Iran news round up – March 25, 2014

A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by the AEI Critical Threats Project’s Iran research team.

Politics

  • In an address to Fars Province Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commanders last week, Fars Province Governor Mohammad Ahmadi praised the IRGC, announcing that the province’s planning council will not be formed without an IRGC representative. Ahmadi added that he would “confront” any provincial official who does not cooperate with the IRGC in fulfilling the Supreme Leader’s “resistance economy” policies.
  • Special Adviser to the President on Ethnic and Religious Minority Affairs Ali Yunesi criticized the draft of the Citizen Rights Charter, calling it “very weak.” Yunesi then announced that will establish the Sunni Consultative Council and advocated for more Sunni rights in the country.
  • The managing director of the Supreme Leader’s unofficial media organ Kayhan, Hossein Shariatmadari,  criticized the West for praising “individuals who caused sedition and chaos in our country” while remaining silent towards the “martyrdom” of Ali Khalili. Khalili recently died of injuries sustained while “commanding good and prohibiting evil” [amr-e be maroof va nahy az monkar; religious duty]. Shariatmadari added, “In an Islamic society, some thugs must not dare strike a cleric to this extent because of [his carrying out the] duty of forbidding evil.”
  • Tehran Province Governor Hossein Hashemi announced the formation of the Investment Absorption Center in Tehran Province in response to the supreme leader’s directive on the economy and culture.
  • President Hassan Rouhani appointed vice president and Head of the Foundation for Martyrs and Self-Sacrifice Affairs Hojjat al-Eslam Mohammad Ali Shahidi Mahallati as the Secretary of the Supreme Propagation and Expansion of Self-Sacrifice and Martyrdom Culture Council.

Diplomacy

Military and Security

  • Head of IRGC Public Affairs Brig. Gen. 2C Ramezan Sharif praised the “planning and implementation of cultural-values program of rahian-e noor [“Companions of the Light” cultural program] in the Persian Gulf that has been established for familiarizing our young generation [with Iran-Iraq War era values].”
  • Law Enforcement Forces (LEF) Deputy Commander Brig. Gen. Ahmad Reza Radan announced that the LEF will play “a determining role in…confronting smuggling, economic corruption” and  “disruptors of the economic system.”
  • Companions of the Light Central Base Secretary IRGC Brig. Gen. Yaqub Soleimani claimed that during the past eleven months, more than 2.4 million people have participated in the cultural tour program that takes “caravans of students, university students and various sectors of the population” to Iran-Iraq War era battlefields in the south, west and the northwest. Soleimani then stated “We must return to the jihadi management of the Sacred Defense era if we want to” implement the Supreme Leader’s directives.
  • Sistan va Baluchestan Province Security and Enforcement Deputy Ali Asqar Mir Shekari confirmed the death of border guard Jamshid Danaeifar at the hands of Jaish al-Adl.

Economy

  • Senior Advisor to the President and Special Economic Areas Cooperation Council Secretary Akbar Torkan announced the ratification of a provision in the council to transform the city of Jask, Hormozgan province, into a “special economic area” and that the council will submit a proposal to the parliament soon. Torkan said that President Hassan Rouhani has ordered Jask “to become the second area in Iran’s oil export” due to “capacities that exist in the petrochemical, energy and refinery industries.” He also added that oil storage and “other facilities related to crude oil exports” will be constructed in Jask.
  • Parliament Energy Commission Chairman MP Ebrahim Karkhanei called “resistance economy” policies “a prescription for confronting the enemy’s imposed economic war” and also the strategy of “a strong and flexible economic system against economic crises.”

By AEI Critical Threat

 

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