Pope seeks peace in Mideast, highlights plight of war-scarred children
Pope Francis on Monday called for peace in Beit-ul-Moqaddas in his traditional Christmas address and highlighted the plight of children scarred by conflict, after urging the world’s 1.3 billion Catholics not to ignore migrants.
Lebanese PM Hariri ‘pressured to resign’ by Saudis
Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri arrived in the Saudi Arabian capital of Riyadh expecting to spend the day with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, but instead found himself manhandled by Saudi security forces and forced to resign his position, according to a report by The New York Times.
Bahrain sentences six to death for ‘assassination plot’
Bahrain’s top military court sentenced six men to death on Monday after convicting them of charges including plotting to assassinate the Persian Gulf state’s armed forces chief, state media reported.
CBI: Iran, Russia negotiating integration of bank card systems
Tehran and Moscow are conducting tests to link their bank card systems and are in negotiations over a formal accord between the central banks in order to overcome legal issues, Director of the Payment System Department of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) Davood Mohammad Beigi said Monday.
Russia, China urge peaceful resolution to Korean Peninsula tensions
Russia and China each signaled Monday a desire for a peaceful resolution to the tensions surrounding North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile activity.
President announces new appointments
Iran’s President Chief of staff of Mahmoud Vaezi appointed Fereydoun Verdinejad as his media advisor.
Larijani mocks Trump’s claims of crushing Daesh in Syria, Iraq
Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani mocked US President Donald Trump’s claims that the US and its allies “crushed … (Daesh) terrorists on the battlefields of Syria and Iraq, and will continue pursuing them until they are destroyed.”
Macron to visit Iran as planned
The Iranian Foreign Ministry dismissed rumors that a state visit by French President Emmanuel Macron to Iran has been “delayed,” clarifying that the trip will take place as planned but that no date has yet been scheduled for it.
Iranian police seize 1.8 tons of illicit drugs
Iran’s anti-narcotics police forces have managed to capture about 1,800 kilograms of various kinds of illicit drugs in the southeastern province of Sistan-Baluchestan, a provincial police commander announced.
Death penalty upheld for Mossad spy
The Supreme Court has approved the death sentence against an Iranian researcher for spying for Israel’s Mossad spy agency, Tehran Prosecutor Abbas Jafari-Dolatabadi confirmed on Monday.
No conditions set for Macron’s visit to Tehran
Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Monday that French President Emmanuel Macron’s visit to Tehran will take place without any pre-conditions by the two sides.
Palestinian Christian leaders: Trump’s move on al-Quds ‘insulting’
Palestinian Christian leaders have decried as “dangerous” and “insulting” the United States President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize al-Quds (Jerusalem) as Israel’s so-called capital.
Kabul: Iran gives helping hand to Afghanistan in drug fight
Iran is giving a helping hand to Afghanistan in fight against drug trafficking and distribution, Spokesman for Afghanistan Ministry of Counter Narcotics Mohammad Hanif Daneshyar has said.
‘I don’t see the strategy aborning traditional elements of U.S. soft power’
Rodney Bruce Hall, a professor of international relations at the University of Macau, says, “U.S. Grand Strategy has long relied on keeping its armed forces to a strength level that the threat of new U.S. military interventions is always credible.”
Rouhani visits Christian Armenian family
Late on Sunday, President Hassan Rouhani visited the Christian Armenian family of Edvin Shahmirian whose son was martyred in the Iraqi war against Iran in 1987.
Pakistan calls Iran ‘strategic partner’
Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan Sardar Ayaz Sadiq said on Monday that Iran is an “important friend” and “strategic partner” for Pakistan.
Top general urges support for Basij to promote deterrence power
Major General Mohammad Baqeri, chief of the Iranian armed forces, said on Monday that Basij should be given high priority in order to strengthen the national deterrence power.
Iranian president may visit Azerbaijan, Central Asia
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is likely to pay a visit to the Republic of Azerbaijani and Central
Asian countries in the next year, the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Monday.
Rouhani appoints new advisors, vice-president
In separate decrees on Monday President Hassan Rouhani appointed Hossein-Ali Amiri as vice president for parliamentary affairs and Reza Farajidana, Akbar Torkan and Hojatoleslam Ali Yunesi as his advisors.