03262019Tue

AP: Iran added a "strategic missile" to its military arsenal after
a successful test, and the defense minister said Saturday his country was ready to confront any external threat.
The report by state-run radio did not say whether the test involved the previously announced new version of the
Shahab-3 rocket, capable of reaching Israel and U.S. forces stationed in the Middle East, or a different missile.

Washington Times: The U.S. subsidiary of a Japanese company will plead guilty to illegally shipping high-technology pumps with military applications to Iran through two French companies, The Washington Times has learned.
Ebara International Corp., based in Sparks, Nev., has agreed
to a plea bargain related to seven criminal violations from the sale of cryogenic transfer pumps to Iran, according to
Bush administration law-enforcement officials.

UPI: Iran's Foreign Minister at the United Nations Friday described the United States as extremist and said its use of unbridled militarism causes terrorism.
Addressing the U.N. General Assembly, Kamal Kharrazi said, "The prevailing world realities illustrate that unbridled militarism and blind terrorism are mutually reinforcing," giving the attack against Iraq as an example.

AFP: Iran's conservative-held parliament has approved the first reading of a bill that will place tough controls on foreign investment.
Embattled reformist President Muhammad Khatami has said the move will deal a major blow to the economy.
"This law is without precedent in the history of the Islamic republic," a visibly angry Khatami told reporters after a cabinet meeting. "It will paralyse the work of the government."

Washington Times: Federal prosecutors completed a plea agreement this week that imposed more than $6.3 million in fines on a U.S. company that illegally sent embargoed high-technology pumps to Iran.
"We view this case as very significant," said Julie Myers, assistant commerce secretary for export enforcement ...

AFP: Iran has become the latest country to edge towards ditching Windows in favour of Linux, even if its refusal to abide by copyright laws means that the country does not pay a penny to Bill Gates.
According to Mohammad Sephery-Rad, the man in charge of the government's computer systems, long-term political and security considerations have sparked a major initiative to make the switch.

Financial Times: Iran's parliament has asserted its claim to control contracts signed by the government with international companies, highlighting a constitutional right that had fallen into disuse.
The move reflects the desire of a conservative majority elected in February to rein in the reformist government of President Mohammad Khatami in its last year of office.

United Press International: CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency war-games have predicted unfavorable consequences of a U.S. pre-emptive strike on Iran's nuclear facilities.
Newsweek quoted an Air Force source as saying, "The war-games were unsuccessful at preventing the conflict from escalating."

AFP: The Spanish oil group Repsol YPF and British-Dutch group Shell have signed a project framework agreement involving the Iranian oil company NIOC regarding liquefied natural gas in Iran, Repsol said on Thursday.
Spain's El Pais newspaper reported earlier that Repsol and Shell had signed an agreement worth $3.96 billion dollars with Iran to exploit natural gas reserves.

Iran Focus: Tehran, Sep. 23 – As millions of school children headed back to school at the beginning of the new academic year, government officials in Iran announced new measures aimed at further segregation of boys and girls.
School transport authorities across the country have been instructed to allocate separate buses for boys and girls.

Iran Focus: Baku, Sep. 23 – Azerbaijan’s media reported Thursday that Iran violated Azeri airspace by sending surveillance aircraft for aerial reconnaissance. There was no immediate reaction from Tehran, but the top commander of Azerbaijan's Air Force, General Rahil Rzayev, denied any incursion of his country’s airspace.

Iran Focus: Thousands of Iranians from as far away as Australia gathered outside the headquarters of the European Union today to demand the removal of the largest Iranian opposition group from the European Union’s list of terrorist groups. They called on the EU to abandon its “failed” policy of engagement vis-à-vis the Iranian regime and adopt a firmer approach to Tehran.

Iran Focus: Tehran, Sep. 23 – In a country where doctors have one of the highest social status, 30,000 physicians live below the poverty line, according to the head of Iran’s General Practitioners Association.
“Contrary to what is perceived, there are at present 30,000 general practitioners around the country who are living under the poverty line,” ...

AFP: Around 5,000 supporters of Iran's main armed opposition group, the People's Mujahedeen, demonstrated in Brussels Monday in front of the building where EU foreign ministers were meeting, police said.
The National Council of Resistance of Iran, which called the rally, claimed that 25,000 people took part.

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