Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Khamenei Warns Officials of Internal Divisions

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei cautioned the country’s senior officials of internal divisions and warned them not to demonstrate their political differences openly.

"Even if authorities have differences, those should not be demonstrated, there is no need to point out every mistake," Khamenei said. (, 31 October)

Khamenei also said the officials should be careful not to create scandals from minor issues and the heads of the three government branches should concentrate on doing their jobs. Khamenei added that until the presidential election, scheduled for 14 June 2013, "anyone (senior officials) causing disagreement will be betraying the country."

The ayatollah’s comments come after bitter and open disputes between President Ahmadinejad and Sadeq Larijani, the head of judiciary, over Ahmadinejad’s request and insistence to visit Evin prison and Larijani’s refusal to allow the visit. Evin is the country’s largest prison, notoriously famous for its political prisoners’ wing, and where Ali Akbar Javanfekr, Ahmadinejad’s media advisor and the head of the official news agency IRNA, is spending time for posting a report deemed to be offensive to the supreme leader.

Khamenei made the remarks to a group of students gathered to mark the approaching 33rd anniversary of 4 November occupation of the U.S. embassy in Tehran and taking the American diplomats hostage in 1979. 

Photo credit: Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei addressing students marking the approaching 33rd anniversary of the occupation of the U.S. embassy in Tehran. 31 October 2012.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Iran Pulls Back from Nuclear Weapon – Israel Defense Minister

Iran has pulled back from its goal of building a nuclear weapon, said Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak. He told Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper on Tuesday that an immediate crisis was avoided when Iran chose to use more than a third of its medium-enriched uranium for civilian purposes earlier this year. That decision, Barak added, “allows contemplating delaying the moment of truth by eight to ten months.” (Reuters, 30 October)

“There could be at least three explanations. One is the public discourse about a possible Israeli or American (military) operation deterred them from trying to come closer,” Barak said.

“It could probably be a diplomatic gambit that they have launched in order to avoid this issue culminating before the American election, just to gain some time.

It could be a way of telling the IAEA 'oh we comply with our commitments’.”

The Israeli defense minister added however that he believed Iran was still resolved to build nuclear weapons.

“We all agree that the Iranians are determined to turn into a military nuclear power and we all share the declaration that we are determined to prevent Iran from turning nuclear and all options are on the table,” Barak was quoted by Telegraph as saying. 

Iran Military Stages Ground and Air Exercises

The Iranian Army has started ground and air military exercises near Iran's western border with Iraq. State television showed troops parachuting from helicopters near the towns of Sarpol-e Zahab and Qasr-e Shirin in the western Kermanshah Province. (IRIB/RFEL, 30 October)

Iran Bans Export of Basic Goods

Iran banned the export of around 50 basic goods, including wheat, flour, sugar, red meat, and aluminum and steel ingots to preserve supplies of essential items in the face of tightening Western sanctions. (Mehr News Agency, 30 October)

The ban also includes the re-exportation of goods imported with government-subsidized dollars, a major source of corruption due to multi-layered currency rates. The government provides dollars at a rate of 12,260 rials each to importers of basic goods, and they could turn around and sell them at open market at the rate of around 33,000 rials or re-export them at that rate. 

What Can Be Learned from the Explosion in Sudan about an Attack on Iran?

The attack on the Sudanese soil, and attributing it to the IAF, serves to send a message not only to Iran, but rather to the whole Middle East and even to the U.S., about the capabilities of the Israeli Air Force and the incessant preparation for the strengthening of the military option of attacking the nuclear project.”

An Israeli perspective by Amir Bohbot (Walla!News)
Translated by Viktoria Lymar (IranEdge)

Republished with permission from
Photo credit: Reuters/IranEdge