05252019Sat

Iran Loses Potential Ally in Pakistani Prime Minister

By Mehdi

Imran Khan was elected to be the Prime Minister of Pakistan last July. Before being elected, many were surprised at his pro-Iran rhetoric given that the country has a history of good relations with the countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

He founded the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party in 1996 and it supported the 2015 Iran nuclear deal which was seen as a way of enabling and allowing Iran’s destabilisation of the Middle East. Furthermore, Khan and his party had a big role in Pakistan’s shunning of the Saudi-led coalition to act in Yemen. Khan said at the time that his country was taking heed of past experiences and ensuring that his country is not drawn into another war.

Iran: The People Will Be the Driving Force Behind the Collapse of Clerical Rulers

By Jubin Katiraie

The first Supreme Leader of Iran since the 1979 revolution - Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini – played a big role in the overthrow of the Shah. In fact, you could say that he engineered the move and he used the media to get the biggest audience possible.

He called on the people of Iran to strike. Not just specific workers, but workers across the whole spectrum. And this created mass opposition among society. Strikes started out small and rapidly grew, spreading across the whole country. And the same with riots. He encouraged other sectors of society – students, for example - to take to the streets in support of the working class. Khomeini succeeded in what he set out to do and the country’s oil production dropped dramatically only a few days into the action.

Iran Focus

London, 19 Dec - Since 1989 and the ascension of Ali Khamenei to Supreme Leader, Iran has followed a foreign policy doctrine of ‘West minus the US’, causing many political standoffs throughout the years.

Now, the doctrine is being put to the test once again as reimposed US sanctions are pushing Europe to choose between the US and Iran.

US Concerned over Iran Missile Programme

Iran Focus

London, 15 Jan - The Trump administration has recently expressed growing alarm about Iran’s ballistic missile programme, which they believe is the ‘largest in the Middle East’, advising that it poses a threat to US interests and allies in the region.

One of the biggest concerns is Iran’s increasingly sophisticated medium-range ballistic programme, with the Khorramshahr missile as its star player, which places a large part of Europe, including some US military bases there, within Iran’s reach.

Iranian opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi

By Jubin Katiraie

Across 42 locations on three continents, a conference was held on Saturday where Iranians across the world called for international action against the terrorist activities of the Iranian government, as well as its human rights abuses.

The conference, titled, “Halt mullahs’ government growing human rights violations and export of terrorism,” featured speeches by political dignitaries from several countries, representatives of Iranian communities from across the world, and the Iranian opposition leader, Maryam Rajavi.

US National Security Council Asked for Military Options on Iran

Iran Focus

London, 14 Jan - Donald Trump’s National Security Council has asked for military options on Iran in response to the Iran[s support of insurgents in Iraq and the Pentagon has developed plans for a strike on Iran.

The council, led by national security adviser John Bolton, made the request after Iran-linked militants fired three mortar rounds into the diplomatic section of Baghdad, where the US Embassy is located, in September. Thankfully, no one was injured as the mortars landed in a vacant lot.

Iranian Parliament

Iran Focus

London, 17 Dec - The Iranian Parliament has decided to take money out of the National Development Fund in a closed-door session on Sunday, December 16, according to two members of the parliament.

Alireza Salami, MP for Mahallat, said that the 2019-2020 budget bill shows that Iran has "illegally reduced" the amount of money that will be invested into the strategic fund.

US Crackdown Shows Foreign Firms Should Be Wary of Iran Investment

Iran Focus

London, 15 Dec - As America begins its crackdown on those who violate sanctions on Iran, foreign entities should be careful about investing in the Gulf State, according to political scientist Dr Majid Rafizadeh.

When the US pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal, formally the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and re-imposed primary and secondary sanctions on Iran, many were under the impression that punishments would only apply to American companies or individuals who continued to do business with Iran. The mullahs in Iran spread this is as far as they could, despite warnings by the US, in order to boost foreign investment.

Iran’s Impatient over Implementation of European Special Purpose Vehicle

Iran Focus

London, 10 Jan - The EU is committed to ensuring that EU-Iran trade and economic relations continue to benefit from the positive impact of the sanctions lifted JCPOA. The EU has introduced measures to alleviate the effects of US sanctions on European firms, and announced the creation of a new mechanism, a special purpose vehicle (SPV), to facilitate financial transactions with Iran.

Strikes in Iran

Iran Focus

London, 13 Dec - It’s been nearly one year since the widespread protests against dictatorship broke out in Iran and the government has failed to quell the people's legitimate anger, despite increased repression and mass illegitimate arrests.

In fact, 2018 has seen thousands of protests and hundreds of strikes from every sector of Iranian society, bringing together factory workers, teachers, truck drivers, and many more industries together to fight low or unpaid wages, poor working conditions and spiralling inflation. Here, we’ll look at some of the biggest strikes.

Iran's Worsening Pollution Crisis

Iran Focus

London, 9 Jan - A gas flare is a device that is used to burn off flammable gas that accumulates during oil and gas production. Iran flares a large percentage of the natural gas that comes from its oil production – more than 65% - because it does not have the means or the technology to collect it.

Iran used to release official reports and figures about the country’s gas flare levels, but it stopped this practice in 2015. However, the Planning and Budget Organization has indicated that the levels have increased dramatically. The figure for last year amounts to 17.7 billion cubic meters (bcm). It also said that the goal was for it to be around the 11 bcm mark, so it went massively over. The figure for 2016 was 15.7 bcm of gas flaring volume, so the trend is on the increase.

Iranian People

Iran Focus

London, 12 Dec - Although the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) warned in mid-December last year that mass protests might occur, and dispatched special patrols of Basij forces in an attempt to suppress popular dissent, protests swept across the country later that month. The nationwide uprising tore down the wall of oppression.

Iranian MP Warns Tehran Regarding Continuing Protests

‌By Pooya Stone

Regarding his country’s foreign policy, Member of the Iranian Parliament, Jalil Rahimi Jahanabadi, said in his speech before his colleagues on Sunday, “Unnecessary costs, which are not a priority should be removed”, and that these costs would leave the regime “paralyzed on the streets of Tehran.” He also pointed out that the former Soviet Union eventually fell apart despite its nuclear warheads and influence around the world.

Jahanabadi is the head of the International Committee of the Legal and Judicial Commission, as well as the representative of three cities in Iran’s Northeastern province of Razavi Khorasan.

Iran’s Supreme Leader

Iran Focus

London, 7 Dec - Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei asked the Iranian Parliament on Tuesday to amend its recent bill on retirees, claiming that it contained “gaps” after some official asked for the reinstatement of a number of retired managers.

The law, which was approved by parliament in September, banned retirees from being re-employed in the public sector and resulted in several senior officials, including some deputy ministers, being replaced by younger officials. Khamenei claimed that there are some people who cannot be substituted.

Khamenei Left Without Successor

Iran Focus

London, 26 Dec - Sayyid Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi was one of the most powerful Mullahs in Iran and was thought to be the most likely candidate to succeed Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei.

Born in Najaf, Iraq to Iranian parents in August 1948, Shahroudi studied at a seminary to become a cleric. He was once detained by the Iraqi Ba’ath Party in 1974 but was then granted amnesty and allowed to continue his studies. According to Wikipedia, one of his teacher’s was Khomeini, the brutal regressive founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Huawei

Iran Focus

London, 6 Dec - Canada has arrested Huawei’s global chief financial officer in Vancouver in relation to violations of US sanctions on Iran and Canadian Justice Department spokesperson Ian McLeod said on Wednesday that she is facing extradition to the US.

Meng Wanzhou, a vice chair on the Chinese technology company’s board, was arrested on December 1, while transferring flights in Canada, and will go before a judge on Friday for a bail hearing.

Protests in Iran Represent Threat to Rule of the Mullahs

By Jubin Katiraie

Much Western media coverage on Iran focuses on the country’s nuclear programme or the factional warring amongst the mullahs that is wrongly classified as moderates vs. hardliners, but they often fail to report on the consistent protest movement in Iran.

In fact, barely a day in 2018 has passed without a workers’ strike or other anti-government protest. The Iranian people are furious at the disastrous state of the economy, which thanks to years of corruption and mismanagement was unable to withstand US sanctions, but they are angrier with the mullahs for the decades of repression and violence towards the Iranian people and the world at large.

Iran tries to cover up budget shortfall related to US sanctions

Iran Focus

London, 6 Dec - The Iranian government has lost roughly two-thirds of its overall funding thanks to US sanctions but is desperately trying to conceal that fact.

Mohammad Bagher Nobakht, the head of the Islamic Republic’s Planning and Budget Organization (PBO), first revealed the shortfall on December 4, whilst addressing a gathering of representatives of disabled people, who had come to the PBO to protest government cuts related to the support of people with disabilities. However, his statements were quickly removed from official websites.

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Iran: Ahvaz Steel Workers on Strike for 5th Day

Iran Sugarcane Workers Protest Unpaid Wages on 10th Day of Strike

Iran. November, 2018. Eleventh Day of Truckers’ Nationwide Strike

Iran. July 24, 2018. New Round of Truck Drivers’ Nationwide Strike

Iran. November, 2018. Protest Gathering of Ahvaz Alloyed Steel National Group Workers

Yasuj, Iran. July 23, 2018. New Round of Truck Drivers’ Nationwide Strike

Torbat-E Jam, Iran. July 23, 2018. New Round of Truck Drivers’ Nationwide Strike

Yazd, Iran. July 23, 2018. New Round of Truck Drivers’ Nationwide Strike

Iran, Tehran – Anti-Regime Chants in Protest, June 25

Iran, Tehran – Major Protest With Chants of ‘We Will Fight, We Will Die, but We’ll Take Back Iran’

Iran, Tehran – Chants of ‘Death to the Dictator’, June 25

Iran, Tehran – Clashes Between People and Security Forces, June 25

Iran, Tehran – People Defend Themselves in Protest, June 25

North Khorasan Province, Iran. May 22, 2018, the Nationwide Strike of Heavy Truck Drivers