Mohammad Sadeq Kharazi, who served twice at Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister and as Iran’s ambassador to Paris and the UN, and who is also known to be close to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has discounted the prospect of negotiations with the United States until after the June 2013 presidential election when President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad leaves office. Kharazi was also reported to have been highly involved in Iran’s so-called offer of a ‘grand bargain’ to the United States via the Swiss embassy in 2003 which was dismissed by the administration of George W. Bush.
Kharazi made his comments at the nineteenth meeting of ‘Iranian diplomacy’.
His speech reproduced on his website, Iran Diplomacy, makes interesting reading, in particular his significant praise for U.S. president Obama and his administration.
Read the latest posts on the Iranian press from Arash Karami here and watch al-monitor.com/iranpulse for future updates.
An Iranian hard-line weekly that has been one of the most vocal critics of the new administration has been suspended.
The weekly 9 Dey, whose editor is hard-line member of parliament Hamid Rasaei, has received a total of six warnings from the Press Supervisory Board in the last year for violating a number of media laws. The board operates under President Hassan Rouhani’s Ministry of Islamic Culture and Guidance, which is currently headed by Ali Jannati.
Rasaei has responded to the suspension with a series of attacks against the Rouhani administration. On his personal website he published a letter from the secretary of the Press Supervisory Board to the prosecutor in which the stated reasons for the suspension is claims by 9 Dey that Iran’s nuclear scientists have been fired since the Geneva nuclear deal in November 2013. Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, has adamantly denied that any scientists have been fired. Continue reading
In a 2-hour press conference, Head of Iran’s Human Rights Council Mohammad Javad Larijani rejected the March 17 Iran report by the United Nation’s Special Rapporteur Ahmed Shaheed, saying that it was biased and filled with inaccurate reports and double standards.
Larijani said that once Shaheed stepped into his position “he was turned into a media actor for propaganda against the Islamic Republic of Iran,” and added that Iran “is not against reporting [on human rights] and that we even welcome it [but] we want a reporter without prejudice.” Continue reading
The Russian ambassador to Iran dismissed analysis that Iran would replace Russia as a gas supplier to Europe, as a result of the crisis between Russia and the West over Crimea.
In an interview with the Iranian Students’ News Agency, Levan Jagarian, who is fluent in Persian, said, “Some Iranian analysts are happy about the existence of challenge between Russia and the West.” But he stressed that the idea Iran would be able to exploit the current conflict between Russia and the West or that Russia would reduce its export to Europe leaving room open for Iran to replace Russia “was not serious.” Continue reading
Despite high profile fatal car accidents, Iran’s supreme leader has defended tours to the sites of frontlines from the Iran-Iraq war as being necessary for remembering the sacrifices and importance of the war.
Raahian Nour (Path of Light) tours are government sponsored trips to different battle grounds from the Iran-Iraq war near the Iran-Iraq border. The former battle grounds have been turned into educational tourist destinations that are frequented by curious visitors, people who have lost family members during the war and students on school field trips. Continue reading
Ukraine’s ambassador to Iran says some Ukrainians believe that if they had not given up the country’s nuclear bombs in a 1994 pact, Russia would not have invaded Crimea. Continue reading
Iran’s Culture Ministry has decided to suspend a controversial plan to resume requirements for journalists to apply for work permits through the ministry after more than 400 journalists wrote an open letter protesting the move. Continue reading
A hard-line Iranian newspaper has claimed that the erasing of a woman from a photograph of European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton meeting with women activists in Iran was done to avoid accusations of labeling her a “seditionist.” The woman, Gohar Esghi, is the mother of blogger Sattar Beheshti, who died in police custody. Continue reading
The visit of Catherin Ashton, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, to political activists in Iran has triggered a backlash from parliament conservatives, who have prepared a list of questions for Iran’s intelligence minister. Continue reading