Thursday, September 25, 2008

Iranian Update

1. Following his address to the UN General Assembly, Iranian President Ahmadi-Nejad said yesterday during a meeting in New York with the head of the Neturei Karta anti-Zionist organization that "the Jews are the principal victim of Zionism." 2. A reporter for the official Iranian news agency, IRNA, claims that following his address to the UN General Assembly, Ahmadi-Nejad was approached by a journalist from the Zionist newspaper, The Jerusalem Post, who told the Iranian president that his statements on decency, peace and friendship were very interesting and captivating. According to the IRNA reporter, the Jerusalem Post journalist was seen avidly recording the Iranian president's statement on his laptop, particularly the parts in which Ahmadi-Nejad spoke about Israel.

3. Speaking to Iranians living in the United States, Ahmadi-Nejad said that Iran would soon be launching a 16-engine rocket into space carrying a satellite.

4. According to rumors, Hooshang Amir-Ahmadi, an American of Iranian descent and thought to be a mediator between the two countries, is back in Iran, on the island of Kish, where he has met with senior Iranian officials. Amir-Ahmadi stressed earlier this week that if Ahmadi-Nejad wanted to be re-elected, he must consider establishing ties with the United States and reaching a deal with Washington.

5. The third day of the International Atomic Energy Agency' Board of Governors conference on the Iranian nuclear issue has ended without the approval of any resolution against Tehran. Addressing the Board of Governors, Ali-Asghar Soltaniyeh, Iran's permanent representative to the IAEA, said that Tehran would be willing to respond to the questions that remain open with regard to the nuclear issue, but only under normative supervision processes. Soltaniyeh also commented on the U.S. documents that purportedly indicate a deviation in Iran's nuclear activity, saying: "We are caught up in a ridiculous and regrettable reality. The CIA should invest its money in finding more professional personnel."

6. China's trade minister says the economic sanctions against Iran are not helping to resolve any problems and are not effective at all. According to the minister, the sanctions have not affected trade relations between China and Iran, and the scope of the economic ties between the two countries is on the increase.

7. The Muslim Students Union has released a statement calling on students all over the Muslim world to participate in the demonstrations planned for Quds Day, which falls tomorrow. The statement says that one way to fight the Zionist regime is to boycott goods and produce from Israel.

8. The Jewish Association of Tehran has also issued a statement ahead of Jerusalem Day, declaring that Iran's Jews will participate in demonstrations on the day along with the rest of the country's citizens in a show of solidarity with all seekers of justice in the world against global imperialism.

9. In a meeting today with Iran's ambassador to Bahrain, the Bahraini chief of staff announced that his country's government was opposed to any possible attack on Iran and would not allow foreign forces to operate from its territory.

10. Mahdi Hashemi has been appointed deputy minister of transport and transportation; the appointment comes in the framework of a personnel shuffle at the ministry.

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