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October 21 2014
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Iran's Foreign Policy in the Post-Soviet Era: Resisting the New International Order


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Four arrested for acid attacks on women in Isfahan

- Four people suspected of throwing acid in Isfahan have been arrested, says a spokesman for Iran's Interior Ministry, and "all dimensions of the incidents" are being investigated. 10/21/14

"Digital Native" and "Discipline" Share Grand Prix at Tehran Short Film Festival

- Iranian director Mahbubeh Mohammad-Zaki's "Digital Native" and Swiss filmmaker Christopher M. Saber's "Discipline" have shared the Grand Prix at the 31st Tehran International Short Film Festival. 10/21/14

US, Iran Face Similar Challenges in Syrian Fight Against IS

- The United States and Iran are both helping fight Sunni militants in the Islamic State group. But one of the biggest battlefields is Syria, where Washington and Tehran back opposing sides in the civil war. -Scott Stearns, VOA 10/21/14

Iran, Armenia to form joint commission to boost trade ties

- The Armenian prime minister arrived in Tehran on Monday to discuss bilateral ties and the latest regional and international developments with high-ranking Iranian officials. A host of topics, particularly energy issues, is slated to be discussed during the two-day visit of the Armenian prime minister. 10/21/14

Iran's Suleimani: IS, U.S. 'Doomed To Failure' in Syria

- The commander of Iran's powerful Qods Force, Qassem Suleimani, has said that both the Islamic State (IS) group and the United States are "doomed to failure" in Iraq and Syria. The Qods Force is the branch of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) responsible for overseas operations. -Joanna Paraszczuk. FFE 10/21/14

IAEA: Iran Acts to Comply with Interim Nuclear Deal

- Iran is taking further action to comply with an interim nuclear agreement with six world powers, a monthly U.N. atomic agency report showed, a finding the West may see as positive ahead of a November deadline for clinching a long-term deal. 10/21/14

Head Of Iran's Top Clerical Body Dies

- The chairman of one of the most powerful institutions in Iran, the Assembly of Experts, has died. Iranian media reported on October 21 that Ayatollah Mahdavi Kani, 83, died of heart failure. He had fallen into a coma in June following a heart attack. 10/21/14

Desired Traits Of A Nameless Soldier Of The Hidden Imam

- What makes a good intelligence agent in the eyes of the Islamic republic? Complete obedience to the supreme leader is crucial, along with moral behavior, dedication, courage, sincerity, honesty, and devotion. This according to Iran's Intelligence Ministry -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE 10/21/14

Iranian actress rejects chador, storms off show

- Famous Iranian actress Narges Mohammadi was set to host an evening of shows in the small town of Haji Abad last week, but everything turned upside down when the local iman demanded that she wear not just a hijab (or headscarf) but a chador, or full-body covering. Mohammadi is alleged to have been so angry that she stormed out of the show, to the ire of the concert-goers. -France24 10/21/14

Iran Investigates Acid Attacks On Women

- Iranian officials said they are investigating a series of acid attacks on women that occurred in the historic city of Isfahan in recent days. Some social network users in the country wrote that there had been up to 13 acid attacks against female drivers who allegedly were targeted for not being properly veiled. 10/20/14

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7th ANNUAL NOOR IRANIAN FILM FESTIVAL PRESENTS The Reza Badiyi Achievement Award to Shaun Toub - The 7th Noor Iranian Film Festival-a non-profit, non-religious and non-political organization that bridges the gap between the Iranian and Non-Iranian community through Cinema-will present the NIFF 2014 Reza Badiyi Achievement Award to Shaun Toub for his broad contributions in film and television, at this year's Closing Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, October 22, 2014 at 7pm, at Los Angeles' famed Skirball Cultural Center 10/20/14

Announcing 7th Annual Farhang Foundation Short Film Festival: Celebrating Iranian Heritage - Calling on individuals from all backgrounds and walks of life to submit short films visualizing some aspect of Iranian art, culture, and heritage, Farhang Foundation's annual online short film festival offers contestants the opportunity to compete for $10,000 (first prize), $5,000 (second prize), and $3,000 (third prize). 10/20/14

Next Stop: Iran - The number of international travelers in Iran has been steadily increasing, up from 2.2 million people in 2009 to 3.6 million in 2011. During the first half of 2014 travel increased 215%, in what government officials have called a "tsunami of tourists." 10/20/14

Caspian Summit: review of zones of national jurisdiction - The Fourth Caspian Summit of the Caspian States was held on the 29th of September 2014 in Astrakhan of Russia. (1) The Summit failed to find a new legal regime for the Caspian Sea which was its most important mission and discussions on it have been going on for the last two decades between the littoral states of the Caspian Sea.... -Bahman Aghai Diba 10/20/14

Press TV reporter accused of spying killed in accident - Press TV reporter Serena Shim, who recently reported that Turkish security forces had accused her of spying, has been killed in an automobile accident. Press TV reported on Sunday that Serena Shin was killed in an accident in Turkey near the Turkey-Syria border while covering news of ISIS. 10/20/14

Iraq's PM to Visit Iran, Seeking Help in Fight Against IS - Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is headed to Iran Monday for talks with key Tehran officials about the joint fight against Islamic State militants and economic links between the two countries. 10/20/14

Obama Sees an Iran Deal That Could Avoid Congress - But the White House has made one significant decision: If agreement is reached, President Obama will do everything in his power to avoid letting Congress vote on it. -David E. Sanger, NY Times 10/20/14

In Iran, Political Cartoons Reflect Attitudes Toward IS - The rise of the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria and Iraq, and the advent of the anti-IS coalition led by the United States and including several of Iran's rivals has inspired political cartoonists in several of Iran's media outlets. The cartoons are used to express Tehran's various attitudes or viewpoints on Islamic State (IS). -Joanna Paraszczuk, RFE 10/20/14

Has Washington's Focusing on Iranian Nukes Distracted It from ISIL's Rise? - One potential reason for the slow U.S. reaction to ISIL is that the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran has been hyped at the expense of major, more-realistic security challenges across the region. Spurred by hawks, Washington got busy with the nuances of a potential nuclear "breakout capacity" in Iran and overlooked the real-time breakout of the barbarous ISIL. -Ryan Costello and Ali Fatemi, NIAC 10/20/14

Iranian artists gather at Tehran center to present "Art for Humanity" - The exhibition "Art for Humanity" displaying works by 100 artists to help the United Nations World Food Program fight hunger in the world was inaugurated at Tehran's Niavaran Cultural Center on Friday. 10/19/14

Iran Bans Human Rights Lawyer From Practicing Law - A prominent Iranian human rights lawyer says she has been banned from practicing her profession for three years. Sotoudeh told AFP that she would not try to appeal the decision but will conduct a sit-down protest outside the Iran Bar Association's headquarters in Tehran, starting October 21. 10/19/14

Luxury tourist train on two-week tour ending in Tehran - On October 15, a luxury train left Budapest with 70 passengers onboard for a first-time trip through the Balkans, the Bosphorus and Kurdistan with a final destination of Tehran. Littler says: "There is a huge vacuum in the tourist industry for people who would like to go to Iran but want to do it in comfort and safety." 10/19/14

Seven Worst-Case Scenarios in the Battle with the Islamic State - You know the joke? You describe something obviously heading for disaster - a friend crossing Death Valley with next to no gas in his car - and then add, "What could possibly go wrong?" Such is the Middle East today. The U.S. is again at war there, bombing freely across Iraq and Syria, advising here, droning there... -Peter Van Buren, LobeLog 10/19/14

Iran scholars, associations deplore 'medieval' death verdict on Saudi cleric - Iranian grand ayatollahs and associations have deplored death sentence against Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, a prominent Saudi Arabian Shia cleric. A death sentence passed against the dissident Shia cleric in Saudi Arabia after a deeply flawed trial is appalling and must be immediately quashed, said Amnesty International. 10/19/14

Ahmad Montazeri summoned after defending Iranian opposition leaders - Ahmad Montazeri, whose late father Ayatollah Montazeri was a chief critic of the Islamic Republic regime, has been summoned by the Special Court for the Clergy. The Kaleme opposition website reports that Ahmad Montazeri appeared in court on Saturday, but so far nothing has been confirmed about the charges against him. 10/19/14

Acid attacks against women on the rise in Isfahan - Reports from Isfahan indicate that in recent weeks there has been a rise in the incidence of people throwing acird onto women, purportedly for not wearing appropriate hijab or Islamic gard in public. 10/18/14

Kitaro thrilled by enthusiastic Iranian concertgoers - TEHRAN -- Renowned Japanese musician Kitaro said he was thrilled by the Iranian audience's enthusiasm over his performance on Wednesday, the first night of his concerts at Tehran's Grand Hall of the Interior Ministry. 10/18/14

Iran manufacturing centrifuges used to produce vaccines: AEOI director - Iran has attained self-sufficiency in manufacturing centrifuges used for making vaccines, Atomic Energy Organization of Iran Director Ali Akbar Salehi announced on Friday. Salehi made the remarks on the sidelines of the 18th Annual Asian Science Park Association (ASPA) Conference in Shiraz 10/18/14

Pakistani Guard Killed Near Iranian Border - Pakistan says Iranian forces have killed an officer and wounded three members of its border security force. The rare clash occurred Friday, a day after Tehran warned it would intervene on the Pakistani side if the neighboring country failed to prevent terrorist infiltrations into Iran. -Ayaz Gul, VOA 10/18/14

Keeping the ISIS Challenge in Perspective - Once again American observers are outbidding each other over how serious a threat the Islamic State (ISIS or IS) poses. Recent IS gains in Iraq heightened Washington's concern, causing President Obama to huddle with coalition defense ministers. In this air of heightened crisis, the option of deploying US combat troops has been revived. Yet this supposed fix (even just talk of it) involves a host of likely problems. -Wayne White, LobeLog 10/18/14

Iranian Strategy in Syria Could Make Peace Possible - The group that calls itself the Islamic State (IS), beyond its doctrinaire propaganda and lurid beheadings, is beginning to uproot the foundations of order in the Middle East, and the United States has decided to not sit idly by. -Henry Johnson, LobeLog 10/18/14

Over 800 firms participating in 2 international trade fairs in Tehran - Two international trade exhibitions were inaugurated on Friday at the Tehran Permanent International Fairgrounds. Over 800 Iranian and foreign firms are participating in the exhibitions. 10/18/14

Iranian MPs push bill to crack down on immodest attire, satellites - A number of Iranian MPs have introduced a bill to punish violations of hijab (the Islamic dress code) with fines and the possession of satellite receivers with prison terms. 10/17/14

Islamic State 'Funded By Saudi Petrodollars,' Says Iran's Friday Prayer Leader - "Saudi Arabia's foreign minister says Iran is part of the problem not the solution. That's strange; everyone knows that the IS group was created with your petrodollars," Khatami said, adding that everyone also knew that every act of terror in the Muslim world was also funded by the Saudis. "The reality is that you are not only part of the problem, you are the entire problem!" Khatami said. -Joanna Paraszczuk, RFE 10/17/14

Explainer: The Oil Price Plunge - In the past several days-despite the conflicts affecting Iraq, Syria, Iran and Russia-oil prices have been on a downward trend, hitting their lowest number in the past four years. As of October 2014, oil prices are more than 20 percent lower than June. -Sara Vakhshouri, LobeLog 10/17/14

Most art forms in Iran are illegal. Artists shirk the law by going underground - Tehran is the seat where most of Iran's artistic community resides and hopes to one day thrive, despite the tremendous censorship restrictions regarding who can perform and under which circumstances. Navigating these restrictions has become an art form itself, while social media sites (at least those that are allowed) are continuously monitored. -Nicole Crowder, Washington Post 10/17/14

Iran and the United States: An Insider's View - Seyed Hossein Mousavian, the lead author of Iran and the United States: An Insider's View on the Failed Past and the Road to Peace, has two objectives: to help American readers understand the Iranian perspective on the fraught US-Iranian relationship, and to advocate a sustained attempt to break the cycle of hostility that was triggered by the 1979 Islamic revolution. -Peter Jenkins, LobeLog 10/17/14

Iran Boasts Of 'Magnificent' Qods Force Commander In Fight Against IS - It is no coincidence that Fars bothered to fashion a whole news article out of the fact that an "English newspaper" has commented on Soleimani's presence and "key role" in combating IS in Iraq. Iran has made a concerted effort in recent weeks to show the world that Soleimani -- and by extension, the Qods Force -- is playing an important role in bolstering Shi'ite militias against Islamic State militants in Iraq. -Joanna Paraszczuk, RFE 10/17/14

Sons of murder victim deny mercy to convicted woman - The last "peace and reconciliation" meeting in the case of Iranian woman Reyhaneh Jabbari, sentenced to death for the murder of Morteza Abdolali Sarbandi, culminated without a resolution on Wednesday October 15. 10/17/14

Iranian investment scene 'improving' as relations thaw - International investors looking to exploit opportunities in Iran have been meeting for the first time in concert since the country's 1979 revolution. Hundreds of people gathered at The 1st Europe-Iran Forum in London to hear from the likes of former foreign secretary Jack Straw and meet members of Iran's top business families. -hilip Hampsheir, BBC 10/17/14

Caspian Summit may revive Iran's oil industry - The age of Iran's oil industry means that some of the country's oil fields are maturing and production rates are declining. Current estimates put the rate of decline in Iranian oil production at 500,000 barrels per day every year. To boost output in the short term, Iran's national oil company, the NIOC, needs to employ enhanced oil recovery techniques, including reinjection of natural gas into oil fields. -Leroy Terrelonge III, GRI 10/17/14

1st Europe-Iran Forum kicks off in London - With the prospect of improved political relations and a new business climate between Europe and Iran, the 1st Europe-Iran Forum kicked off in London Wednesday morning. The two-day event, organized by European Voice aims to "properly prepare and evaluate the post-sanctions trade framework and investment opportunities", according to a brochure released by the organizers. 10/16/14

US: Nuclear Talks With Iranian FM Zarif 'Very Concrete' - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif met Wednesday in Vienna for talks on international efforts to limit Iran's nuclear program. Kerry and Zarif were joined by European Union representative Catherine Ashton, who has been leading efforts by Germany, Russia, Britain, France, China and the United States to convince Iran to roll back its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of some economic sanctions. -Scott Stearns, VOA 10/16/14

Talking Turkey on ISIS, the Kurds, and Kobani - Turkey, nominally a member of America's new anti-ISIS coalition (well, maybe), has for some time now been refusing to allow Kurdish reinforcements and weapons to cross its Syrian border into the besieged city of Kobani. -Derek Davison, LobeLog 10/16/14

Bookends of America's Broken Regional Policy - It's hard not to cringe watching the United States careen around the Middle East these days, dispensing bombs, money and political fealty in various doses depending on the crisis of the day to a series of supposed allies that take turns slapping us around while demanding our protection. - James A. Russell, LobeLog 10/16/14

New Videos Confront Iran's Rights Violations through Personal Stories of Persecution - Impact Iran, a coalition of human rights organizations, in partnership with theInternational Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, today launched a new video, "Promises Made, Promises Broken." The video is part of a series aimed at drawing attention to Iran's second Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the UN Human Rights Council on October 31, 2014. A new video will be released each week leading up to the review. 10/16/14

Quake jolts Murmuri in Western Iran - A strong quake measuring 5.6 on Richter scale hit Murmuri suburbs of Abdanan City, Ilam province, Wednesday evening, leaving 19 wounded. 10/16/14

Iranian activist Qavami ends hunger strike after closed-door trial - The trial of Ghoncheh Qavami, the jailed Iranian activist, was held on Tuesday, October 14 behind closed doors in branch 16 of Tehran's Revolutionary Court for the charge of propaganda against the Islamic Republic regime. 10/16/14

Iranian security officials wounded in attack in Sistan-Baluchistan - Three Iranian security officials were wounded in an attack in the southern regions of Sistan Baluchistan province, Security Commander Hossein Rahimi reported. 10/16/14

Photos: Polo match is held in Isfahan's historic Naqsh-e Jahan Square to prompt UNESCO to register the sport in Iran's name - A polo match was held in the world's oldest polo field in Isfahan on the sidelines of the 2014 Inter-City Intangible Cultural Cooperation Network (ICCN) International Festival, General Assembly and Women's Forum. 10/15/14

Falling Oil Prices Spell Trouble For Some, But Could Also Boost Global Growth - Suddenly, the world seems to be awash in oil, with benchmark Brent crude that sold for $110 a barrel in June dropping to under $88 a barrel on October 13. That's a 20 percent price plunge and one that bodes serious economic trouble for countries whose revenues depend heavily on their oil exports. -Charles Recknagel, RFE 10/15/14

"Peace Horn" to sound in Tehran - The Tehran Chamber Orchestra will perform a concert entitled "Peace Horn" at Tehran's Milad Tower on October 18. The concert aims to convey Iranians' message of peace to the world, vocalist Mohammad Motamedi, who will accompany the orchestra at the performance, said during a press conference in Tehran on Tuesday. 10/15/14

Retrial Granted for Iranian Nuclear Scientist Omid Kokabee, Raising Hope for His Release - The request for a retrial for the imprisoned young scientist, Omid Kokabee, has been accepted by Branch 36 of the Supreme Court, according to Kokabee's lawyer, Saeed Khalili, who posted the update on his Facebook page. "Acceptance of the retrial request means that the top judicial authority has deemed Dr. Omid Kokabee's [initial] verdict against the law," he wrote. 10/15/14

Kerry, Iranian FM in Vienna for Nuclear Talks - Kerry and Zarif will be joined by European Union representative Cathy Ashton, who has been leading efforts by Germany, Russia, England, France, China, and the United States to convince Iran to roll back its nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of some economic sanctions. -Scott Stearns, VOA 10/15/14

Iran's Message to World: You Need Us to Fight Islamists - In the fight against Islamic extremists, the commander of Iran's secretive special forces is turning into an unlikely celebrity. Iranian television published last week a picture of Quds Force Major General Qassem Suleimani on an Iraqi battlefield surrounded by Kurdish Peshmerga fighters. -Kambiz Foroohar 10/15/14

Iranian FM Continues Diplomacy Over IS, Despite Supreme Leader's Hard-Line Stance - In the wake of strident accusations by Iran's supreme leader and other senior Iranian figures that the Islamic State (IS) militant group is a Western creation, Iran's foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, continues to push a more diplomatic approach to combating IS. 10/15/14

Iran's metros will lead to petrol consumption drop of 680m liters: Official - The development of the metro systems of Iran's major cities is expected to increase the number of journeys from 880 million to 2.8 billion per year in the next 10 years, according to Iranian Fuel Conservation Company Managing Director Mohammad Mehdi Rahmati. 10/15/14

Who are the "Iranian dissidents?" US media promotes bizarre terrorist cult - The forgotten history of a group of "Iranian dissidents" being promoted in Western media shows the hypocrisy of the so-called "War on Terror." -Caleb Maupin, RT 10/15/14

Iranian peshmerga chief: Iran set ambushes for us - The Iranian Kurdish leader said he was committed to resolving issues with Tehran peacefully, saying, "We cannot destroy the Islamic Republic of Iran and it cannot destroy us, therefore both sides have to find a solution for this issue one day." -Al-Monitor 10/15/14

Why President Rouhani's "Economic Package" is Empty - Tired of the oppressive financial hardship, wrought largely by the imperialist economic war against Iran, the Iranian people elected Hassan Rouhani president (June 2013) as he promised economic revival. He premised his pledge of economic recovery mainly on his alleged ability to bring the brutal sanctions against Iran to an end and integrate the Iranian economy into the world capitalist system. -Ismael Hossein-zadeh 10/14/14

US Policy Towards Iran Played Big Role in Rise of Sunni Extremism - Throughout the recent handwringing about how the US and other Western countries failed to foresee the emergence of ISIS, one factor has been totally ignored, either intentionally or inadvertently: the impact of Washington's hostility towards Iran, especially its persistent tendency to treat any anti-Iranian movement or idea in the Middle East as either good or the lesser evil compared to dealing with Tehran. -Shireen T. Hunter 10/14/14

World recognizes Iran's nuclear rights, deal is certain: Rouhani - President Hassan Rouhani says Tehran and the Sextet of world powers will "certainly" reach a deal on Iran's nuclear power as the group has come to recognize the country's nuclear rights. 10/14/14

Iranian Ministry of Youth and Sports questions Persepolis friendly against Real Madrid - Iran's Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports asked Persepolis officials to explain details of their trip to Spain and meeting with Real Mardid president Florentino Perez. Persepolis officials held a meeting with Real Madrid directors on Thursday. Two clubs reached an agreement to play a friendly in the summer of 2015. But it's now revealed that the man who has arranged this meeting is opposed to the Islamic Revolution. 10/14/14

Iranian Fathers and the Diverse Daughters They've Raised - While living in Malaysia, Nafise Motlaq found the way people talked about her home country, Iran, disturbing. They seemed to lack a realistic vision of the country because they relied mostly on stereotypes. Inspired by this frustration and a trip home to visit her father, Motlaq, a senior lecturer at Universiti Putra Malaysia, decided to try and explore the father-daughter relationship in Iran using photography. -Jordan G. Teicher, Slate 10/14/14

Iranian activist filmmaker detained for one day, reportedly beaten - Mohammad Nourizad, an Iranian political filmmaker and activist, reported on his Facebook page that he was released from Evin Prison on Sunday October 13 after a one-day arrest. Nourizad posted a photo of himself and a report about his release on his Facebook page and thanked his supporters. 10/14/14

Tehran Workshop Offers Insight Into Nuclear Talks - With only a little over a month to go before the deadline for a comprehensive deal on Iran's nuclear program, a group of European, Gulf and Iranian academics and policymakers gathered Oct. 6-7 in Tehran to discuss the future of EU-Iran relations. -Eldar Mamedov, LobeLog 10/14/14

Presence of female musicians stops concert in Isfahan despite proper permit - The music group Erfan was prevented from holding a concert in Isfahan because women were part of the group. The concert was cancelled even though the group had the necessary permit from the Ministry of Culture and Guidance. 10/14/14

Direct Iran-US talks, no longer a taboo: Iran Daily - Considering that many believe US is the P5+1 leader and that the nuclear issue can only be resolved if Tehran and Washington bury the hatchet and reach a settlement, there shouldn't be a hue and cry over a possible Rouhani-Obama meeting, underscored 'Iran Daily' on Sunday. 10/13/14

Photos: Russian Navy Vessels Visit Iran Before Heading To Azerbaijan - A fleet of Russian warships berthed in the Caspian port of Anzali in Iran on October 13. Russian Navy ships "Daghestan" and "Grad Sviazhsk" were welcomed by local Iranian officials and Russia's Ambassador to Tehran, Levan Dzhagarian. 10/13/14

Coalition Contacts President Obama in Support of Judge Tabaddor's Suit Against the Department of Justice - This week, the Public Affairs Alliance (PAAIA), along with 30 Years After, the Arab American Institute, the Armenian National Committee of America, and the PARS Equality Center sent a letter to President Obama in support of Judge Afsaneh Ashley Tabaddor and her recently filed suit against the United States Department of Justice 10/13/14

Iran: Tales from Persia - A JOURNEY FOCUSED ON HISTORY and CONTEXT - Journey 2,500 years back in time to discover the ancient secrets of Persia on this 13-day itinerary incorporating some of most well preserved archaeological sites in the world. Welcome to the once-forbidden land of Iran. -NY Times 10/13/14

Professor Majid Samii named world top neurosurgeon - The world renowned Iranian scientist in neurological surgery Professor Majid Samii has garnered the 2014 Golden Neuron Award. The award was announced during a ceremony held at the biannual meeting of the World Academy of Neurological Surgery in Vienna on October 11. 10/12/14

Iran needs to create 8 million jobs in near future: Finance Minister - Iran's minister of finance and economic affairs says that the administration of President Hassan Rouhani has made the task of creating jobs one of the core pillars of its new economic policy package. In recent remarks, Ali Tayyebnia said that one of the main policies of the government of prudence and hope is to create jobs. He also added that 8 million jobs need to be created in the near future. 10/12/14

Iran says extending nuclear talks with G5+1 likely - Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi said Iran and the G5+1 may extend talks. "It is possible to extend anything and even the time of negotiations between Iran and G5+1," he said. 10/12/14

Iranian opposition leader Zahra Rahnavard undergoes eye surgery - Zahra Rahnavard, Iranian opposition leader who has been under house arrest with her husband, MirHosein Mousavi, since February 2011, was transferred to hospital to undergo eye surgery. Mousavi was allowed to accompany his wife to the hospital but no other members of the family were permitted. 10/12/14

Iran's Jailing of Activist Offers Hint of Liberty Under Rouhani - Iran can also be deceptive, activists here say, especially for people like Ms. Ghavami who spend most of their lives abroad. The return to the motherland can feel warm and surprisingly safe, but dangers lurk, especially for those who return with the idea of promoting change. -Thomas Erdbrink, NY Times 10/12/14

US: 'Severe Penalties' if Europe-Iran Forum Violates Sanctions - WASHINGTON- A State Department official said an upcoming Europe-Iran business conference, the first gathering of its kind, underscores to Iran the great benefits of reaching an agreement with world powers on its nuclear program, as well as the cost of failing to do so. 10/11/14

Coalition Contacts President Obama in Support of Judge Tabaddor's Suit Against the Department of Justice - This week, the Public Affairs Alliance (PAAIA), along with 30 Years After, the Arab American Institute, the Armenian National Committee of America, and the PARS Equality Center sent a letter to President Obama in support of Judge Afsaneh Ashley Tabaddor and her recently filed suit against the United States Department of Justice (Case No.14-cv-06390, Tabaddor v. Holder et al.). 10/11/14

Iran's jobless rate dropped to 9.5% in summer - Iran's jobless rate reached 9.5 percent in summer, the Statistical Center of Iran reported. The center put the number of unemployed people at 2.257 million 10/11/14

More Power for Iran's Vigilantes - In an overwhelming vote Wednesday, conservative lawmakers granted greater powers to volunteer groups to "promote virtue and prevent vice" on the street. Derided by critics as fundamentalist vigilantes, the groups chastise and in some cases, physically assault and arrest Iranians they consider improperly dressed. -Arash Sigarchi, VOA 10/10/14

The Role of Women in the Future of Iran - Washington, DC - "In some societies, laws protecting women are beyond the culture of the people. In Iran, it is the opposite," said Sanam Anderlini, Senior Fellow at MIT's Center for International Studies and co-founder of the International Civil Action Network, speaking on a panel regarding the role of women in Iran at NIAC's 2014 Leadership Conference. -Tyler Cullis 10/10/14

Nuclear watchdog delegation concludes talks in Iran - Talks between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ended on Wednesday October 8. Iran's ambassador to the agency, Reza Najafi, told the Fars News Agency that the two-day talks were "constructive, serious, substantive and frank." 10/10/14

Photos: European tourists arrive in Isfahan by train for first time - A group of European tourists arrived in the historical city of Isfahan in central Iran on a train for the first time, director-general of Isfahan's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization said on Wednesday. Fereydoun Allahyari said the group was composed of 65 tourists from Australia, France, Germany, Britain and Austria. 10/9/14

Can Technology Bridge the Schism of Politics?: What a Berkeley event says about the power of diasporas and technology - The Bridge 2014 gathering on "High-Tech Entrepreneurship in Iran," held at the Wheeler Auditorium of the University of California at Berkeley on the first Saturday of September, broke new ground on multiple fronts. It drew seven hundred people from across the U.S. and internationally. Over a dozen leading academics and entrepreneurs came from Iran itself... -Alidad Mafinezam 10/6/14

Iranian Journalists to Rouhani: Stop Lying - In a letter to President Hassan Rouhani, 135 Iranian reporters, editors and media workers from inside and outside Iran urged the president not to insult them by lying about the persecution of journalists in Iran. The letter, published in Persian on IranWire, criticized Rouhani for recent comments he made during an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour. 10/3/14

Six Iranian Filmmakers Launch Campaign Urging Deal Over Nuclear Crisis - Six prominent Iranian movie directors have launched an Internet campaign saying "there is no deal that is worse than no deal" in an effort to end the crisis over Iran's nuclear program. The website for the campaign, which is in English, says international sanctions have hurt the Iranian people without harming Iran's nuclear program and urges Tehran and world powers to "address the issues, not special interests." -Charles Recknagel, RFE 10/1/14

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

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

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

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

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Philanthropy

Pembroke College Celebrates Official Openning Of Shahnama Centre for Persian Studies With $2M Endowment By Philanthropist Bita Daryabari

Rights

New report on Iran's failed promises on human rights

General

Iranian Becomes First Woman to Win Math's Top Prize

Iranian-American

President Rohani's Message To The American People: "I Want To Reduce Tensions"

Politics

US-Iran Bilateral Talks: On the Edge of a Nuclear Deal?

Economy

Iran's inflation rate has dramatic fall

Culture

Xerxes Speaks: A Graphic Novel on Greco-Persian Wars, from Persian point of view

Sports

Iran ranks first in 2014 Greco-Roman Wrestling World Championship

Art

Words Take Flight in Persian Calligraphy at Sackler Gallery

Literature

Famed Iranian Poet Simin Behbahani Dies At 87

Travel

Iran's 5200-year-old Shahr-e Sukhteh (Burnt City) joins UNESCO World Heritage List

Environment

Who is failing Iran's forests, Environment Department or Parliament?

Entertainment

Iranian Director Rakhshan Bani-Etemad Wins Best Screenplay Award at Venice Film Festival

Music

A New Life For Iran's Orchestras?

Book

A book by Meghan Nuttall Sayres: "Love and Pomegranates: Artists and Wayfarers on Iran"

Event

Register Today for the IAAB Student Summit

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last updated on Tue Oct 21 14:17:58 GMT 2014