Sunday, March 31, 2013

Ahmad Haj Sayyed Javadi: 1917-2013

Ahmad Haj Sayyed Javadi, Iranian defense lawyer and politician, who served as the first interior minister after the 1979 revolution died today in Tehran at the age of 96. He was one of the leading members of the National Front and later the Liberation Movement of Mehdi Bazargan, the first post-revolution prime minister. He was elected to the parliament after the revolution.

During the shah’s regime, Haj Sayyed Javadi defended many political activists including the future supreme leader Ali Khamenei. After the revolution, he continued defending the opponents of the growing autocracy. For his outspoken defense of human rights he was imprisoned a number of times in the Islamic Republic, who was now led by Ayatollah Khamenei, his old client during shah’s dictatorship.

During the time he served as the interior minister he helped this blogger who was then the youngest editor-in-chief of a daily newspaper in the country to maintain the permission to publish the paper until the Bazargan government fell after the hostage taking incident.

We extend out deepest condolences on the passing of a c
hampion of human rights to his family and to all freedom loving Iranians.

1979 File photo (
First row from right: Ahmad Haj Sayyed Javadi, Interior Minister; Mehdi Bazargan, Prime Minister; Yadollah Sahabi, Minister without Portfolio.
Second row from right: Ali Khamenei, member of the revolutionary council; Gen. Javad Fakouri, Minister of Defense

Karzai in Qatar to Discuss Peace Process

Afghan President Hamid Karzai arrived in Doha and has met with the Emir of Qatar to discuss the opening of a Taliban office in Doha and the peace process involving the factions that form the Taliban movement in Afghanistan. (AP, 31 March)

The peace talks have found urgency as the U.S. and NATO troops prepare to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2014. The Qatar News Agency (QNA) said Karzai met with the emir, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, and other senior government officials on Sunday. It also said he held talks with Qatar's ambassador to Pakistan.

Photo credit: Afghan President Hamid Karzai (l) arriving in Doha airport for talks with the Emir of Qatar. 30 march 2013 (QNA)

Muslims Should Avoid Imitating the West - Khamenei

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei just twitted a message on development of Islamic civilization along with a new Facebook photo.

“The primary requirement for building a new Islamic civilization is to avoid imitating the West,” said Khamenei. (@khamenei_ir, 31 March)

Photo: A new photo posted on Facebook on 31 March (

India to Create Fund to Insure Iran Crude Imports

India will create an Energy Insurance Pool (EIP) fund to support local insurers giving coverage to refiners processing Iranian crude oil. The Indian government will reportedly contribute 20-billion-rupee (about USD 400 million) to the fund. (Press TV, 31 March)

The Indian refiners using Iran Heavy crude, state-run Mangalore Refinery & Petrochemicals Limited (MRPL) and Essar Oil Ltd, cannot obtain insurance coverage from local companies to purchase 100,000 barrels of Iranian oil they need on daily basis. Without the ability to obtain coverage due to Western sanctions, the refiners will have to switch to different types of crude from other OPEC suppliers, a costly process. However, a $400 million fund might not be large enough to provide local coverage to the refineries.

File photo: Iran Najm oil tanker (IRNA)