Iranian news website Tabnak has questioned the sincerity of statements by Iran’s Culture Minister Ali Jannati in regard to unblocking social-media websites such as Facebook and relaxing restrictions on women singers.
When President Hassan Rouhani called for a special committee on the return of individuals who left Iran after the 2009 election protests, the judiciary publicly responded that anyone who committed a crime would be pursued upon returning. The judiciary also said that there would be no change in the status of the house arrests of Mehdi Karroubi, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Zahra Rahnavard, detentions that have exceeded 1,000 days. Continue reading
Iranian analyst Mehdi Mohammadi, who is affiliated with the hard-line Endurance Front, has warned that “confidence-building measures” taken by Iranian negotiators could lead to the ultimately failed 2003 nuclear deal and that Iran should push for more comprehensive and permanent measures from the West before agreeing to any deals. The Endurance Front, which former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili was also ideologically aligned with, is led by hard-line cleric Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi.
Nearly 10 days after Iran’s parliament gave a vote of confidence to Science Minister Reza Faraji Dana, 150 Iranian members of parliament have signed a letter of protest addressed to President Hassan Rouhani asking him to intervene in the actions of Faraji Dana, who has been threatened with removal for hiring individuals that were supportive or sympathetic to the 2009 post-election protests.
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has a final say about Iran’s nuclear program, stated his explicit support for Iran’s nuclear negotiating team during a speech in honor of National Day of Resistance Against Global Arrogance. He also warned that the US concern with Iran’s nuclear program is an excuse, and the hostilities between the two countries would continue even if the nuclear negotiations reach an agreement.
“They are children of the revolution and officials of the Islamic Republic,” Ayatollah Khamenei said of Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who is leading the negotiations with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) and his negotiation team. Continue reading