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Iran Focus

London, 05 Mar - The French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, has arrived in Iran to talk with the country's president Hassan Rouhani, Ali Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council and the Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, according to Iranian state TV.

Talks are expected to focus on Iran’s involvement in the Syrian Civil war and Iran's ballistic missile program, which both Le Drian and French President Emmanuel Macron have criticized Iran's missile program in recent weeks, with Le Drian stating that Iran's ballistic missile capacity worried France “enormously".

Iran Focus

London, 03 Mar - In a shocking speech at the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee’s February 22nd meeting in Brussels, Portuguese Socialist MEP Ana Gomes criticized the Iranian opposition.

“I met with relatives of the victims of a terrorist organization called MEK,” she said in the meeting. She added, “We cannot continue to allow some members of this parliament, possibly out of naiveté, to continue to abet some of the members of this organization.”

Iran Focus

London, 16 Feb - Former White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes, who was instrumental in helping secure media support of the 2015 Iranian Nuclear Deal through manipulation that he admitted, has now joined the board of directors of the Ploughshares Fund, a foundation that also helped to sell the deal by paying for favourable media coverage of it.

Back in 2015, before the Iran Deal was agreed, Joe Cirincione, president of the Ploughshares Fund told NPR’s All Things Considered that he believed the American security establishment was solidly behind the deal and said that opponents to the deal were merely trying to block everything that President Obama wanted to do.

Iran Focus

London, 02 Mar - The Free Trade Union of Workers of Iran announced the arrest of more than 10 workers from the National Iranian Steel Industrial Group in Ahvaz.

According to the workers' organization, these workers were arrested on Thursday night March 1 after the security forces attacked their homes. The arrest order was issued by the regime’s Attorney General's Office in Ahvaz.

Those arrested include Farhad Akbarian, Morteza Akbarian, Meysam Ali Ghanavati, Amin Momenpour, Hossein Nisi, Baqer Delphi, Taghi Hassanzadeh, Hadi Afravi and Mehdi Adelzadeh, according to the report.

Iran Focus

London, 02 Mar - An Iranian MP on the Parliamentary Committee for National Security and Foreign Policy is drafting a bill to separate the powers of the Intelligence Ministry and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) Intelligence Organization.

On February 26, Mostafa Kavakebian told the semi-official Iranian Labor News Agency (ILNA): “In my opinion, under the law, the IRGC’s Intelligence Organization is considered an agency that enforces judicial orders. At the same time, we have always believed that the legal authority in charge of espionage operations is the Intelligence Ministry and its decisions are also carried out by the Judiciary. So, naturally, there has to be a separation of responsibilities between these two security organizations.”

Iran Focus

London, 13 Feb - At the World Government Summit in Dubai, the American political scientist who forecast the “end of history,” Francis Fukuyama, said that Iran was heading toward a crisis caused by social tensions between generations within the country. “In Iran there has been a social revolution going on beneath the surface. There is a young population, well-educated women in particular, who do not correspond to the rural, conservative power structure that runs the country. It’s headed toward some kind of explosion and I’m not sure of the outcome, but it is not a stable situation,” he said.

Iran Focus

London, 28 Feb - The unified armed forces of Germany, known as the Bundeswehr had to refuel Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif's plane in Munich recently. According to German media reports, local fuel companies had already refused to do because they did not want to violate US sanctions against Iran.

The daily newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and regional public broadcasters NDR and WDR reported on Tuesday that Zarif was attending the Munich Security Conference with other foreign officials and security experts before the incident occurred.

Iran Focus

London, 12 Feb - Maryam Rajavi, the president-elect of the National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI), told politicians opposed to the theocratic mullahs that Iran would not now be able to return to the status quo and that the only viable option was regime change.

At a meeting in Paris, she said: “What happened in Iran was beyond some protest demonstrations against economic problems, but a nationwide movement against the clerical rule in its entirety.”

The protests, sparked by a draft budget that increased funding for the military while slashing funding for the poor, quickly became about all of the Regime’s problems and shortcomings.

Iran Focus

London, 27 Feb - The state-owned Iranian media has been emphasizing the statements made by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei regarding the problems that Iran is facing without questing his motives or his actions according to a leading Iran expert.

Dr. Majid Rafizadeh, an Iranian-American political scientist, wrote an op-ed on Arab News decrying the Iranian Press for failing to hold the senior officials to account, while acknowledging that the intrinsic links between those at the top of the administration and those running the media make it impossible for the officially sanctioned journalists to serve as the fourth estate.

Iran Focus

London, 11 Feb - The West is once again trying to use the narrative of moderate versus hardliners in Iran to explain the situation in Iran, this time in regard to the popular people’s protest.

Those following this narrative advise lifting sanctions against Iran, levied against the government for support of terrorism and human rights abuses, in order to help supposed moderate President Hassan Rouhani.

Iran Focus

London, 22 Feb - Former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose 2009 re-election caused the people to protest a rigged vote, has written an open letter to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei calling for free and fair presidential and parliamentary elections.

Ahmadinejad wrote: “An immediate and essential need is the holding of quick and free elections for the presidency and the parliament, of course without the engineering of the Guardian Council and interference of military and security institutions, so the people have the right to choose.”

Iran Focus

London, 11 Feb - The pro-Iran lobby is becoming increasingly irrelevant in the US and has lost a lot of its ability to drive the media narrative, especially in leading outlets.

Iranian Regime apologist Trita Parsi of the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) was once a common fixture on fixtures on CNN, NPR and the New York Times, but now he is relegated to obscure blogs that get little traffic.

Iran Focus

London, 21 Feb - Iran announced on Tuesday that it had located the passenger jet that disappeared from radar signal over the weekend and confirmed that it had crashed into a mountain.

According to Revolutionary Guards spokesman Ramezan Sharif, the wreckage was spotted by a military drone and Russia helped Iran to locate the crash site.

He told the state-run news: “Two helicopters were sent to the coordinates that the drone had located, and found the wreckage. The plane had hit the top of the mountain before crashing 30 meters (yards) further down.”

Iran Focus

London, 09 Feb - The Iranian Regime has reportedly conducted an opinion poll among the Iranian people, which found that only 4.9% of Iranians are in favour of regime change.

However, logic dictates that this is just part of the Regime’s meaningless propaganda campaign.

Why? Because if you live under an oppressive Regime that has been rounding up protesters and threatening them with the death penalty, who routinely imprison political activists, and who once massacred 30,000 political prisoners in just one summer, why on earth would you tell a stranger on the telephone your true political beliefs?

Iran Focus

London, 20 Feb - Six people have now died in clashes between the Iranian Regime’s security forces and members of the Sufi faith in Gonabadi.

Currently, the death toll stands at six, with three riot police, two members of the paramilitary Basij force, and one protester having died.

Videos have emerged showing vehicles ploughing into the Regime's security forces and both drivers have been arrested, but it is important to note that this is the desperate act of a community who are under constant attack from the Regime and have exhausted their other options. You can even hear protesters saying this is one of the videos.

Iran Focus

London, 09 Feb - Lawmakers and political dignitaries from numerous European countries including Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Ireland, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland, Malta, and Poland participated in a conference named “Iran Uprising - International Call for Release of Detainees” on Friday 9th February.

Mrs. Maryam Rajavi, the President-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) addressed the speakers and spoke about the changing circumstances in Iran. She said that the situation was changing for the better and spoke about four main issues.

Iran Focus

London, 18 Feb - Iran is currently facing a turbulent time. There are widespread protests in Iran calling for the removal of the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani – some by any means necessary – and the defeat of ISIS in Iraq and Syria has led to power vacuums that the Regime is desperate to fill and everyone else is desperate that they don’t.

Thus Iran has turned to its favourite method of dealing with foreign and domestic crises: misdirection.

Iran has been attempting to strengthen ties with its neighbour Azerbaijan over the past few months and there are signs that it is working.

Iran Focus

London, 08 Feb - A special meeting in support of the widespread Iran uprising, which has now spread to 142 cities and to all 31 provinces, was held at the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday, February 7.

The meeting, which took place on the 39th anniversary of the 1979 anti-monarchic revolution, was chaired by Gérard Deprez, Chair of the Friends of a Free Iran intergroup, and Tunne Kelam.

Guest speakers included Dr Alejo Vidal-Quadras, a former vice-president of the European Parliament, and Farzin Hashemi from the Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI).

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