Is Ahmadinejad Sabotaging Economy Before Leaving Office?

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Since the election of President-elect Hassan Rouhani, the Iranian currency has gained considerably with respect to the dollar in Iran’s open, unregulated market. Many had taken this increase in value as a sign of renewed confidence by Iranians in Rouhani’s promise to improve relations with the West. Under President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the value of the toman had decreased dramatically, causing many Iranians to turn to dollars as a form of investment.

However, according to two articles by Reformist papers Shargh and Bahar, the strengthening of the toman may indeed be the result of actions taken by Ahmadinejad’s administration to fulfill a promise to bring down the toman value to below 3,000 with respect to the dollar. This decision by the current administration, which would be only a temporary solution, may cause serious economic challenges for the Rouhani administration. A summary of the two articles was also carried by Persian-language Radio Farda.

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IRGC Commander: Downing drones was “serious demand” of Supreme Leader

Brigadier Amir Ali Hajji Zadeh, Commander of the Revolutionary Guard’s aerial forces has said that the downing of American drones was the “serious demand” of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Hajji Zadeh added that Ayatollah Khamenei, “emphasised that the drones are not seen, but they collect information and thus striking and downing them was part of the serious demands of the Supreme Leader from the commanders”.

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Head of Revolutionary Guards on Security and Energy in the Persian Gulf

Brigadier General Mohammad Ali Jafari, the head of the Revolutionary Guards, explaining the Guards’ role in the Persian Gulf stated: “The Guards are a pillar for securing stability and the movement of energy in the Persian Gulf”.

Jafari’s speech was delivered in the course of his visit to Guard military installations in the Strait of Hormuz, where he emphasized further, “this great defensive capacity can be developed in the path of securing national security and the defensive strategies of the regime…The Guards with its naval power as the bestower of order, is a lever of power in the Persian Gulf region, and pursues its obligations in the sphere of guarding the Islamic Revolution…Our defensive components in the sea are an assurance and deterrent and this power and assurance has always been guaranteed with the strengthening of spirituality in the Guards”.

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Former “Kahrizak prosecutors” return to the headlines

On the home front

Ali Akbar Heydari Far, the former deputy to the Tehran’s former chief prosecutor, Saeed Mortazavi, has lodged a complaint against the news site Baztab after being released from jail. Heydari Far’s name was revealed as amongst those responsible for allegations of torture and 3 deaths which occurred in Kahrizak detention centre after Iran’s controversial 2009 election and the unrest which followed. He was suspended as deputy prosecutor of Tehran as a result.

But in May of this year, Heydari Far was arrested after discharging a firearm at a gas station in Isfahan, when other customers protested his jumping line. Heydari Far was arrested on charges of “disrupting public order and security”, but has since been released. According to Baztab, Heydari Far’s complaint concerns his protesting the leak of his release from prison.

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The Muslim world reports on the attacks of American targets

The hardline Kayhan newspaper reports on the death of the American ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens:

“The people of Libya, Egypt and Yemen in response to the insult of an American filmmaker to the honorable Prophet have attacked the American embassy. The angry people, with the killing of the ambassador and three armed Americans, have punished Washington. … Available reports state that this attack was undertaken by the Islamist group “Ansar al-Shariah” in protest of the screening of an insulting film to the honorable Prophet in American cinemas, and the assailants attacked the American consulate building in Benghazi using light arms and RPGs.”

Attacks in Libya, Egypt and Yemen are said to be a response to the screening of the film entitled, “Innocence of Muslims,” by amateur filmmaker Sam Bacile.

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