.S. diatribes issued from Tehran in recent weeks over a possible U.S.-led war on Iraq, wily former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani summed up Iran's position most clearly. -Reuters - 2/26/03

Visiting expert sees long road for improving Iran-U.S. relations
In a guest lecture Monday, Feb. 24, Dr. Mark J. Gasiorowski outlined the troubled and often contradictory history of Iran-U.S. relations following Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution. -San Francisco State University - 2/26/03

Will US attack Iran or not!
European scholar: US will not wage war against Iran; US will not dare attack Iran so long as Khatami is in power: MP; UK rejects Israeli call for US to target Iran after Iraq. - 2/26/03

Why War with Iraq? What should Iranians do?
If neither WMD nor concern for human rights and democracy are the prime motive for this war, then what is? Is it, as some opponents of the war believe, for oil? -Reza Ghorashi - 2/25/03

Conflict and catchphrases
Faced with obstruction from the French and Germans, ransom demands from the Turks, and opposition from millions of demonstrators around the world, the desired invasion of Iraq has fallen behind schedule. But not to worry. The process of selecting the next candidates for regime change is already under way. -Guardian - 2/25/03

Iran wins England karate title
All-star karate (wado ryu) team of Iran grabbed the top title of the 5th England international event on Sunday night. - 2/25/03

Iran's first woman judge starts work in Isfahan
Iran's first woman judge has started work at a bench of the State Retribution Organization in Isfahan, capital city of the central province of Isfahan. - 2/25/03

Quakes hit Iranian cities of Razan and Semnan
moderate earthquake shook the western city of Razan in the western Hamedan province Monday, with no reports of casualties or property damage yet. - 2/25/03

Medicine without Bounds or Organ-therapy in Intensive Care Units
Better for my pain to stay hidden from the eyes of claimed doctors / To be healed by the concealed treasure of the divine - 2/25/03

Relief groups step up efforts to prepare Iraq
The UN has $30 million to address the humanitarian needs of 23 million Iraqis. -Christian Science Monitor - 2/25/03

Archaeology across Mideast endangered by threat of war
War in Iraq would halt archaeology not just in that country but across the Middle East, experts say, and could result in some of the earliest cities of Mesopotamia being bombed or looted into ruins of ruins. -New York Times - 2/25/03

US Arms Control Hypocrisy is the Real Threat to Security
John Bolton was in Israel last week doing his job, fighting the spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Bolton is the U.S. Undersecretary of State for Arms Control. But the way he was doing his job is enough to make you laugh -- and cry. -Common Dreams - 2/25/03

Circles of Hatred
Washington needs Turkeyís help to fight Iraq. But Iraqís Kurds despise the Turks as much as they loathe Saddam -Babak Dehghanpisheh, Newsweek - 2/25/03

Iran launches Arabic-language satellite news channel
Iran has launched an Arabic-language satellite news channel for a two-month trial period to see how it fares in the battle for Arab opinion against Al-Jazeera and other giants. -Middle East Online - 2/25/03

Events Complicate Opening
Islamic Group Stirs Trouble and Turkey Plans Actions to Deter Kurdish Autonomy -Farnaz Fassihi, WSJ - 2/25/03

Political camp encourages people to partake in city council voting
The Islamic Revolution Mojahedin Organization in a statement issued Monday called on the Iranian masses to massively take part in the second round of the Islamic city and village councils. - 2/25/03

Rumsfeld's Account Book: Who Armed Saddam?
You have to give Defense Secretary Rumsfeld this credit: he's a risk taker, and he's damned brassy about it. -CounterPunch - 2/25/03

Short Story: My Lucky Star
I should be very careful. The old woman had said: "Beware! Even when you go to the toilet! You should be extremely alert!" -Shahrokh Tondro Saleh - 2/25/03

Jailed Jews were given `holiday,' not pardon,
Five Jews convicted of spying for Israel have been freed for a brief break from prison and not pardoned as was previously reported, a judiciary source and a Jewish parliamentarian said yesterday. -Ha'aretz - 2/25/03

Deputies prepare bill on proceedings to hold referendum in Iran
25 Majlis deputies on Monday prepared a single urgency bill to clarify the proceedings for requests to hold a referendum, the press reported here on Tuesday. - 2/25/03

Dissidents condemn use of torture by Iran
Ezatollah Sahabi is a warhorse of the revolution. He began his dissident activity half a century ago after the Central Intelligence Agency fomented a coup that overthrew the government and reinstated the monarchy. -New York Times - 2/24/03

Big Brother US driven by 'fanatic fundamentalism': Iran
Iranian leader Mohammad Khatami issued an extraordinary assessment of US foreign policy today, accusing the United States of positioning itself as a violent "Big Brother" driven by "fanatic fundamentalism". -Sydney Morning Herald - 2/24/03

Five foreign firms to bid for phase 11 of South Pars gas field
Salehiforuz told IRNA on the sidelines of the 12th International Oil, Gas and Petrochemicals Forum that British Petroleum (BP), French TotalFinaElf, Malaysian Petronas, Norwegian Statoil and Italian Eni are in stiff competition to win the bid for the development project. - 2/24/03

Iran's options in case of a US was with Iraq
On Wednesday, February 21, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC, held a panel discussion entitled ďAfter Reform: Iranís Political Alternatives.Ē The panelists included Tehran-based political analyst Siamak Namazi who addressed Iranís options in the possible US war against Iraq. -NIAC - 2/24/03

U.S. Congressman Paul wants to stop Iranian students
Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) introduced a new bill at the end of January, H.R. 488, asking that student visas to terrorist supporting countries be banned. -NIAC - 2/24/03

Blair tries to head off Iraq revolt
Tony Blair will move to avert a potentially crippling Labour backbench revolt over Iraq this week by heralding a new joint US-UK resolution to be tabled in the next 24 hours as part of "a push for peace". -Guardian - 2/24/03

Iran cleric coins Islamic St Valís Day
Hojatoleslam Mohammad-Ali Zam, cultural deputy of Tehran, had proposed the wedding anniversary date of the first Shiite Imam Ali and his wife Fatemeh Zahra, as the day of love and kindness. -Deutsche Presse Agentur - 2/24/03

Iran's Islamic Azad University signs agreement with Britain's Leeds University
The agreement stipulates for the two academic institution to hold joint in curriculums in graduate and post-graduate levels in such diverse fields as Education, English, International affairs, Law and Business Administration- and its sub-specialties-. - 2/24/03

Release of five Iranian Jews clouded by concerns over future
This weekís release from prison of five Iranian Jews resulted not from a change of heart by the regime in Tehran, observers say, but because of a political and economic calculation that requires a burnished national image. -JTA - 2/24/03

The Iran Connection
Is Tehran in cahoots with Al Qaeda? And if so, why doesnít Washington do something about it? -MSNBC - 2/24/03

29 disabled dead in clinic over 50 days: Daily
Some 29 mentally and physically disabled people who had been newly transferred to a rehabilitation clinic in Tehran have died in a period of 50 days, an Iranian daily reported here on Monday. - 2/24/03

MP stresses moves to impeach Kharrazi
Member of the Majlis Economic Commission Hossein Anwari here Sunday stressed the move to impeach Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi, saying that under present conditions, any talks with the Iraqi regime would not be in the national interest. - 2/24/03

Greece and Turkey Sign Gas Pipeline Deal
Greece and Turkey agreed Sunday to construct a pipeline linking natural gas producers from the Caspian Sea region with the European market. -AP - 2/24/03

Treatment by INS still haunts immigrant
An East Bay dentist from Iran was thrown in jail after obeying the agency's signup call -Oakland Tribune - 2/24/03

Iran needs closer look at foreign investments
Advisor for Organization for Investments, Economic and Technical Assistance of Iran (OIETI) Mehdi Dalvand said on Sunday that Iran should take a closer look at benefits of foreign investments "other than its employment dimension." - 2/24/03

Five Iranian girls torch themselves to death: press
Five young girls have succumbed to their injuries after torching themselves in several villages in the southern city of Shiraz since their families beat them up and prevented them from going to work, press said Sunday. - 2/24/03

Iranian Filmmaker Gets Under Skin of Homeland
It took Rakhshan Bani-Etemad 17 years and three rewrites to get what turned out to be her most successful movie past Iran's Islamic revolutionary censors -- and most of her documentaries have never been shown in her homeland at all. -Reuters - 2/24/03

Pro-Reform Iranian Journalist Freed
Mohsen Sazegara said Sunday that he was freed the night before from Evin prison, north of Tehran, after his health began to decline from a hunger and medicine strike. -AP - 2/24/03

Iran hardliners block cleric's medical checks
Iran's Revolutionary Guards prevented Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, the country's leading clerical dissident, from travelling to a Tehran hospital for a heart check-up, his son told Reuters on Monday. -Reuters - 2/24/03

Iran: Critic Arrested in Tehran
A prominent critic of Iran's government was arrested in Tehran's international airport today. Qassem Sholeh-Saadi, a former parliament member, was arrested by Iranian security forces after his arrival in Tehran on a flight from Paris. -RFE - 2/24/03

US raises fears on nuclear Iran
The top US official for arms control is to visit Russia this week to underscore concerns over Iran's nuclear programme following an inspection by the head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog, who said he was struck by the level of sophistication he had seen. -Financial Times - 2/24/03

Outspoken journalist Mohsen Sazgara released from jail
"He is ill. He was freed from Evin prison after five days of detention and was immediately hospitalized by his family," his wife said. - IRNA - 2/23/03

Iran Fears U.S. Aims to Reshape Mideast
Kharrazi said Iraq must be stripped of weapons of mass destruction but voiced anxiety about what he called a hidden U.S. agenda in the region - 2/23/03

Top Kurdish officials warn of clashes if Turkish troops cross in northern Iraq
Kurdish officials in northern Iraq warned Sunday of clashes between Turks and Kurds should Turkey follow through on its plan to send thousands of troops into the region in case of a U.S.-led war against Iraq. - AP - 2/23/03

Drug addiction basis of spread of AIDS in Iran
Speaking at the 'Tuberculosis Seminar,' he added that currently 20,000 people are HIV positive throughout the country. - IRNA - 2/23/03

US rejects Iranian demand for damages over war-hit oil rigs
The United States on Friday rejected Iran's demands to the UN International Court of Justice for damages over the destruction of oil platforms by US forces during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war. - AFP - 2/23/03

5th Tehran International Auto Fair ( 1-5 July 2003) - Web Site
This fair has been held since 1999 as the most comprehensive industrial trade fair in Iran. The initiators of the fair are: Ministry of Industry & Mines, Iran Industrial Development & Renovation Organization (IDRO), Iran Automakers Association (IAA), Iran Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association (IAPMA), Automaker groups and companies like: Iran Khodro Industrial Group, SAIPA Industrial Group, Sapco and Sazeh Gostar Co. IDRO Int'l Trading co. is the executor of the fair - 2/23/03

Saddam's life a tale of fear, thuggery and survival
An admirer of Stalin and Churchill, Iraqi leader trusts few people - 2/23/03

Iranian women mountaineers to climb Mt. Everest
four male mountaineers will accompany the women's team, predicting that it will take them three months to climb the Everest. IRNA - 2/23/03

Inspectors in Iran Examine Machines to Enrich Uranium
International inspectors visiting Iran this week were shown a network of sophisticated machinery to enrich uranium, spurring concerns that Iran is making headway in its suspected program to develop nuclear weapons, Western officials and international diplomats said today. - New York Times - 2/23/03

Iran gives UN nuclear pledge
"The use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes and socio-economic development is the national right of every country," Mr ElBaradei was quoted as saying. - BBC - 2/22/03

Gunmen kill nine Shi'ite Muslims in Pakistan
Unidentified gunmen killed at least nine Shi'ite Muslims and wounded eight as they headed to evening prayers in Karachi on Saturday, police and hospital officials said. - Reuters - 2/22/03

ElBaradei: Iran to provide information on nuclear facilities
"This is something I welcome. It is a sign of greater transparency," International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Mohamed ElBaradei said at the end of a two-day visit to Iran to exchange views on the country's nuclear energy program. - Haaretz Daily - 2/22/03

Can Bush Bear Any Burden But Not Pay The Price?
What precisely is the justification for the Anglo-American proposal to invade Iraq and remove Saddam Hussein from power? - The Straits Times - 2/22/03

50 bodies recovered from plane crash
Officials from the elite Revolutionary Guard told the TV station that search operations, which have been hampered by winds, fog and rain, would continue Saturday. - AP - 2/22/03

Iran Holds More Journalists in Jail Than Any Other Country in the Middle East
Seok Hyun Hong, President of the World Association of Newspapers (WAN) and Gloria Brown Anderson, President of the World Editors Forum (WEF), which represent 18,000 publications in 100 countries, have sent a letter to Ayatollah Mahmoud Shahroudi, Head of the Judiciary of Islamic Republic of Iran expressing serious concern at the arrest of journalist Mohammed Mohsen Sazegara. - Baku Today - 2/22/03

Police arrest Iranians wanting prisoners' release
A U.N. human rights team arrived in Iran last week to examine arbitrary detentions in the Islamic Republic on the first visit after seven years. - Reuters - 2/22/03

U.S. Would Remove Iranian Opposition in Iraq
The United States will "give no quarter" to the Iranian opposition based in Iraq if U.S. forces invade the country, a U.S. official said Wednesday. -Reuters - 2/21/03

Book Review: The Law and Politics of the Caspian Sea in the Twenty-First Century
Caspian Sea, the largest Lake in the world, that is also called Khazar Sea and Mazandaran Sea, is currently the point of heated discussions and contention among now five countries surrounding it, preceded only by two, namely Iran and UUSR till the early 90's. -Davood Rahni - 2/21/03

After Iraq, does U.S. have other targets?
Given the enmity between Israel and its Arab neighbors, it's not surprising that many in the Arab world think attacking Iraq is just the first step in a U.S.-Israeli plot to control the entire Middle East. -St. Petersburg Times - 2/21/03

US charges 'Jihad financers'
The authorities in the United States have indicted a Palestinian university professor with financing and supporting Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad. -BBC - 2/21/03

UN begins Iran inspections
The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohammed ElBaradei, and a team of UN inspectors have arrived in Iran to assess its nuclear programme. -BBC - 2/21/03

Russia warns of pressure on inspectors
Igor Ivanov, Russian foreign minister, on Thursday warned that "very strong pressure" was being exerted on United Nations weapons inspectors in Iraq, "in order to provoke their departure from Iraq, or to force them to present material to the Security Council that can be used as a pretext to start military operations". -Financial Times - 2/21/03

Give it up for the 'Axis of Evil Tour'
"I don't want to go to war with Iraq," he says onstage, "because Iran sounds a lot like Iraq, and if there's one president who can mess that up, it's President Bush. He's not too good with the alphabet." -Christian Science Monitor - 2/21/03

Shia Muslims say they will rebel against Saddam if US invades
Shia Muslims of southern Iraq will mount an uprising against Saddam Hussein as soon as US and British troops invade, according to travellers reaching Iraqi Kurdistan from government-controlled territory yesterday. -Independent - 2/21/03

Indo-Iran feasibility study on oil pipeline outside Pakistan: Naik
India's Petroleum Minister Ram Naik said on Thursday that there was no question of speaking with Pakistan on the proposed Indo-Iran oil pipeline as Tehran and New Delhi have decided to undertake a feasibility study for an offshore pipeline which would be outside Pakistan's exclusive economic zone (EEZ). - 2/21/03

The Iraqi Opposition's New Worry: The U.S.
Iraq's fractious opposition groups are agreed on one thing as they convene this week just miles from hostile Iraqi territory to plan a postwar government: They're against what they say are U.S. plans to occupy Iraq after toppling Saddam Hussein. -Farnaz Fassihi, WSJ - 2/21/03

NIAC Receives $60,000 in Grants from Tides and OSI
The National Iranian American Council (NIAC) has recently been awarded $60,000 in grants to help fund civic education workshops for Iranian-American communities around the country. - 2/21/03

Iranian Opposition Says Tehran Plans to Trick IAEA
The Iranian opposition in exile said Thursday Tehran had hidden equipment at a nuclear facility in central Iran in an attempt to deceive U.N. inspectors visiting the site this week. -Reuters - 2/21/03

Bad weather hampers search for victims of Iran plane crash
Strong winds and bad weather Thursday hampered search for the bodies of 302 people who were crushed to death aboard a Russian-made Ilyushin aircraft Wednesday evening near this southeastern Iranian city. - 2/21/03

Overloading may have contributed to crash of Iranian transport
Bad weather is being cited as the prime cause of Iranís worst air disaster, in which an Ilyushin Il-76 military transport aircraft crashed in a mountainous region of southeast Iran yesterday evening, killing all 302 people on board. However, a glance at Janeís reference data suggests that overloading of the aircraft may well have been a contributory factor. -Janes - 2/21/03

Central Asia: India Forging Stronger Regional Military Ties
An Indian military delegation is expected to visit Dushanbe soon to firm up plans for a joint military exercise, the first such war games by Indian troops in Central Asia. The move is in keeping with New Delhi's initiative to forge stronger ties with the region. -RFE - 2/20/03

Group Alleges New Nuclear Site in Iran
As international inspectors prepare to visit two recently discovered nuclear sites in Iran this weekend, an Iranian opposition group plans to reveal today details of a new site that they say houses equipment for enriching uranium for possible use in nuclear weapons. -Washington Post - 2/20/03

US threatens to cancel Turkey's military aid
The US on Wednesday warned Turkey it would cancel a multi-billion-dollar aid package if Ankara did not immediately allow the US army to deploy troops intended for a military strike against northern Iraq. -Financial Times - 2/20/03

The Origins of the Bush Iraq War Plan
The 1998 Rumsfeld & Wolfowitz Memo to Clinton -CounterPunch - 2/20/03

Liberal seed sprouts in Persian Gulf
Bahrain experiment offers hope for region -San Francisco Chronicle - 2/20/03

Weather hampers Iran crash salvage
Snow storms and freezing gales are hampering efforts to retrieve bodies and search for clues at the site of Iran's worst air crash. -BBC - 2/20/03

Last five Jews released from Iranian prison
Bar Osher, chairman of the Committee to Save the Jews of Iran, described the release of the last five imprisoned Jews as a holiday and said the decision demonstrated the success of his group's efforts. -Ha'aretz, Israel - 2/20/03

War on Two Fronts
Under U.S. battle plans, Turkey will occupy north Iraqóantagonizing the Kurds -Babak Dehghanpisheh, Newsweek - 2/20/03

Bush's War Timetable Unraveling
The Bush administration's determination to keep to a tight timetable that would see its forces ready to go to war against Iraq by early March is in danger of coming unstuck. -Common Dreams - 2/20/03

Oil cartel ready to lift output ceiling
Leading members of Opec are ready to remove the oil cartel's output ceiling in the event of a war with Iraq. -Financial Times - 2/20/03

'Axis of evil' films to screen in US
A series of films from countries deemed by President George Bush as "the axis of evil" are to be screened in the US. Iraq, North Korea and Iran will be represented at Duke University in North Carolina's film series. -BBC - 2/20/03

MP: New year's budget extends rls one trillion to IT development
MP from Kashan and Aran-Bidgol Hassan Tofiqi declared here on Wednesday that rls one trillion is allocated to the development of Information Technology (IT) in the budget of the new Iranian year (starting March 21). - 2/20/03

Iran, Italy to build, launch Mesbah satellite
Iran and Italy are to build and launch the `Mesbah' satellite, according to a deal signed here on Wednesday. Mesbah satellite is expected to be launched in the next two years. - 2/20/03

Iran blocks pilgrims and speeds work on camps
Iran has closed border crossing points for Shia Muslim pilgrims visiting shrines in Iraq and is increasing work on camps that could accommodate 200,000 refugees, officials said on Wednesday. -Financial Times - 2/20/03

Iranians despise Saddam, worry about Washington
If there is one thing Iranians and their government agree on, it is the desire to see the back of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. -Reuters - 2/20/03

Iran plagued by poor aircraft safety
Two decades of sanctions by the West against Tehran have left the country with a fleet of mainly ageing planes, often fitted with unofficial spare parts. -BBC - 2/20/03

U.S. Sees Democracic Glimmerings in Iran
The State Department says there is a flowering of democracy in Iran that sets it apart from Iraq and North Korea, the two other members of President Bush's ``axis of evil.'' -AP - 2/20/03

Pro-Reform Journalist Mohsen Sazegara Detained in Iran
prominent pro-reform journalist who has described the hard-line establishment as dictatorial was detained at home Tuesday, according to his son. - 2/19/03

Iranian-backed forces cross into Iraq
Iranian-backed Iraqi opposition forces have crossed into northern Iraq from Iran with the aim of securing the frontier in the event of war, according to senior Iranian officials. -Financial Times - 2/19/03

Sadegh Hedayat Centenary Celebration in Tehran
I had to get myself to Tehran's House of Artists last Monday night, despite the fact that Tehran's normally bad traffic jam was even more terrible and moved even slower due to a sudden snow fall since earlier that morning. The ceremony was to start at 7:00 pm. it was to celebrate Sadegh Hedayat's Centenary in Tehran on his birthday. -Syma Sayyah, Tehran - 2/19/03

Apolitical Craze-Sapiens
Isn't it strange and even shocking that while there are anti-war demonstrations all over the world,..., there is almost no popular reaction in this country as the immediate neighbor of the now 'invaded' Afghanistan and the 'going- to be- invaded land of' Iraq? -Roya Monajem, Tehran - 2/19/03

Iran vows its nuclear program peaceful -ElBaradei
"I have been promised that they would like to be fully transparent and that they would like to demonstrate their nuclear program is fully dedicated to peaceful purposes," Mohamed ElBaradei, director-general of the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency, said in an interview. -Reuters - 2/19/03

Iran-backed forces add to US challenge
The movement into northern Iraq of Iraqi Shia opposition forces backed by Iran underlines the growing complexity of the task facing the US as it plans its military overthrow of the Baghdad regime and tries to shape a future government to replace it. -Financial Times - 2/19/03

Life is better as a boy, street girls find
In a country where girls and women are required to cover their heads and conceal the shape of their bodies from the age of puberty, some girls have taken to disguising themselves as boys. They cut their hair short, wear loose-fitting men's clothes and speak as little as possible. -New York Times - 2/19/03

Path of a Pipeline (Part Two: Code of the Kalashnikov)
The Blood of Massacred Turkish Kurds Holds a Fearful Lesson for Those Who Would Flee Iraq -Village Voice - 2/19/03

Khatami backs his minister over Iraqi FM's visit
President Mohammad Khatami on Wednesday reaffirmed his support for embattled Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi, who is facing an impeachment motion by parliamentarians over Iraqi FM Naji Sabri's visit to the Islamic Republic last week. - 2/19/03

U.S. Struggles for U.N. Support on Iraq
The overwhelming opposition to the Bush administration's policies on Iraq - voiced in the Security Council and in the streets of world capitals over the weekend - set back plans for the introduction of a new resolution Wednesday, U.S. and British diplomats said. -AP - 2/19/03

Iran says would confront U.S. jets in its airspace
Iran's defence minister said on Wednesday its forces would "confront" any U.S. aircraft that used its airspace during possible strikes on neighbouring Iraq. -Reuters - 2/19/03

Iraq's neighbours urge peaceful route
Iraq's neighbours yesterday pleaded with the United Nations Security Council to pursue a peaceful resolution of the crisis, warning that hostilities could have dire regional consequences. -Financial Times - 2/19/03

Chinese automaker set to produce cars in Iran
SAIC Chery Automobile Co., one-fifth owned by General Motors Corp.'s main Chinese partner, said Wednesday that it would start making cars in Iran, seeking fresh markets abroad as competition heats up at home. -IHT - 2/19/03

EU understands Iran's need for nuclear energy
The European Union said Wednesday that it understands the needs of the Islamic Republic's nuclear program for peaceful purposes but advised Tehran to sign an additional IAEA protocol to remove doubts. - 2/19/03

Iran's "Under the Moonlight" grabs top award at the KL film fest
Iranian movie "Under The Moonlight" won the Best Overall Award at the end of the two-day inaugural Kuala Lumpur World Film Festival here last night. - 2/19/03

Experts warn of heavy quake losses in Tehran
Head of the International Seismographic Research Center affiliated to the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology, Mohsen Ghafouri Ashtiyani said that according to specialized studies, the faultlines around Tehran are sliding and gathering energy and there is a strong likelihood of an earthquake striking the Iranian capital. - 2/19/03

Over 270 people killed in Iranian military plane crash
At least 270 people were killed Wednesday evening after an Iranian military plane, on a domestic flight, crashed near the central city of Kerman, an official said in this southeastern city. - 2/19/03

US plan for new nuclear arsenal
The Bush administration is planning a secret meeting in August to discuss the construction of a new generation of nuclear weapons, including "mini-nukes", "bunker-busters" and neutron bombs designed to destroy chemical or biological agents, according to a leaked Pentagon document. -Guardian - 2/19/03

Bush Blocks Deal Allowing Cheap Drugs for World's Poor
George Bush's close links with the drugs industry were last night blamed for the failure of talks in Geneva aimed at securing access to cheap medicines for developing countries. -Common Dreams - 2/19/03

The view from Iran: anxious about war in a region that might explode
When it comes to the threat posed by Saddam Hussein, just ask the neighbours. Iran lost 600,000 people in its war with Iraq in the 1980s, many of them to chemical and biological weapons. -Sydney Morning Herald - 2/19/03

Iran considers Russia's assistance in building Bushehr's 2nd reactor
A delegation of the Russian Nuclear Energy Ministry is on a brief visit to Iran, for discussing bilateral cooperation on the said project, it was announced here on Monday. - 2/18/03

Iranian MP criticizes WTO for rejecting Iran's membership
Kolaei along with a number of other Iranian MPs are now representing Iran to a joint meeting of European Parliament and the Inter-parliamentary Union in Vienna. - 2/18/03

Rezazadeh voted Iran's `Champion of Champions' in 2002
Association of Sports Writers, Reporters, and Photographers released the names of the best sportsmen of the country in 2002. - 2/18/03

200,000 In San Francisco Anti-War Demonstration
Most marchers were still blocks away from San Francisco's Civic Center Sunday and missed the passionate words of the activists and actors, rabbis and imams who spoke at the big rally. - 2/18/03

Sharon says U.S. should also disarm Iran, Libya and Syria
In a meeting with U.S. Undersecretary of State John Bolton yesterday, Sharon said that Israel was concerned about the security threat posed by Iran, and stressed that it was important to deal with Iran even while American attention was focused on Iraq. -Ha'aretz, Israel - 2/18/03

Lawyer rejects blasphemy charge against Aghajari
Outspoken university professor, Hashem Aghajari's lawyer has rejected charges of blasphemy against his client after the Iranian Judiciary announced that the veteran intellectual, whose death sentence was quashed last Friday, may face the same punishment during a new trial. - 2/18/03

Photos: San Francisco Marches for Peace
Most marchers were still blocks away from San Francisco's Civic Center Sunday and missed the passionate words of the activists and actors, rabbis and imams who spoke at the big rally. - 2/18/03

Israel worried Iran could benefit from Iraq war
The Israeli establishment, political and military, hopes the approaching American attack on Iraq will change the Middle East, but is concerned Iran might take advantage of the war to strengthen its status in the region and accelerate development of nuclear weapons. -Ha'aretz, Israel - 2/18/03

Iranian dissident is warís first casualty
It is not unlikely that the autonomous Kurdish area in northern Iraq will witness an influx of fleeing Mujahideen cadres in the next few days. Meanwhile, a Mujahideen delegation is already touring European capitals in a quest for a safe haven for Rajavi, his wife Maryam and other senior cadres -Ali Nourizadeh, Daily Star - 2/18/03

Time for reformists to reflect, revise their policies: daily
Iran Daily' on Tuesday stressed that it is time the once popular advocates of amelioration in the country reflect upon their deeds and come up with some new workable polices to deliver the goods, boost the flagging morale of society and create an equilibrium between what they say and do. - 2/18/03

EU issues 'last chance' warning to Iraq
Europe's leaders patched up their divisions over Iraq on Monday night and delivered a surprisingly tough warning to Saddam Hussein to seize the "last chance" to disarm or face war. -Financial Times - 2/18/03

Immigrant's dream torn apart after allegation
Father who left Iran several years ago worries about implications of terrorist link -Montreal Gazette - 2/18/03

Iranīs only female football official quits
Iranīs sole female football official, Parastou Younchi, has resigned after the director of the Iranian football federation said football was a male sport, an Iranian womenīs website said Tuesday. -AFP - 2/18/03

Turkey seeks assurances from US
Ankara wants $30 billion from Washington to cover potential damages from an attack by Iraq. -Christian Science Monitor - 2/18/03

Science and Arts Foundation's Star Schools Project in Tehran
SAFís newest project, the Star Schools Project, is designed to provide ten schools based on south Tehran with faster Internet access through a wireless connection. - 2/18/03

Iraq halts visit of Iranian pilgrims to holy sites: press
Iraq has stopped letting Iranian pilgrims visit the holy sites in that country on the grounds of security concerns, press Tuesday cited an MP as saying. - 2/18/03

Iran will not go to US for Wrestling bout if fingerprinted
Head of Iran Wrestling Federation Mohammad Reza Taleqani said here Monday that if the US government insists on fingerprinting the Iranian Free style National Team upon their arrival in the US, "then the team will not be sent to take part in 2003 World Free-style Wrestling Championship." - 2/18/03

Iran academic sent back to death court
The Iranian university professor whose death sentence for apostasy was quashed last week is to be retried by the same court that ordered his execution. -BBC - 2/18/03

Tehran municipality denies World Bank has reneged on loan
Tehran Municipality denied on Sunday press reports that the World Bank has reneged on its promise to provide loan to the metropolis Tehran. - 2/17/03

Iran MPs attack minister over Iraq
Impeachment proceedings have begun against Iran's foreign minister following a meeting last week with his Iraqi counterpart Naji Sabri. -BBC - 2/17/03

East Meets West
EAST Meets West has an ominous ring to it these days, but the phrase had wholly benign connotations at the Festival Hall last Wednesday as Iranian musicians merged with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for a colourful night of Persian culture combining music with everything from rugs to the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. -Times, UK - 2/17/03

Oil falls sharply
Oil prices fell sharply on Monday, correcting from fresh two-year-highs hit last week, while European Union leaders gathered for an emergency summit to try to resolve deep divisions over whether to wage war on Iraq. -CNN - 2/17/03

Kurds Hope U.S. Bombs Hit Militants, Not Home
In an address to the United Nations Security Council on Feb. 5, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell displayed a satellite photograph of what he described as a poison factory and terrorist camp that has received support from both the Iraqi government and Al Qaeda's terrorist network. -New York Times - 2/17/03

Gross national revenue up 4.3 percent in March 2001-2002
Based on the Central Bank of Iran's (CBI) statistics, gross domestic product (GDP), excluding oil, rose by 5.8 percent to rls 51.368 trillion, taking fixed prices in the year 1369 (1990-1991) as the base. - 2/17/03

Court hears Iranian claim against US
The International Court of Justice has begun hearings into a demand by Iran for the United States to pay compensation for oil platforms it destroyed 15 years ago. -BBC - 2/17/03

Eduard Shevardnadze: Georgian Nuclear Scientists Working in Iran
A number of Georgian scientists, including nuclear physicists and aircraft engineers, are working in Iran on private contracts that have not been authorized by the government, Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze revealed last week. -Rosbalt, Russia - 2/17/03

Reformers seek to heal wounds of backsliders, says daily
The reason why the main reformist front has not nominated any former Tehran councilor to its electoral list for the upcoming local council elections is that it is taking stock of who are the true and false defenders of democratic reform without necessarily impeding the reform movement, `Iran Daily' suggested on Monday. - 2/17/03

Stock market fever grips Iran as share prices soar
While leading stock markets in New York, London and Tokyo are suffering their worst bear run for decades, Tehran's small bourse has just recorded its fourth successive year of stellar growth. -Reuters - 2/17/03

UN human rights team in Iran after 7-year absence
A U.N. team has begun examining arbitrary detentions in Iran on the first visit by human rights experts to the Islamic Republic for seven years, the United Nations said on Sunday. -Reuters - 2/16/03

Iran 'rounding up' al-Qaeda suspects
Iran says it has arrested and deported more than 500 people suspected of links to al-Qaeda. -BBC - 2/16/03

Millions Give Dramatic Rebuff to US War Plans
Weekend protests worldwide by millions of anti-war activists delivered a stinging rebuke to Washington and its allies on their hard-line advance towards war. -Common Dreams - 2/16/03

Iran seeks return of historical artifacts from world museums
Iran National Museum here Saturday slammed a declaration released by 18 of most famous world museums on a decision not to return the pieces belonging to the world's oldest civilizations. - 2/16/03

Khatami: Tehran's opposition to war does not mean support for Baghdad
Commenting on the evil consequences of the war in the region, Khatami noted that the repercussions of the war would plunge the entire region into a deep crisis. - 2/16/03

Iran bids to build itself world's major gas producer
The country has already sealed several deals, totalling 10 billion dollars, with the likes of TotalFinaElf, BP and ENI, leaving the United States miffed since it maintains a unilateral sanction against the Islamic Republic. - 2/16/03

Why is Britain so committed to this war?
How can the British be so totally committed to American foreign policy in the Middle East - where they have much longer and deeper experience - when it is so rash and dangerous, and at odds with British interests? -Guardian - 2/16/03

Two killed, 10 injured in Iran prison mayhem: press
Two prisoners were killed and 10 others seriously injured during a riot which broke out at a main prison in the central city of Isfahan and lasted 12 hours - 2/16/03

Iran Wants No Mass Destruction Arms in Middle East
Iran said Sunday it wanted the Middle East to be completely free of weapons of mass destruction and accused Washington of applying double standards on the issue in the region. -Reuters - 2/16/03

Iran lifts death sentence on students' hero
"The death sentence against Aghajari has been revoked by a majority of votes by the review judges. Three out of four of the judges voted to revoke the sentence," said Ayatollah Mohammad Sajjadi, one of the judges who heard the appeal in the holy city of Qom. -Guardian - 2/15/03

UN team on arbitrary detentions heads to Iran
A team of United Nations experts on arbitrary detention is set to begin a two week field mission in Iran that will include meetings with judicial magistrates as well as visits to several of the country's prisons. -UN - 2/15/03

Call for Congressional Inquiry into INS Registration Heeded - Compromise on Mccain Amendment
The Conference between the Senate and the House on the omnibus appropriations bill has left opponents of the NSEERS program with a small but important victory. -NIAC - 2/15/03

Iran's Hope
If and when it comes, a military campaign in Iraq would be the third to be waged in the service of the Pax Americana at Iran's doorstep. -Wall Street Journal - 2/15/03

One million. And still they came
It was the biggest public demonstration ever held in Britain, surpassing every one of the organisers' wildest expectations and Tony Blair's worst fears, and it will be remembered for the bleak bitterness of the day and the colourful warmth of feeling in the extraordinary crowds. -Guardian - 2/15/03

Millions join anti-war protests worldwide
Millions of people worldwide are joining in demonstrations against a possible US-led war against Iraq. -BBC - 2/15/03

President Khatami inaugurates Phases II and III of South Pars
President Mohammad Khatami inaugurated the second and third phases of the South Pars development projects in Assalouyeh in the southern province of Bushehr on Saturday. - 2/15/03

Iran 'renews' Rushdie death sentence
Iran's hardline Revolutionary Guards have renewed the death sentence on British author Salman Rushdie issued 14 years ago by the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. -BBC - 2/15/03

Iran to start gas exports to Nakhichevan by March 20
Iran is to start exporting gas to the autonomous Republic of Nakhichevan by the end of the current Iranian year - 2/15/03

Iraqi Kurds face uncertain future
Governed by two rival factions, the Iraqi Kurds have now lived under the protection of a UN no-fly zone for more than decade. But their unique position means they may have the most to lose. -CBC, Canada - 2/15/03

Anti-war march 'to be UK's biggest ever'
The London demonstration, which is currently estimated to be 750,000 people strong and could eventually attract 1m, began ahead of its scheduled starting time -Guardian - 2/15/03

Iran out of Bush's new spin on 'axis of evil'
The United States now distinguishes between Iran and the other countries that President George Bush lumped together in an "axis of evil" and does not plan to target the Islamic republic after the likely war in Iraq. -Robin Wright, LA Times - 2/14/03

Why young runaways head to Tehran?
Young runaways find dark side when they find themselves faced with drugs, prostitution to survive in Tehran. -Middle East Online - 2/14/03

A film industry faced with 'a circle of traps'
A complicated web of government censorship and economic restrictions is starving the Iranian new wave -Globe & Mail, Canada - 2/14/03

From Iraq to Iran's past and future
Before we know, Iran will find a new neighbour to its west. Democratic? We will see about it, but most likely federal in structure, if not in name. This would bring about many gradual changes in the centralized, or perhaps super centralized, country of Iran where control over provinces is historically deemed to be important. -Hooman Moradmand - 2/14/03

Poem: The view from above
Bits of fire, carried by the wind, / vanished in the air, / seven astronauts shattered. / It's romantic, you say,.. -Leylanaz Shajii - 2/14/03

FILM (Abadan): Lots of buzz but no screening
There was one movie at the centre of the buzz at Tehran's 21st international film festival this past week - its title was on the lips of all the directors and critics, and in the pages of all the newspapers. But no festivalgoers actually got to see Abadan -Globe & Mail, Canada - 2/14/03

Israel fears war may benefit Iran
Israeli officials are warning the United States not to allow Iran to be the main beneficiary of any war with Iraq. In talks with U.S. officials, Israel has stressed the need to continue pressure on Iran and prevent it from acquiring nuclear weapons and long-range ballistic missiles. -Ha'aretz, Israel - 2/14/03

Iran earthquake picture wins international award
A black-and-white image of a boy clutching his dead father's trousers after an earthquake in Iran, has won the World Press Photo of the Year award. -Ananova - 2/14/03

17 Afghan villagers 'killed in American bombing raids'
If the account of civilian deaths proves accurate it would mark one of the most serious bombing errors by the US military in Afghanistan for several months. -Guardian - 2/14/03

Defending the indefensible
The focus of this week's spectacular Nato row was the blocking by France, Germany and Belgium of an apparently innocuous, US-initiated request for alliance military assets to "defend" Turkey. But this request was far from the whole story. -Guardian - 2/14/03

Arabs and Jews Unite Against War
A No to War from Those Who Will Suffer -CounterPunch - 2/14/03

Former Iranian Olympic soccer player dies
Sia Sadri, who played on the Iranian National Soccer Team in the 1956 Olympics and was later involved in youth soccer programs in the United States, has died. He was 67. -AP - 2/14/03

Judiciary says decision on Aghajari's death sentence imminent
Iran's supreme court will soon announce its decision on outspoken university professor Hashem Aghajari, who is pending a review of his death sentence on charge of blasphemy - 2/14/03

Poets preach pen over sword
"I tell you I'm from Iran and you act like I've misled you," read Neda Maghbouleh, a junior at Smith College. "You place me somewhere between barbarism and civility." -Hampshire Gazette - 2/14/03

Quakes shake Bandar Abbas and Shiraz
A relatively strong earthquake, measuring 5.1 degrees on the open-ended Richter scale, shook parts of Bandar Abbas off the Persian Gulf on Friday. - 2/14/03

Bomb Bushehr
Operation Babel-2 is already drawn up for "surgical strikes" against sites such as Bushehr. What Israel now needs is a Begin to authorize it and a Ramon to implement it. -Israel Insider - 2/14/03

Bringing Iran and United States closer together
At the core of the Iran problem is what appears to be a near complete misunderstanding of Iranian society and politics among American decision makers and often underdeveloped opinions about the United States held by dejected Iranians. -Jason Rezaian - 2/14/03

Iran's nuclear programme no immediate threat
"The key thing is they are being more open. They seem to have taken on board the message that, in the current international climate, you cannot go around hiding these things," said one Tehran-based European diplomat. -Reuters - 2/13/03

A Pair of Premieres: Behzad Ranjbaran, Composer and a member of the L&M faculty since 1994
Born and formatively educated in Iran (he entered the Tehran Music Conservatory at the age of 9), Behzad Ranjbaran speaks with a gentle but persuasive passionóabout life, music, art, and particularly his native Iran. "I have a keen interest in many kinds of music, [but] certainly the Persian music which I was close to in my early years comes back in the context of a modern musical language. - 2/13/03

Iran's political soccer game: What's the score now?
A Persian proverb says: "That which is visible needs no telling." But the Iranian pollsters who conducted the poll on U.S.-Iran relations are either not aware of this proverb, or they have failed to understand it! -Ali Moayedian - 2/13/03

Q&A: Iran's nuclear plans
John Large, an independent nuclear consultant, explains what it means. -BBC - 2/13/03

A fighting chance for gold
Sanaz Shahbazi wants to be a martial arts film star after winning an Olympic gold medal. Or a model. Or a professional kickboxer. Or a wrestler. -San Jose Mercury - 2/13/03

Russian nuclear energy official to visit Iran
Russian Deputy Minister of Atomic Energy Andrei Malishov is to arrive in Tehran on Sunday to discuss ways of broadening bilateral ties. - 2/13/03

Iran rejects al-Qaeda presence in its territory
Iran on Thursday rejected as 'baseless' recent allegations by CIA Director George Tenet that suspected terror network al-Qaeda had established presence in the Islamic Republic. - 2/13/03

U.S. Jews to begin dialogue with Asian Islamic leaders
American Jewish leaders are to meet today in Kazakhstan with local leaders and other top officials from neighboring central Asian republics. -Ha'aretz - 2/13/03

US Senator Robert Byrd: Reckless Administration May Reap Disastrous Consequences
To contemplate war is to think about the most horrible of human experiences. On this February day, as this nation stands at the brink of battle, every American on some level must be contemplating the horrors of war. -Common Dreams - 2/13/03

The sound of Afghanistan's revival: music
Squelched by the fundamentalist Taliban, a sense of fun returns to Kabul, in song, dance, and laughter. -Christian Science Monitor - 2/13/03

Rift Emerges Among Iraqi Opposition
The United States has told Iraq's opposition it plans to install a U.S.-military-run administration and keep many lower level officials of Saddam Hussein's party in their jobs after the Iraqi leadership falls, senior opposition officials said. -AP - 2/13/03

Senators Rap Bush on Commitment to Afghanistan
Saying the world was watching the U.S. commitment to post-Taliban Afghanistan as a sign of what would happen in post-Saddam Iraq, key senators on Wednesday criticized the Bush administration for glossing over difficulties it still faces in Afghanistan. -Reuters - 2/13/03

Belgian move against Sharon angers Israel
Israel has reacted angrily to a ruling by Belgium's Supreme Court which could pave the way for the prosecution of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon for war crimes. -BBC - 2/13/03

'The threat from America is different this time. It's going to be much worse'
"America imagines they can win a war because they will come with their weapons and occupy this land," said Abdel Karim, a welder who spent seven years as a prisoner of war in Iran. "But it will really be a defeat in the eyes of the world because they will be hated." -Guardian - 2/13/03

British MEP: MKO a threat to world peace
Baroness Emma Nicholson, a British MEP and deputy chairman of the European Parliament's Foreign Relations Committee, has denounced the Iranian MKO as a 'criminals' who form a private army for Saddam Hussein and called for a stop to their activities. - 2/13/03

Explosive ingredients
US plans to invade Iraq via Turkey, a key part of George Bush's war strategy, look increasingly likely to trigger a conflagration in Kurdish areas potentially involving Turkish, American, Kurdish, Iraqi and even Iranian forces. -Guardian - 2/13/03

Why Iran's no North Korea
Of the three nations denounced as the ďaxis of evilĒ by George Bush, Iranís alleged nuclear ambitions are of a lower priority. Might that soon change? -Economist - 2/12/03

An American Kid in Tehran
The 'truths' about current events that most Americans believe come from a perspective portrayed by American mass Media such as TV, radio, and national newspapers. I have learned through my life by personal experience that our mass Media can and does 'manipulate' the truth to suit its own agenda. -Michael Gordon - 2/12/03

Prospect of war next door worries Iran
Whether the United States will attack Iraq - this nation's neighbor and onetime enemy - is a looming concern to Iranians, who long to see Saddam Hussein ousted but worry what it would mean for this theocratic democracy of 66 million. -Boston Globe - 2/12/03

Russia says has rejected Iran's requests to develop uranium mines
Russian Deputy Atomic Energy Minister Valery Govorukhin here on Tuesday stressed that Moscow has rejected Tehran's repeated requests to develop uranium deposits, stressing that Iran has no capabilities to create its own uranium fuel cycle. - 2/12/03

Neighbors / Iran will be one of the winners of the war
Given the situation, I would suggest that the U.S. reexamine its relations with Iran. If there is any country that is ready for true democracy, it is Iran; if there is any country that has strategic significance to peace in the region, it is Iran." Europe has already taken the first moves in that direction... -Ha'aretz - 2/12/03

Theatre in Tehran: Macbeth, Yoosef & Zoleikha
I was very lucky last Monday. I had a call from a friend on Sunday night, who asked me if I was free; she had some spare tickets for Monday performances of 21st International Fajr Theatre festival. I rearranged a few things and there I went to meet her and see the plays. -Syma Sayyeh, Tehran - 2/12/03

Short Story: My China Doll
Mom says he'd come. I know he will not come. If he'd come, mother would not be crying. Would she? I wish you could see. No, I wish I hadn't seen it either. -Hushang Golshiri - 2/12/03

Iranian regime secure but fragile: CIA
The conservative Islamic regime in Iran was becoming increasingly fragile as it was forcefully repressing all challenges to its authority, CIA has said. -PTI - 2/12/03

Oil prices set fresh two-year high
Oil prices leapt 3% to fresh two-year highs, after the head of the world's largest oil company said US crude reserves should not be used to temper price rises. -BBC - 2/12/03

India, Iran join hands against Al-Qaeda
India and Iran are to sign an agreement to set up a joint working group on terrorism and security during a visit by a senior Indian home ministry official to Tehran this week, a report said on Wednesday. -AFP - 2/12/03

US public backs Bush to go it alone
In a Washington Post and ABC News poll, the latest of a cluster of opinion polls since Colin Powell, the secretary of state, presented his evidence against Iraq at the UN security council, 57% of those questioned backed an invasion of Iraq in the face of UN opposition if "some US allies such as Great Britain, Australia and Italy" supported Washington. -Guardian - 2/12/03

Fourteen killed in Hajj stampede
At least 14 people have been killed and several others injured in a stampede during the annual Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca, a Saudi official has said. -BBC - 2/12/03

Immigrants Look to Avoid Registration
Like many immigrants in the United States, the Lakhanis decided to relocate to Canada after the implementation of a new U.S. anti-terrorism policy requiring males from Pakistan and 24 other countries, most of them predominantly Muslim, to register with immigration authorities. -AP - 2/12/03

Son of the Patriot Act
The Bush Administration is preparing a bold, comprehensive sequel to the USA Patriot Act passed in the wake of September 11, 2001 -AlterNet - 2/12/03

Jailed Iranian Jews Out On 'Vacation'
The last five Iranian Jews still held in an Iranian prison have been released on "vacation," although it remains uncertain whether they will be permanently freed. -Jewish Times - 2/12/03

Valentine's Day crackdown in Iran
Iranian police have launched a massive crackdown on Valentine's Day celebrations in a bid to limit Western influences. -CNN - 2/12/03

Kharrazi briefs European counterparts, Solana on Iraqi FM's visit
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi on Tuesday briefed over phone his British and French counterparts, Jack Straw and Dominique de Villepin, as well as EU foreign policy and security chief, Javier Solana, on the results of Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri's Sunday visit to the Islamic Republic. - 2/12/03

Path of a Pipeline: Oil, Empire, and Influence in the New Eurasia
Since the idea of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan export route was conceived, the U.S. government has worked to make it reality. America's intent: to crack Moscow's monopoly on export lines, to further isolate Iran, to strengthen the independence of several post-Soviet states, and to foster an "East-West corridor" of trade and security alliances. -Village Voice - 2/12/03

Iran poses third nuclear threat to US
Tehran uses Washington's preoccupation with Iraq and North Korea to rattle its own sabre -Guardian - 2/11/03

Khatami warns US against backing Islamic Republic's opponents
Khatami here Tuesday issued a blunt warning to US leaders against supporting Iranian dissidents and exiled opposition as Iran commemorated the 1979 victory of the Islamic Revolution with anti-war and anti-American rallies held around the country. - 2/11/03

Is Pahlavi Pulling a Rajavi?
The incompetence and undemocratic nature of the exiled opposition has significantly contributed to the survival of the dictatorial theocracy in Tehran. The most extreme example is the Mujahedin Khalq, who has alienated the Iranian people through its terrorist activities and its dependence on Saddam Hussein. -Iraj Pakravan - 2/11/03

UK considers further aid to Iran for Iraqi refugees
The British government is considering offering more bilateral assistance to Iran for Iraqi refugees after announcing a donation towards UN humanitarian contingency planning in the event of a US-led war. - 2/11/03

Boucher Says Iran Uranium Mining Raises "Serious Questions"
Iran's admission that it has been mining its own uranium raises "serious questions" about its "supposedly peaceful nuclear program," said State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher. - 2/11/03

NYC pensions target GE, Conoco business in Iran
New York City's pension fund chief said on Monday he wants General Electric Co., Halliburton Co., and ConocoPhillips to end operations in countries that sponsor "terror," such as Iran and Syria. -Reuters - 2/11/03

Asefi refutes claims on Tehran-Washington talks on Iraq
US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher had on Monday declined to confirm or deny the media reports that Washington had sent an envoy to Tehran for talks with Iranian officials on Iraq. - 2/11/03

Protesters denounce Iranís Islamic regime
Rroughly 1,000 members of the Persian community (in Los Angeles) marched down Wilshire Boulevard, deploring the 24-year-old Islamic government in Iran and applauding the United States for its hardline stance against such regimes. -UCLA Daily Bruin - 2/11/03

Nato crisis over veto on plans to defend Turkey
Nato was facing bitter divisions and one of its worst crises last night after France, Germany and Belgium maintained a firm veto on plans to defend Turkey in case it is attacked by Iraq. -Guardian - 2/11/03

Washington Should Join India And Iran In Axis Of Friendship
The strategic partnership unveiled by India and Iran during President Mohammed Khatamiís recent visit here may well be a foundation for a stable Asia for decades to come. -Financial Express, India - 2/11/03

Why Korea has returned to the cold
Pyongyang was progressing until US rightwingers showed up -Guardian - 2/11/03

A Prolific Genghis Khan, It Seems, Helped People the World
A remarkable living legacy of the Mongol empire has been discovered by geneticists in a survey of human populations from the Caucasus to China. They find that as many as 8 percent of the men dwelling in the confines of the former Mongol empire bear Y chromosomes that seem characteristic of the Mongol ruling house.-New York Times - 2/11/03

Another Piece Of Puzzle Emerges In Death Of Supergun Inventor
Five bullets to the back of the head from point blank range on March 22, 1990, in Brussels, Belgium, left Gerald Bull, a rocket scientist and arms dealer, lying in a pool of blood at his apartment door. -Caledonian-Record, Vermont - 2/11/03

Britons See U.S. as Biggest Threat to Peace - Poll
The majority of Britons do not regard Iraq as the biggest threat to world peace and one in three people say the United States is more dangerous, a poll published on Tuesday showed. -Reuters - 2/11/03

Afghan Army gets ahead by getting along
The National Army, which accepted 600 more recruits Sunday, is increasingly effective, experts say. -Christian Science Monitor - 2/11/03

The very model of a modern ayatollah
Yusuf Saanei, one of the most senior religious figures in Iran, had graciously agreed to meet with a foreign visitor in his office in the holy city of Qom. The grand ayatollah wore a white turban and a blue serge "suit," rather like an elongated smoking jacket, beneath a brown cloak. He sat cross-legged on a pink-flowered bed sheet atop an antique Persian carpet. -Globe & Mail, Canada - 2/11/03

Achieving nuclear fuel production technology in Iran, a great scientific achievement: official
Iran's representative at the International Atomic Energy Association (IAEA), Ali-Akbar Salehi, said that the discovery of an uranium mine, and achieving the high technology of producing nuclear reactor fuel in Iran are among significant scientific achievements of the country. - 2/11/03

In Iran, democracy alive but weak
What an irony that Iran - whose Ayatollah Khomeini inspired Islamic radicals the world over - has become debate central over the wisdom of clerical rule..Many dissident clerics worry that Iran's system of religious rule is corrupting the clergy with power and turning young people against religion. -Philadelphia Inquirer - 2/11/03

US berates Iran over nuclear plans
The United States has condemned Iran's decision to begin mining and processing its own uranium for its nuclear power programme. -BBC - 2/11/03

Moderate Iran president blasts U.S. policy on Iraq
Moderate President Mohammad Khatami, marking the 24th anniversary of Iran's Islamic revolution, blasted the United States on Tuesday for what he called its unilateralist approach to Iraq. -Reuters - 2/11/03

Iran admits to having uranium
The Iranian president, Mohammad Khatami, made the surprise admission only days before the arrival of international inspectors and follows lobbying by European governments to reveal details of its nuclear power project. -Guardian - 2/10/03

Khatami: Iran's opposition to war against Iraq does not mean it supports Saddam's policies
President Mohammad Khatami here on Monday said that Iran's opposition to the US invasion on Iraq does not mean that Tehran supports Saddam's policies and actuations. - 2/10/03

Talking to Iran
EU external affairs commissioner Chris Patten, visiting Tehran last week, offered no apologies to those in the US government and elsewhere who frown upon such contacts. Mr Patten told the Iranian government several things it presumably did not want to hear. -Guardian - 2/10/03

UN plays down Iran nuclear plans
"This comes as no surprise to us," International Atomic Energy Agency spokeswoman Melissa Fleming said on Monday. The IAEA spokeswoman said Iran had made its intentions clear months ago. -BBC - 2/10/03

US fury at European peace plan
The Bush administration reacted with rage last night to a Franco-German initiative to extend arms inspections in Iraq, portraying the plan as a thinly disguised attempt to derail the US timetable for war. -Guardian - 2/10/03

Iran seeks nuclear know-how, not atomic weapons: senior official
"The Islamic Republic's policy is clear: we want the nuclear know-how, but we are not interested in the proliferation of arms," Aqazadeh said as he welcomed UN atomic energy officials to visit Iran's nuclear facilities. - 2/10/03

Bust of Nima Youshij, Iran's founding father of new wave of poetry, cast
A bust of the founding father of a new wave of poetry in Iran, Nima Youshij was cast on the orders of Mazandaran provincial branch of Iran's Cultural Heritage Organization (ICHO) to commemorate him as a cultural celebrity - 2/10/03

Israel in surprise peace talks
Sharon's secret meeting with Arafat negotiator paves way for new ceasefire discussions today -Guardian - 2/10/03

Reign of terror in Iran
The most recent example of a Reign of Terror is to be found in Iran, described by the State Department as "the most dangerous state sponsor of terrorism." -Washington Times - 2/10/03

Police commander reports drop in crime cases
Police Commander Brigadier General Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf said here Sunday that for the first time since formation of police organization, the trend of growth in crimes has reversed in the current Iranian year (started March 21, 2002). - 2/10/03

Gunmen kill Iraqi Kurdish leader
Kurdish military officials in northern Iraq say one of their senior commanders has been killed by a militant Islamic group suspected of links to the al-Qaeda network. -BBC - 2/10/03

US Troops deal alarms Kurds
Kurds in northern Iraq yesterday expressed alarm over a deal between Ankara and Washington that will allow Turkish troops to occupy a part of the Kurdish self-rule area during a war to oust Saddam Hussein. -Guardian - 2/10/03

This Aging Ayatollah Could Rewrite Iran's Future
Montazeri steps into the political vacuum left by the failure of Khatami's mainstream reform movement and its conservative rivals. While still under house arrest, Montazeri wrote to me that he would likely return to politics if he were set free. "Now that I am under siege, I spend my time . . . studying, and reading newspapers and other publications. If and when the siege is removed, I will have to make a decision relevant to the new circumstances." -Geneive Abdo, Washington Post - 2/9/03

Iranian scholar 'may escape execution'
The lawyer for Hashem Aghajari, the Iranian academic sentenced to death for apostasy, has said he expects the supreme court's review of the case next week to be favourable. -BBC - 2/9/03

Nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, a right of nations: Khatami
President Mohammad Khatami said on Sunday that the Islamic Republic of Iran has decided to utilize advanced technology including those in the nuclear industry for peaceful purposes. - 2/9/03

First casualties in the propaganda firefight
All's fair in the war for hearts and minds: frustrated by the failure of the UN weapons inspectors in Iraq to find the 'smoking gun', Downing Street resorted to plagiarising a 12-year-old US doctoral thesis -Guardian - 2/9/03

Rumsfeld Family Tie is First Victim of War
The American defense chief Donald Rumsfeld has been disowned by his anti-war relatives in north Germany -Common Dreams - 2/9/03

Few immigrants register in LA on last day of anti-terror program
The last day of a federal grace period for men from Iran and other Muslim nations to register without penalty drew only about 75 men to a downtown immigration office. -AP - 2/9/03

Oil prices hit two-year highs
The price of oil has shot up again after US President George W. Bush said "the game is over" for Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. -BBC - 2/9/03

Ministry to deliver 200,000 mobile lines to applicants
Minister of Post, Telegraph and Telephone Ahmad Motamedi said here Saturday that 200,000 cellphones lines would be given to the public in the next one and half months. - 2/9/03

Iran Denies Talks with U.S. Officials on Iraq War
Iran denied on Sunday a report that it had met U.S. officials privately last month to discuss cooperation in a possible war against Iraq. -Reuters - 2/9/03

Provincial leader of mainstream Iranian political party jailed
Hossein Mojahed, the head of the mainstream Islamic Iran Participation Front (IIPF) in the western Hamedan province, was sent Saturday to six months in jail on charge of inciting public opinion. - 2/9/03

Hope as Iraq gives ground over arms
The United Nations' chief weapons inspectors hailed new discussions with Iraqi officials in Baghdad yesterday as 'very substantial' following more than four hours of talks billed as a final opportunity for Iraq to avoid war. -Guardian - 2/9/03

Iran: Experts constitute 2.2 percent of private sector management
Secretary General of Iran experts Association Khosro Nasserizadeh said here Saturday that number of expert manpower employed in the private sector "is dismal, constituting only 2.2 percent of the management force." - 2/9/03

Iraq issue drawing London closer to Tehran
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi had two days of talks with British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Foreign Minister Jack Straw in London last week. - 2/9/03

Time to talk to Tehran
Iran, or Persia, was a proud, powerful and resourceful nation long before America was ever thought of. And for Bush and his bully-boy pals, Iran would be a bridge too far. They should stop posturing and start talking. -Guardian - 2/8/03

Defiant Journalist Freed in Iran
But Baqi told The Associated Press officials have ordered him to reappear in court on March 8 to face new charges linked to articles he wrote before entering jail. -AP - 2/8/03

Iranian delegation arrives for 39th Munich Security Confab
An Iranian delegation, headed by Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Gholamali Khoshroo, arrived in Munich on Saturday for its first-ever participation at the 39th annual Munich Security Conference (commonly known in the German media as the 'NATO security conference' ) - 2/8/03

Iran's Top Leader: U.S. Seeks Oil
A U.S.-led war against Iraq seeks only to dominate oil reserves and will set America on the same "path of oppression" that tore apart the Soviet Union, Iran's supreme leader said Saturday. -AP - 2/8/03

Afghanistan: Analysts Say Some Neighbors Interfering In Kabul's Internal Affairs
The British group that publishes "Jane's Defense Weekly" says Afghanistan is facing "pressure and interference" from its neighbors and other nearby countries. -RFE - 2/8/03

Iranian jailed for backing dissident academic
The six-month jail term for Hossein Mojahed came amid growing speculation that the death sentence on Hashem Aghajari, a university lecturer who has become a cause celebre for Iran's reformist movement, was about to be overturned. -Reuters - 2/8/03

UK's Blair Under Fire for Plagiarized Iraq Dossier
British Prime Minister Tony Blair was accused Friday of playing the same propaganda games as Saddam Hussein after chunks of an "intelligence" dossier on Iraq turned out to have been plagiarized from academic papers. -Reuters - 2/8/03

Role of Ansar al-Islam force challenged
The US administration's assertion that a rebel force in northern Iraq is part of a "nexus" between Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda has been challenged by the International Crisis Group, a Brussels-based think-tank. -Financial Times - 2/8/03

Turkey: Ankara's Trouble Hits Caspian Region
Turkey has lowered its estimates for gas consumption after missing its forecasts for 2002 by a wide margin. The problems may raise further doubts about exports and pipeline investments in Russia, Iran, and Azerbaijan. -RFE - 2/8/03

U.S. Met With Iranians On War
Bush administration officials held a rare private meeting with Iranian envoys in Europe last month to seek a promise of humanitarian help and an assurance that the Tehran government would not interfere in military operations if the United States goes to war against Iraq, U.S. officials said yesterday. -Washington Post - 2/8/03

Congressional Resolution Congratulates Iranian New Year, Calls for Dialogue
House Representatives Gil Gutknecht (R-MN), Vic Snyder (D-AR), Bob Ney (R-OH), Duke Cunningham (R-CA) and Jim Gibbons (R-NE) introduced a bipartisan Sense of Congress Resolution on February 5, 2003 expressing well wishes for the Iranian New Year on March 21, and support for the Iranian people's non-violent struggle for democracy and freedom. -NIAC - 2/7/03

Iran strives to avoid Iraq war
Iran's Foreign Minister, Kamal Kharrazi, has said another UN Security Council resolution on Iraq would be "helpful" and has again stressed the importance of avoiding force to settle the crisis. -BBC - 2/7/03

Iran More Active in Role With West
Banners from a labor group preparing for local elections declare: "no slogans, action." That also could be the motto for Iran's new approach to the Iraq showdown. -AP - 2/7/03

Vilified in Hollwood, father still 'Without My Daughter'
Bozorg Mahmoody, vilified as the repressive husband in "Not Without My Daughter," has come back with a documentary to counter the Hollywood movie on how his former US wife fled Iran with their daughter. -AFP - 2/7/03

Waiting for the eagle to land
Iranians fear it's just a matter of time until Bush focuses on Tehran -Globe & Mail, Canada - 2/7/03

Afghan wetlands 'almost dried out'
Satellite imagery shows 99% of the Sistan wetlands, which stretch over the frontier into Iran, have dried out since 1998. -BBC - 2/7/03

Iranian professor at NSU files lawsuit over firing
Jamshid Farshidi , a former Norfolk State University math professor from Iran has filed a $17.6 million federal lawsuit against the school, arguing that he was fired because of his ethnicity and Muslim beliefs. - - 2/7/03

Israel warns of Iraq war 'earthquake'
The head of the Israeli army Gen Yaalon said his main concern was an Iraqi threat to Israel, but violence with the Palestinians and the growing "nuclear potential" of some regional countries - an apparent allusion to Iran. -BBC - 2/7/03

Turkey agrees to aid US war
Turkey's parliament has agreed to allow the United States to upgrade Turkish military bases in preparation for a possible war with Iraq. -BBC - 2/7/03

Azerbaijan Confronts Myriad Risks in Economic Development Efforts
Azerbaijan faces considerable political risks as it attempts to develop its resource-rich economy. Securing a reliable export route for the countryís abundant oil and gas reserves remains the top priority for President Heidar Aliyevís administration. -Eurasianet - 2/7/03

Iran cleric (Rafsanjani) says U.S. presence worse than Iraq arms
The presence of U.S. forces in the Middle East to topple President Saddam Hussein is worse than Saddam's access to weapons of mass destruction, a conservative Iranian cleric and former president said on Friday. -Reuters - 2/7/03

Row as Iran blocks trade trip visas for British mission
Lord Corbett of Castle Vale claimed Iran rejected visa requests for the mission from Birmingham Chamber of Commerce because the Iranian ambassador to London failed to get the Government to stop an all-party group of MPs and peers meeting Reza Pahlavi. -icBirmingham, UK - 2/7/03

You Wanted to Believe Him Ė But It Was Like Something Out of Beckett
Sources, foreign intelligence sources, "our sources," defectors, sources, sources, sources. Colin Powell's terror talk to the United Nations Security Council yesterday sounded like one of those government-inspired reports on the front page of The New York Times -Robert Fisk, Independent - 2/7/03

UK holding indirect talks on Iraqi refugee threat to Iran
Britain's International Development Secretary Clare Short says that she has been holding indirect consultations about the likely flood of Iraqi refugees seeking sanctuary in Iran in the event of a US-led war to overthrow Saddam Hussein's regime. - 2/7/03

Banned group 'is proof of Britains double standards'
IRAN accused Britain yesterday of applying double standards in the war against terrorism because it is allowing a banned Iranian opposition group, backed by Iraq, to operate openly in London. -Times, UK - 2/7/03

Journalist Baqi freed after 33 months of imprisonment: press
Emadoddin Baqi, a university professor and prominent journalist in jail since May 2000 on multiple charges including harming national security, was released from Evin prison north of this capital Iranian city on Thursday - 2/7/03

A worldly passion foils the revolution
Ayatollah Khomeini called beauty salons "dens of corruption", but that was before women had their say. "Having beautiful hair is vital in this country, as vital as electricity or water," said a Tehran beautician. "And forcing women to hide it is just part of a bigger power struggle against women." -Age, Australia - 2/7/03

Iranian minister in London to meet Blair as relations warm
Britain's policy of engagement with Iran takes another step forward today when the Iranian foreign minister, Kamal Kharrazi, meets Tony Blair in London to discuss the consequences of a war in Iraq and his country's role in the world. -Guardian - 2/6/03

Iran urges caution on Iraq
Any "mistakes" in handling the Iraq crisis will risk a clash of civilisations, Iran's Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi has said. -BBC - 2/6/03

Ramezanzadeh says Iran will not hold talks with US at NATO meeting
Government spokesman Abdollah Ramezanzadeh said at his weekly press briefing that Iran will attend the NATO meeting which is to focus on security in the Persian Gulf. - 2/6/03

North Korea Threatens US with First Strike
Pyongyang asserts right to pre-emptive attack as tensions rise over American build-up -Common Dreams - 2/6/03

Patten urges Iran to help create viable Palestinian state
European Union on Wednesday urged Iran and all 'friends of the Palestinians' to rally attempts for creation of a viable Palestinian state, existing peacefully side by side with Israel. - 2/6/03

Muslim scholar aims to explain his religion to Americans
While some Americans have closed their minds to men like Seyyed Hossein Nasr, others are eager to hear what the Muslim scholar has to say. A native of Iran, Nasr earned a doctoral degree from Harvard University and taught at Tehran University from 1958 to 1979. -Oregonian - 2/6/03

Russia-U.S. Space Cooperation and Iran
Until now, Moscow has resisted U.S. overtures and has continued to sign arms and nuclear contracts with Iran. While close links with Iran are maintained, it's hardly likely that the U.S. Congress will approve budget funds to be disbursed to Rosaviakosmos. -Moscow Times - 2/6/03

In Turkey, Women Protest Headscarf Ban
Observant Muslim women in Turkey are protesting a law barring them from wearing a headscarf in public schools. The controversial law is keeping female students from completing their education. -Women's Enews, NY - 2/6/03

A New Generation, A New Hunger in Iran
The hardline Muslim regime in Iran is watching uncomfortably as the United States prepares to oust Saddam Hussein. Polling has shown the Iranian people are among the most pro-American in the Middle East. -Christian Broadcasting Network - 2/6/03

MPs say Aghajari in good conditions
Majlis Deputy representing Delijan and Mahallat Ali-Asghar Hadizadeh on Thursday said jailed academic Hashem Aghajari was in good conditions. - 2/6/03

Iran's mixed feelings on looming war
"We absolutely hate Saddam Hussein. For us, America and Saddam Hussein are one and the same thing. But the people of Iraq are our brothers, and we don't want to see them being hurt ," Iranian veteran of the Iran-Iraq war -BBC - 2/6/03

Canadian court discharges Iranian professor
The Iranian law professor, who was convicted in Quebec Court last month of mischief after he used the word "explode" on an airplane, received an absolute discharge yesterday, which means that he will have no criminal record. -Montreal Gazette - 2/6/03

Ayatollah Khamenei: Freedom of expression necessary for promotion of thought
Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei said on Wednesday that freedom of expression is a necessity for promotion of thought and creation of new theories. - 2/6/03

India + Iran = a foundation for stability
Has the foundation been laid for a stable Middle East and Asia for decades to come? That may well be what happened when India and Iran unveiled a strategic partnership during President Mohammed Khatami's recent visit here. -IHT - 2/6/03

Iran's Montazeri 'out of danger'
Iran's leading dissident cleric Ayatollah Hussein Ali Montazeri is reported to be out of danger after being admitted to hospital on Tuesday following a suspected heart attack. -BBC - 2/6/03

Patten: It is possible to build bridges
The EU Commissioner for External Relations, Chris Patten expressed the hope Wednesday that both Tehran and washington would see a model in developing Iran-EU relations on how different societies could cooperate. - 2/5/03

Reformers in Iran Look to Freed Cleric
Montazeri's return to public life gives reformers a patriarch of nearly legendary stature - a rarefied mix of Islamic scholarship, political victimhood and revolutionary history as the protege-turned-pariah of the uprising's leader, the late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. -AP - 2/5/03

Iran Media Watch: Waltzing with Washington
Iranian leaders are engaged in a cautious, crucial dance with Washington. They retain contacts with Iraq but do not want to give the United States any excuse to extend military hostilities with Iraq against them. -UPI - 2/5/03

Iran minister's visit angers human right activists
Mr Kharrazi's visit is his second trip to London in three years and follows a visit by Jack Straw, UK foreign minister, to Tehran in November. During his 24-hour stay he will first hold talks over lunch with Mr Straw before having a 30 minute meeting with the prime minister. -Financial Times - 2/5/03

Iranian government to privatize printing houses, postal services
Government on Wednesday directed the privatization of postal services and printing houses in line with its policy to speed up the privatization process in coming years. - 2/5/03

Iran's Parliament allocates $1.5M to anti-US legal campaign
Majlis in its open session said the sum would be spent on lodging complaints against the US with international tribunals and making public opinion both inside and outside the country informed of the US cultural onslaught and its breach of the UN resolutions and Algiers accord. - 2/5/03

Iran denies report it is giving India right to use its bases
Iran on Wednesday termed as "totally baseless" a media website report that it has agreed to give India the right to use Iranian bases for operations against Pakistan. - 2/5/03

Most Iraqi Refugees Expected to Flee to Iran-UNHCR
About half of up to 600,000 Iraqis who could flee any U.S.-led invasion are expected to head for Iran, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said Tuesday. -Reuters - 2/5/03

Short Story: The Miracle of Patience
It was cold. The wind blew up dust and debris into the air. With the intention of killing the cold and dust and fog, she had run and turned and bent and risen so much from the minute she had woken up early in the morning that she had not felt the passage of time at all. -Sofia Mahmoudi - 2/5/03

Soccer: Iran loses to Uruguay, grabs second position in Hong Kong tourney
The Uruguayan team which displayed a rough game, defeated Iran in a penalty shoot out by a score of 5-3 after a 1-1 draw in the regular time. - 2/5/03

Iran: U.K. Government Should Press for Real Reform
The British government should press Iran to turn its promises of political reform into reality, Human Rights Watch urged today. - 2/5/03

Improve human rights, EU urges Iran
The European Union's Commissioner for External Relations, Chris Patten, who is visiting Iran, has urged the country's leadership to improve human rights if they want better economic relations with the EU. -BBC - 2/5/03

Ally of Evil: Is the U.S. suffocating reform in Iran?
The contentious relationship between the United States and Iran remains one of the longest-running soap operas of modern politics. The story swings from hatred to friendship, with broken promises, treacherous betrayals, blackmail, public antagonism and covert rapprochement. -InTheseTimes - 2/5/03

Iran's revolution has failed
Few Iranians celebrated the 24th anniversary on Saturday of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's return to Iran. It is easy to understand why. -IHT - 2/5/03

Kharrazi's visit to London at "sensitive time"
Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi is to leave for London on Wednesday for an official visit to discuss bilateral ties and the latest regional and international developments. - 2/4/03

Iran's Central bank governor defends foreign exchange policy
Recently, the previous Labor and Social Affairs Minister Ahmad Tavakoli, in an open letter to President Khatami, had slammed as 'crime' the selling of hard currency in the Dubai and other countries' currency markets 'ostensibly to cover the budget deficit'. - 2/4/03

UN wants to verify if Iran atomic plans peaceful
The head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog said he plans to urge Iran to sign an agreement giving the U.N. the power to thoroughly inspect its nuclear facilities to verify that Tehran is not secretly developing atomic weapons.-Reuters - 2/4/03

Event: Silk Road Celebration
Avaz International Dance Theater presents a journey through history to experience the Dance and Music of this period dominated by The Silk Road. February 23, 2003; Los Altos Hills, California -Payvand.org - 2/4/03

Parsis Worry About Dwindling Numbers
Today, there are only 76,000 Parsis in Bombay and another 6,000 scattered elsewhere in India. They are one of hundreds of ethnic groups in India, comprising the world's largest group of Zoroastrians, followers of the Bronze Age Iranian prophet, Zarathushtra. -AP - 2/4/03

Opec plans oil production cuts
The president of the oil producers organisation Opec has said that supplies from most of the group's members might be cut when the organisation meets next month. -BBC - 2/4/03

Iranian female pilots conduct air display over Tehran
Iranian female pilots on Monday staged an air display over Tehran on the occasion of Ten-Day Dawn celebrations to mark the 24th anniversary of the victory of the Islamic Revolution. - 2/4/03

Little to Lose: Opposition in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijani domestic politics are characterized by increasingly limited pluralism, as President Heidar Aliyevís administration exerts a dominating influence over both mass media and grassroots activity. In addition, opposition parties are hampered by their own limitations. -Eurasianet - 2/4/03

Some 170 Iranian MPs reject Bush's anti-Iran allegations
Some 170 members of parliament in a statement challenged the US president State of the Union address as token of the US record of interference in Iran's domestic affairs. - 2/4/03

FILM: Teheran '43, Spy Ring: Nazi's plot to assassinate the Big Three
A high-ranking Nazi officer Scherner (Albert Filozov) , developed a plan to assassinate the three world leaders in Tehran in order to undermine the Allied forces. -Darius Kadivar - 2/4/03

Abdi, Qazian receive one more year for propaganda against system
The court investigating a controversial opinion poll on Iran-US relations has added one more year to the sentences of pollsters Hossein-Ali Qazian and Abbas Abdi for propagating against the system - 2/4/03

WAR IS NOT INEVITABLE
"Violence is, was, and always will be bankrupt, anti-human, criminal - always." Philip Berrigan, 1923 - 2002 -Fareed Marjaee - 2/4/03

Patten talks trade and terror in Iran
While the Americans continue to cold-shoulder Tehran, Mr Patten left no doubt that the Europeans are going down a different road, one of constructive engagement, involving dialogue on the concerns raised by Washington. -BBC - 2/4/03

Iranian Jewish Public Affaris Committee (IJPAC) Statement on the News of the Release of the Five Remaining Jews of Shiraz
Yesterday afternoon, sources within Iran informed IJPAC that the remaining Jews in Shiraz were given a "vacation" from their imprisonment on the occasion of the "Ten Days of Fajr." - 2/4/03

Iranian Pollsters Jailed After Survey
Richard Burkholder, Gallup's director of international polling, described the sentencing as ``extremely regrettable'' and said the Iranian pollsters are victims of Iran's ongoing power struggle between hard-liners and reformists, who back President Mohammed Khatami's program of social and political freedoms. -AP - 2/4/03

Tilting on the Axis (of Evil): Iran's puzzling relationship with the United Statesóand itself
We're poised for war with Iraq. North Korea is creating almost daily headlines because of its nuclear-weapons program. But the relationship between the United States and Iran is increasingly enigmatic, reflecting, perhaps, the difficulty of dealing with a country whose oppressive regime calls the United States "the Great Satan" and whose people may well be the most pro-American in the region. -American Prospect - 2/4/03

Iran denounces world museums balk at returning old artifacts
Iran's National Museum denounced a statement, signed by a group of prominent world museums that artifacts of universal importance should not be repatriated, ADJOUR, an Iranian pro cultural heritage NGO, announced. - 2/3/03

Tehran court rules against US: Case decided last week could lead to more suits.
An Iranian businessman abducted in a sting operation by American undercover customs agents 12 years ago has successfully sued the US government in a Tehran court, which last week awarded him half a billion dollars in damages. -Christian Science Monitor - 2/3/03

Iranian dissident cleric free to speak out again
Almost three years ago, through a wall but speaking on an inter-phone, the voice of Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri recalled a Persian expression. "Rights are something you must seize," he said to me. "They're not given to you." Ayatollah Montazeri also quoted an Arabic expression. "There's a limit to all things," he said, "and everything that passes its limit destroys itself." -Robert Fisk, Independent - 2/3/03

EU commissioner arrives in Tehran for trade and political talks
"There are several reasons for my visit. One of them is to hold the second round of talks for trade and cooperation agreement between (the) European Union and Iran," he told reporters upon arrival on the first leg of his three-nation tour - 2/3/03

I.N.S. Shredder Ended Work Backlog, U.S. Says
One manager there had a system to get rid of the vexing backlog, federal officials say. This week the manager was charged with illegally shredding as many as 90,000 documents. -New York Times - 2/3/03

Karroubi calls on Judiciary chief to examine Sahabi's complaint
Majlis Speaker Mehdi Karroubi on Sunday called on Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi to hold an inquiry into the complaint political activist Ezzatollah Sahabi has lodged for violation of his rights. - 2/3/03

Three films share Tiger Awards at Rotterdam
Amnesty International Doen Award was presented to Manijeh Hekmat's Women's Prison (Zendan-E Zanan) from Iran. It received a Euros 5,000 grant. -Screendaily.com, UK - 2/3/03

Iranian parliament returns Minister Khorram's gifts
Parliament on Sunday "for the first time" rejected gifts that had been sent for the deputies by the Minister of Roads and Transportation Ahmad Khorram, the local press reported here on Monday. - 2/3/03

NPR's Talk of the Nation (Guests: Afshin Molavi, Patrick Clawson, Bahman Baktiari)
Iran is a nation of contradictions. Named by President Bush as part of the axis of evil, it's also regarded by many as a country with a burgeoning democracy. Host Neal Conan and guest discuss how this new development changes the threat Iran poses to the United States. - 2/3/03

U.S. Senator Promoting Democracy and Human Rights In Iran
On January 29, 2003, AmIranPAC met with U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell's office to learn more about his provision to ear mark certain amount of funds in the 2003 foreign operations fund to support the advancement of democracy and human rights in Iran. - 2/3/03

EU court acquits Iran's Foulad Mobarakeh of dumping charges
The Persian-language `Afarinesh' daily quoted Eslamian as saying that the European Union (EU) had earlier lodged a complaint against the company for allegedly offering steel products at prices much lower than the EU market. - 2/3/03

'Massive assault' planned on Iraq
Senior US military officials have been outlining what they say are their plans for a military assault on Iraq. -BBC - 2/3/03

Asylum seekers in daring break-out in Australia
Six asylum seekers broke out of a remote Australian detention center on Monday, helped by outsiders wearing balaclavas and armed with tyre levers, and injuring two staff as they fled, the government said. -CNN - 2/3/03

Once a Site of Death, Now a Whirl of Fun
This is Azady Park, a place that captures many of the dizzying contrasts of life in northern Iraq. The park was once a garrison where Kurds were tortured. In what amounts to an astonishing act of replacement, a place of horrors has become the city's version of Disneyland -New York Times - 2/3/03

UN: Most global opiate seizures are made by Iran
More than 60 percent of global opiate seizures take place in the few countries neighboring Afghanistan and most seizures are made by Iran, followed by Pakistan, and Tajikistan. - 2/3/03

Iran regrets death of astronauts
Asefi extended Iran's condolences to the "US and Indian astronauts" aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia which broke up on re-entry Saturday, in a reference to an Indian-born astronaut among the six Americans. -AFP - 2/3/03

Iran's Revolutionary Fervor Is Now All but Spent
Iranians love to rhyme, and street vendors and taxi drivers have taken to calling the 10 days of "fajr," meaning dawn, the 10 days of "zajr" ó torture. -New York Times - 2/2/03

Patten: Iran must be involved in shaping world's future
The EU Commissioner for external relations, Chris Patten, Sunday said Europe has a huge interest in Iran and stressed that it would be a big mistake not to involve Iran in shaping the world's future. - 2/2/03

Over 422,000 cars produced in Iran in 1st 10 months
More than 422,000 cars have been produced in Iran in the first 10 months of the year (started March 21), registering an increase of 38 percent compared to the same period the previous year. - 2/2/03

Iran's Parliament call to investigate journalists arrests, positive: daily
Iran News' on Sunday welcomed the Iranian Majlis's (Parliament) call to investigate the reasons behind the recent spate of arrests of journalists, members of the press, writers and intellectuals, as a positive step toward "transparency" and "accountablity" in the government. - 2/2/03

Pakistan expected to respond to Iran-India pact, says Janeís
Pakistan was expected to respond to the signing of Indiaís recent accord with Iran, which would allow India the use of Iranian military bases in the event of any outbreak of tensions with Pakistan, a report in Janeís defence weekly said. -PakistanLink - 2/2/03

IIPF calls for inquiry into Sahabi's complaint
The text of the letter the political activist Ezzatollah Sahabi has forwarded to the heads of the three branches of the government is alarming and revealed gross violation of human rights, the Islamic Iran Participation Front (IIPF) said on Sunday. - 2/2/03

Shakespeare bridges the cultural Gulf
THE Iranians love Shakespeare. He ranks with the great Persian poets, highly esteemed in Iran, a country with a rich and vital cultural history. While there has been some repression of secular art forms since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, the passion for culture and for intellectual discourse remains and is constantly asserted. Children read Shakespeare at school. And what is more, they enjoy it. -Scotsman, UK - 2/2/03

Freedom for Iran's reforming zealot
He's an unlikely ally in the youth's impatient battle for change but, as Dan De Luce finds, the Ayatollah Khomeini's former right-hand man is ready for a new revolution -Sunday Herald - 2/2/03

Iran's Parliament forecasts 21.7 percent inflation next year
Majlis has forecast an inflation rate of 21.7 percent in the next Iranian year of 1382 (starting March 21), according to the Plan and Budget Research Department at Majlis Research Center. - 2/2/03

Court sentences Iran-US pollsters Abdi, Qazian to jail terms
The Persian-language `Seday-e Edalat' (The Voice of Justice) reported that Abdi has been sentenced to seven years and Qazian to eight years behind the bars. - 2/2/03

Freed Ayatollah Again Makes Voice Heard
He talked. He talked to a delegation of Parliament deputies seated cross-legged at his feet in a simple office decorated with artificial plants and machine-made rugs. He delivered speech after speech to hundreds of men and black-veiled women who rotated in and out of a warehouse-like auditorium... -New York Times - 2/1/03

Iranian opposition leader dares conservatives
Sahabi challenges conservatives to execute him if they believe he is true threat to the Islamic republic. -Middle East Online - 2/1/03

Iran Cleric Rips Islamic Establishment
Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, Iran's leading dissident cleric kept up his defiance just days after his release from house arrest, calling the Islamic establishment a dictatorship that is afraid of reform. -AP - 2/1/03

A Wanderer for Peace Has Run Out of Road
It appears that Reza K. Baluchi made a string of serious miscalculations. One, an adviser might say, never illegally cross the Mexican border if you are from Iran. Two, if you do cross, don't pitch a tent in the Arizona desert. Three, if people want to bail you out of jail, do not stop them. -New York Times - 2/1/03

Soccer: Iran wins, Denmark gives moral lesson -- both from penalty spot
Iran handed the under-23 side of Denmark a 1-0 loss from the penalty spot in the opening match of a four-sided soccer tournament here on Saturday as the Danish proved their sportsmanship. - 2/1/03

Part of Iran's frozen assets in U.S. released - Daily
The United States released frozen assets of Iran's Interests Section in Washington, which only account for a portion of the whole assets, the English-language paper Iran Daily wrote on Saturday. - 2/1/03

Iran steps up Russian crude oil imports
Iran is stepping up imports of Russian crude oil following a $167.45 million deal struck in December to supply 45,000 b/d to a Chinese-led consortium for refining in Tehran and Tabriz. -Oil & Gas Journal - 2/1/03

EU Commissioner Chris Patten to pay highly significant visit to Iran
The EU Commissioner for External Relations Chris Patten will begin a high-profile visit to the Islamic Republic of Iran on Monday to discuss bilateral Iran-EU ties and regional developments. - 2/1/03

Iran lets Iraq chair disarmament meeting in March
In an ironical turn of events, Iraq will take over the chairmanship of the Geneva-based commission that negotiates disarmament treaties at a time when it could be fighting a war against a U.S.-led force insisting it give up its weapons of mass destruction. -Reuters - 2/1/03

Oil corridor strengthens trade links
India, Iran and Afghanistan signed two memoranda of understanding early this month, including a deal to establish a trade and transport link between India and Afghanistan via Iran. -Washington Times - 2/1/03

'Blackboards' is like a fable, but harsh reality close at hand
The great director Mohsen Makhmalbaf continues his own quiet revolution in Iran. Along with directing his own films, he has set up a Film House to educate other would-be moviemakers. -Daily Herald - 2/1/03

India seeks Iran's help with cheetahs
Indian researchers who plan to clone a cheetah hope Iran can help them fulfil their ambition. -BBC - 2/1/03

Iran cancels Zohreh satellite deal with Russia
Iran has cancelled a deal with Russia over the purchase of the Zohreh telecommunications satellite after Moscow failed to provide required guarantees for the project, the press reported here on Saturday. - 2/1/03

Iranian Hard-Liners Warn Dissident Cleric
A group of hard-line clerics sought guarantees Friday that Iran's senior dissident cleric, who was released from house arrest this week, will not turn his home into an opposition stronghold and challenge the Islamic establishment. -AP - 2/1/03

Khatami, Karroubi to follow up Sahabi's letter
President Mohammad Khatami and Parliament Speaker Mehdi Karroubi will follow up the recent letter of a senior member of the Freedom Movement of Iran (FMI) Ezzatollah Sahabi. - 2/1/03

Pollstersí Trial May Portend Further Repression in Iran
According to knowledgeable sources within the reform wing, conservative leaders are currently debating the best ways of handling the reformist challenge. One group of politicians known for their past pragmatic approaches advocate a "soft" approach, banning opposition newspapers and disqualifying most if not all reformist candidates in upcoming elections... -Eurasianet - 2/1/03
..

© Copyright 1997-2011 NetNative (All Rights Reserved)