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June 2011

U.S. blacklists two Iranian security commanders

U.S. authorities have imposed sanctions on two Iranian security commanders for collaborating with the Syrian government in cracking down on protesters in Syria. » read more

Germany fumes over arrest of Iranian photojournalist

German authorities have expressed “outrage” over last week’s arrest of Iranian sports photojournalist Maryam Majd, who was detained by Iranian authorities one day before she was supposed to travel to Germany to cover the Women’s World Cup of Soccer. » read more

14 students sentenced for Tehran University dorm attacks

Fines, floggings and prison terms are among the punishments meted out to 14 Iranian university students for events that occurred two years ago at the Tehran University dormitory. » read more

Ahmadinejad warns establishment against extending arrests to cabinet

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad warns that the recent arrests of government officials are “politically motivated” and aimed at “pressuring the administration,” adding that if his cabinet is targeted with similar tactics, he will reveal certain things to the public. » read more

Two killed at Tehran Oil Refinery

Two Iranian engineers died during testing at the Tehran Refinery. Mehr News Agency reports the incident occurred on Tuesday at 3:30 PM local time. » read more

Deaths and injuries in Kurdish regions of Iran

In recent days nine Iranian citizens in the border regions of Kurdistan Province have been killed or injured by Islamic Republic security forces. » read more

Iranian Parliament approves merger of five ministries

Iran’s Parliament has given its vote of confidence to the newly formed Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade and the Ministry of Cooperatives, Labour and Social Security. » read more

My Little Butterfly

Mana Neyestani

Iranian power plants suffer natural gas shortage

Iran’s Ministry of Power is concerned about gas shortages at Iranian power plants and is calling on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to intervene. » read more

Parliamentary board decries motion to question president

The Presiding Board of Iran’s Parliament believes that a motion to summon Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for questioning is not in the country’s best interest. » read more

Iranian prisoners end hunger strike

Twelve Iranian political prisoners have heeded opposition pleas and ended their hunger strike at Evin Prison. » read more

Single-sex classes for first-year students at top Iranian university

Iran’s top university, Sanati Sharif, has announced that there will be no co-ed classes for first-year students starting this September. » read more

Iranian MPs want to formally question Ahmadinejad

One hundred Iranian MPs have signed a motion to question Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Parliament about a series of administrative irregularities. » read more

Iranian filmmaker Mahnaz Mohammadi arrested

Mahnaz Mohammadi, an Iranian filmmaker and women’s rights activist, was arrested on Sunday, June 26 by Islamic Republic security forces. » read more

Judicial chief insists on use of public hangings

The head of Iran’s judiciary announced today that “hoodlums and rapists” will be harshly dealt with by the legal system, the daily newspaper Ebtekar reports. » read more


Mana Neyestani

Parliament approves Ahmadinejad's new minister

Iran’s Parliament has given its vote of confidence to Ali Nikzad to lead the newly formed Ministry of Roads and Urban Development. » read more

Iranian cleric urges prisoners to end hunger strike

Iranian senior cleric Ayatollah Bayat Zanjani has told political prisoner Mohammad Javad Mozaffar that he and other hunger strikers have a religious duty to end their dangerous protest. » read more

Sentence reduced for jailed Iranian lawyer

Mohammad Seifzadeh, one of the founders of the Human Rights Defenders Centre, has had his sentence reduced to two years from the nine years handed out by the preliminary court. » read more

Five hunger strikers treated at infirmary

Five of the 12 Iranian political prisoners on hunger strike at Evin Prison have been transferred to the infirmary, according to the Kaleme opposition website. » read more

Protests planned in 25 cities in support of Iranian political prisoners

Protests have been organized in 25 cities around the world today, June 25, to condemn the deaths of Haleh Sahabi and Reza Hoda Saber, and to show solidarity with prisoners on a hunger strike at two Iranian prisons. » read more

Former president urges end to hunger strike

Former Iranian president Mohammad Khatami has called on political prisoners to end their hunger strike and urged the authorities to establish a dialogue with the protesters. » read more

First Iranian reaction to reports of mass executions

Iranian authorities have responded for the first time to reports of mass executions at Mashhad’s Vakilabad Prison, saying foreign media are exaggerating the sentences carried out there. » read more

Afghan President in Tehran for counter-terrorism forum

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has travelled to Iran to participate in the International Conference to Combat Terrorism. » read more

Parliament denies secret meeting between Speaker and reformists

Iran's Parliament denies that Parliamentary Speaker Ali Larijani has held secret meetings with reformist figures. » read more

Jailed activist’s hunger strike raises concerns

Mahnaz Asgharzadeh, the wife of jailed Iranian activist Mohsen Aminzadeh, has expressed grave concern over her husband’s well-being. He recently joined a hunger strike to protest the death of Reza Hoda Saber, another political prisoner who was Aminzadeh’s fellow inmate. » read more

EU blacklists Iranian commanders for role in Syria

The European Union has brought sanctions against three members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) for assisting in Syria’s crackdown on demonstrations. » read more

Prisoners urge UN investigator to visit Iranian prisons

Six Iranian political prisoners held at Rejaishahr Prison in Karaj have urged Ahmad Shaheed, the United Nations special rapporteur for Iran, to inspect Iranian prisons. » read more


Mana Neyestani

Deputy foreign minister arrested after resignation

Mohammad Sharif Malekzadeh, who just stepped down as Iran’s deputy foreign minister, was arrested today. » read more

Six more Iranian prisoners join hunger strike

Six more Iranian political prisoners have joined 12 prisoners who are on a hunger strike to protest the recent deaths of two political prisoners. » read more

MPs want candidate reps supervising election

A number of Iranian MPs want to pass a law that would let candidate representatives supervise elections and the counting of votes. » read more

Accepting UN investigator against Iranian policy: judiciary

The head of Iran’s judiciary says welcoming the United Nations rapporteur on human rights would not be in line with Islamic Republic policy. » read more

Iranian MPs move to impeach Interior Minister

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s cabinet is once again being called into question, as 25 MPs call for the impeachment of Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar. » read more

Two prisoners on hunger strike receive treatment

Two of the 12 Iranian political prisoners on a hunger strike in Evin Prison were taken to the infirmary, an opposition website reports » read more

Possible overtures to Iranian reformists for joining elections

The head of Iran’s Parliament is reportedly inviting “moderate and prominent reformists” to take part in the parliamentary election next March, Iranian media report. » read more

Parliament halts move to impeach foreign minister

The Iranian Parliament stops the impeachment of Foreign Minister Akbar Salehi after resignation of Ahmadinejad ally from the foreign ministry. » read more

Ahmadinejad's proposed sports minister voted down by Parliament

The Iranian Parliament voted to reject Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s choice for sports minister today, the latest chapter in the dispute between the legislative body and the presidency. » read more

Iranian Intelligence Ministry said to oppose new Foreign Ministry appointment

Two Iranian MPs say the Ministry of Intelligence opposes the appointment of Mohammad Sharif Malekzadeh as deputy foreign minister. » read more

Rights group concerned for Iranian prisoners on hunger strike

The International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran has expressed grave concern for the lives of 12 political prisoners on hunger strike in Iran’s Evin Prison. » read more

Iranian authorities aim for single-sex university classes

University classes will be separated based on gender starting in September, the Iranian Parliament’s Education and Research commission announced. » read more

UN rights investigator may use other methods to prepare report on Iran

The head of the National Union of Iranian Court Attorneys said if the United Nations’ Special Human Rights Rapporteur is not allowed to travel to Iran, he will gather his data by other means. » read more

Ebadi accuses Iranian authorities of intent to kill political prisoners

Shirin Ebadi, the Iranian Nobel Peace laureate, says the death of Iranian political prisoners attests to the Islamic Republic government’s “organized and systematic determination” to destroy its political opponents. » read more

Iranian doctors call for end to hunger strike

The Islamic Association of Iranian Physicians has called on 12 political prisoners to end their hunger strike. » read more

Iranian journalist, Farid Salavati, released

Iranian jounalist Farid Salavati, who was arrested last week after reporting on a gang rape in Khomeini Shahr, was released today. » read more

Iranian judiciary to prosecute gang rape suspects

While the Iranian judiciary says it intends to take severe action against the perpetrators of a gang rape in a village near Kashmar, the local Friday Prayers Imam, Ghassem Yaghoubi reports that the rape victim is currently under arrest. » read more

Iranian MPs want to impeach foreign minister

A group of Iranian MPs has called on the head of Parliament to impeach Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi for his latest appointment to the ministry administration. » read more

Iran denounces UN rights investigator

Iran must stop the United Nations human Rights investigator from coming to the country, the deputy of the Iranian Parliament’s human rights committee said today. » read more

The Freedom Ballet

Mana Neyestani

Iranian officials ordered to strictly enforce hijab

The head of Tehran City Council said today that officials must not stand in the way of morality police and their street-level enforcement of the Islamic dress code, hijab. » read more

Iranian political prisoners protest death of jailed activists

Twelve Iranian political prisoners have started a hunger strike to protest the deaths of the two Nationalist-religious political prisoners in the past month, Haleh Sahabi and Reza Hoda Saber. » read more

UN rights investigator appointed for Iran

The United Nations has appointed Ahmad Shaheed, the former foreign minister of Maldives, as special rapporteur on human rights for Iran. » read more

Seven Iranian soldiers killed by land mines: KGR

The Kurdistan Regional Government says seven Iranian soldiers were killed by landmines on Thursday. » read more

Mourners commemorate jailed journalist under forces’ scrutiny

A commemoration service for Reza Hoda Saber, the jailed Iranian journalist who died of a massive heart attack 10 days into a hunger strike, was held under strict security measures in Tehran. » read more

Ahmadinejad aides targeted by Parliament

Iran’s Parliament announced that it has received a series of reports questioning the actions of Esfandiar Rahim Mashai and Hamid Baghai, two chief presidential aides to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. » read more

Iranian authorities try to make humanities more Islamic

Iran’s deputy science minister says transforming the humanities into Islamic human sciences is harder than sending a human into space. » read more

Iran’s Rasad satellite orbiting earth

Iran announced that it has successfully launched its second national satellite, Rasad, on Wednesday. » read more

Iran does not want to build nuclear weapons: Russia

Mahmoud Ahamdinejad has made it clear that Iran has no intention of building nuclear weapons, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. » read more

Afghan officials arrest Iranian on security charges

An Iranian citizen is one of two suspects arrested in Southern Afghanistan and charged with attempting a suicide attack. » read more

Reformist MPs call for probe into death of jailed journalist

Ten reformist MPs have called on the Minister of Justice to investigate the death of Reza Hoda Saber, the jailed journalist who died Sunday after a 10-day hunger strike. » read more

Iranian political prisoner protests lack of medical care

Mohammad Hossein Sohrabirad, an Iranian political prisoner, says he is protesting the lack of adequate medical care in prison by going on a drug strike and refusing his medication. » read more

Arash the Archer Today

Mana Neyestani

Ahmadinejad selects minister of sports

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in a critical letter to Parliament, has proposed a minister for the newly formed ministry of sports and youth. » read more

Iranian opposition calls for more peaceful gatherings

Iranian opposition groups have called on people to join peaceful gatherings in the main squares of cities across the country on Wednesday June 15. » read more

Iranian journalist held in undetermined state

Iranian journalist Sam Mahmoodi Sarabi continues to be held in legal limbo at Evin Prison, even as his arrest warrant is renewed after two months. » read more

Authorities deny journalist was on hunger strike before death

Islamic Republic authorities gave their first response today to the death of Reza Hoda Saber, denying that the jailed journalist and political activist had been on a hunger strike during his final days. » read more

Cellmates say deceased journalist beaten prior to death

Sixty-four Iranian political prisoners from Ward 350 of Evin Prison have issued an announcement declaring that Reza Hoda Saber, the jailed Iranian journalist who died on Saturday following nearly 10 days on a hunger strike, was severely beaten by authorities on the eighth day of his strike. » read more

Iranian security forces delay burial of activist

Iranian security forces held up the burial of Reza Hoda Saber this morning, surrounding the family and mourners in anticipation of outbursts of protest against the death of the jailed activist, an opposition website reports. » read more

Opposition sites report arrest of Iranian protesters

Iranian security forces attacked and arrested pro-reform demonstrators in Tehran on Sunday, as protesters tried to mark the anniversary of the disputed presidential election of 2009. » read more

Press rights group blames authorities for death of jailed journalist

Reporters Without Borders issued a statement today holding Islamic Republic authorities responsible for the death of Reza Hoda Saber, the Iranian journalist who died from cardiac complications following a nine-day hunger strike in Evin Prison. » read more

Iranian political prisoner in grave health

There are grave concerns today for the health of Iranian political prisoner Abdollah Momeni, who is suffering cardiac complications and back problems, the Jaras opposition website reports. » read more

Jailed Iranian journalist dies following hunger strike

Iranian journalist and social activist Reza Hoda Saber, who had suffered a heart attack following a hunger strike at Evin Prison, died today at Modarres Hospital in Tehran. » read more

Former president once again demands release of opposition leaders

Former Iranian president Mohammad Khatami has called once again for the release of opposition leaders MirHosein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, who have been under house arrest since February. » read more

Iranian economist gets one year in jail

An Iranian economist who criticized government-subsidy cuts by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s administration has been sentenced to one year in prison » read more

Natural Death of Hoda saber

Mana Neyestani

Iran's Guardian Council votes down ministry merger

Iran’s Guardian Council, the powerful watchdog of the constitution, has called the establishment of the Ministry of Infrastructure unconstitutional. » read more

Rights group urges Iran to end crackdown on labour activists

Amnesty International has called on the Islamic Republic to recognize independent labour unions and end the crackdown on labour activists. » read more

Iran says detained "spy" planned election disturbances

Iran’s Intelligence Minister has announced the arrest of a “spy” who was developing a social network for creating disturbances during the coming parliamentary elections. » read more

Syrian refugees say Iranian forces involved in crackdown

AFP reports that Iranian troops are in Syria supporting the regime of Beshar Assad, according to injured Syrian refugees in Turkey. » read more

Iran condemns IAEA move against Syria

Iran has condemned the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for acting against Syria and has accused the agency of having a “legitimacy crisis.” » read more

Secret mass executions in Iranian prison

Sixteen prisoners were secretly hanged at Mashhad’s Vakilabad Prison on May 23 and 24, says the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, citing “reliable sources.” » read more

Iranian blogger sentenced to 20 years in jail

Iran has sentenced Baluch blogger Sakhi Rigi to 20 years in prison for “publishing falsehoods and acting against national security,” according to Reporters Without Borders. » read more

Opposition says government must change its ways before any reconciliation

Ardeshir AmirArjmand, a spokesman for the Coordination Council for the Green Path of Hope, says any talk of national reconciliation until the government changes its methods and policies. » read more

Sexual assault on campus triggers student protests

The campus of Ferdowsi University in Mashhad has been the scene of protests for more than two days following news that a female student was assaulted and raped. » read more

Jailed journalist moved to solitary again

Mehdi Mahmoudian, the jailed Iranian journalist who recently exposed the prevalence of sexual abuse in Iranian prisons, has been transferred to solitary confinement again. » read more

Iran wants IAEA to close nuclear file

Iran’s representative at the International Atomic Energy Agency says Iran’s nuclear dossier at the agency should be closed for good since Iran has complied with all IAEA requirements stipulated in their agreement. » read more

Iranian police to tighten security over public dress code

Islamic Republic police has announced they will heighten the enforcement of dress-code laws all across Iran. » read more

Attacks continue against president’s chief of staff

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) “will confront head-on the deviant current led and directed” by Esfandiar Rahim Mashai, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s chief of staff, the Supreme Leader’s deputy representative with the IRGC said today. » read more

Official state media accuses Iranian Parliament's site of fueling dissent

The Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) has accused the Iranian Parliament’s news website of failing to heed the Supreme Leader by fueling dissent and disputes in the upper echelons of power. » read more

Iran to establish its own national internet

Iran intends to disconnect from the World Wide Web by establishing its own internally operated web, The Wall Street Journal reports. » read more

Outcry against Haleh Sahabi’s death

Female political prisoners in Iran have issued a statement condemning the “lies in the government media about Haleh Sahabi’s death” and calling for those responsible for her death to be brought to justice. » read more

The End of the Game

Mana Neyestani

Protesters dispersed at Service for Haleh Sahabi

Iranian security forces fired shots in the air to disperse people protesting the death of Iranian activist Haleh Sahabi, witnesses told AFP. » read more

Russia says no evidence of militarization in Iran nuclear program

Russia’s foreign minister says: “There is no evidence or reason to show that Iran has decided to build a nuclear bomb.” » read more

Iran says Baha'i university illegal

The Baha’i Institute of Higher Education (BIHE) in Iran has been declared an “illegal” organization by the Ministry of Science and Technology. » read more

Iran's Supreme Leader backs Ahmadinejad

Iran's Supreme Leader has called for unity among Islamic Republic supporters, which is being interpreted as an implicit show of support for embattled President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. » read more

Forces intimidate banned Iranian students

Iran’s Council for the Defence of Education Rights says Iranian security forces have threatened expelled university students to keep them from protesting against their own expulsion.

In an announcement issued today, the council writes that the so-called “starred students” [students branded as those to be denied higher education], have been summoned to police and security forces offices in advance of the release of results of the graduate student placement entrance exam. They have reportedly been threatened and intimidated to prevent them from protesting. » read more

Iran rejects IAEA accusations

Iran’s nuclear power chief says the International Atomic Energy Agency is fabricating accusations against his country. » read more

Parliament challenges Ahmadinejad’s choice for Oil Ministry

A day after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad caved into pressure by relinquishing the leadership of the Ministry of Oil and appointing Mohammad Aliabadi as the interim oil minister, the head of Parliament’s energy commission has challenged that choice, saying the president has appointed someone with no expertise for such a sensitive role. » read more

Concern over health of jailed human rights lawyer

The family of jailed Iranian lawyer Mohammad Seifzadeh is gravely concerned about his well being and claims no information is available on his judicial case.

The Campaign for Human Rights in Iran quotes Seifzadeh’s wife, Fatemeh Golzar, saying: “A month after the arrest of Mr. Seifzadeh in Orumiyeh [a city in northwestern Iran], he was transferred to Evin Prison. He has been held there for more than a month, and we are hoping that on Thursday we will be allowed to visit him in person.” » read more

Activists call for probe into death of Haleh Sahabi

Iran’s Council of Nationalist-Religious Activists has called on the Islamic Republic judiciary to investigate the death of Haleh Sahabi at her father’s funeral on Wednesday and the involvement of security forces there. » read more

Iran supports end of state of emergency in Bahrain

Iran said it welcomes the end of Bahrain’s longstanding state of emergency, calling it a positive step toward meeting the people’s demands. » read more

Iranian labour activist released on bail

Mansour Osanlou, a prominent Iranian labour activist and head of the Tehran Vahed Transit Drivers Union, was released today on bail. » read more

Ahmadinejad proposes new caretaker for oil ministry

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has caved to pressure and appointed a new caretaker to oversee the Ministry of Oil. » read more

Forces shut down Sahabi memorial service

Iranian security forces prevented today’s memorial service for Ezzatollah Sahabi from taking place. » read more

Haleh Sahabi given speedy burial

Activist Haleh Sahabi, who died yesterday at the funeral of her dissident father, was buried Wednesday night by Iranian security forces.

Opposition websites report that the Sahabi family had intended to hold their own ceremony, but security forces took possession of her remains by force and transferred her to Lavasan, northeast of Tehran, for a swift burial. » read more

Iranian militia engineers to promote "clean internet"

Eight thousand paramilitary members of Iran’s Basij stand ready to promote the concept of a “clean internet” across the country, the militia group’s IT Engineers Organization has announced. » read more

Haleh Sahabi dies in scuffle at father’s funeral

Haleh Sahabi, the daughter of Iranian dissident Ezzatollah Sahabi died from a heart attack after security forces descended upon her father’s funeral.

Mizan website, the news outlet associated with the Nationalist-religious Coalition wrote: “A security official tried to grab a photo of Mr. Sahabi that Haleh Sahabi was pressing against her chest. The force of his action and her resistance caused her to fall, and then she did not rise.” » read more

Iran blames pilot error for delay in Merkel’s flight

Iranian officials are blaming pilot error for yesterday’s extraordinary incident, in which a plane carrying German Chancellor Angela Merkel was barred from Iranian airspace for two hours.

Mehr News Agency cites National Security Commission spokesman Kazem Jalali, who said Merkel’s flight to India was delayed because “the pilot announced a wrong code.”

Jalali added: “There was a change in the time of the flight, and the pilot communicated the wrong code, which in turn caused some delays.” » read more

Father, Daughter...For Ezatollah and Haleh Sahabi

Mana Neyestani

Parliament files charge against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

The Iranian Parliament has filed a charge with the judiciary against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for failing to appoint a caretaker to oversee the ministry of oil.

Mehr News Agency reports that Parliament decided to act with a vote of 165 to 1, with 13 abstentions. The motion was based on a report from the energy commission, which has deemed the president’s takeover of the oil ministry to be illegal.

Last month, Ahmadinejad announced he would temporarily take the helm of the ministry as it undergoes a merger with the ministry of energy. » read more