Sunday, September 14, 2008

NEWS))))))

Iranians stage a sit-in outside UN headquarters asking for Ashraf residents’ rights Supporters of the Iranian resistance and families of Ashraf residents in New York staged a demonstration and started a sit-in in front of the United Nations headquarters asking UN Secretary General to guarantee protection and rights of Ashraf residents according to the Fourth Geneva Convention and the international law. At the beginning of the sit-in, participants described the threats facing the Ashraf residents by Iran’s clerical regime and referred to the legal status of Ashraf residents based on international conventions and laws and asked for immediate measure of the UN Secretary General for guaranteeing these rights.The speakers of the sit-in were Lloyd Land, the progressive reverend from Staten Island, Moslem Eskandar Filabi, Mohammad Qorbani, Iranian national champion wrestler and former world champion, representatives from Ashraf residents’ families and the American Committee for support of Ashraf Residents.Reverend Lloyd Land said in his speech: How can somebody trust a regime that arrests 1600 persons in one night? How could it be trusted not to conspire against its main opposition and how it could be guaranteed protection of that regime’s opposition? Reminding historical instances of human tragedies, he stressed on the United Nations responsibility on this issue and asked UN to prevent a human tragedy.Participants delivered a letter addressed for Ban Ki-moon regarding asking his immediate intervention for prevention of Ashraf residents and prevention of a human catastrophe to the bureau of the UN Secretary General.


Tehran targets journalists
The Guardian, September 11, reported that the Iranian authorities are cracking down on media freedom, especially reporters who dare to cover the persecution of ethnic minorities.The escalating persecution of journalists in Iran is symptomatic of the regime’s fundamental weakness, despite its macho posturing and tyrannical repression. President Ahmadinejad and his clerical cronies are afraid. They have concluded that censorship of the media is necessary to save their ugly regime. They are also prepared to jail and, in some cases, execute reporters who dare to tell the truth about their tyranny.In one sense, Ahmadinejad is right. The truth is dangerous. If Iranians knew about the massive scale of human rights abuses by their government it would arouse huge popular discontent. For this reason, Tehran is determined to keep people in the dark. It dare not allow the open flow of news and information. Such openness would reveal the full extent of its savage misrule, including the torture of students, arrest of trade union leaders, beating of peaceful protesters and suppression of women’s rights campaigners.Much of Ahmadinejad’s most brutal suppression is heaped on the country’s minority nationalities, such as the Arabs, Balochs and Kurds. Most Iranians would be aghast if they knew about the barbarism of Tehran’s ethnic persecution. Knowing the facts could spark an uprising. That’s why Ahmadinejad is clamping down.

A 19-year-old sentenced to death
National Council Resistance of Iran said in a statement on Sep. 10: In the most recent death sentence passed on for juveniles, a 19-year-old indentified only by his first name, Hossein, soon will face gallows for the alleged crime committed when he was 17. In a letter published by his attorney, Hossein says that under torture he was forced to confess to a murder charge he had never committed. Despite his letter on September 5th the regime’s Supreme Court upheld the lower court’s ruling that he was guilty of the crime and should be put to death. The Iranian regime is the only government in the world which executes minors despite being a party to all conventions forbidding it. Since the start of the year six juveniles were hanged in Iran; the most recent being that of Reza Hejazi and Behnam Zare. Both cases brought condemnation from the international community. In a statement the office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) slapped the inhuman mullahs’ regime for violating 'international law' by executing juveniles.The human rights body expressed grave concern over recent execution of minors and the imminent danger of execution facing two other young men.'Reza Hejazi is believed to have been executed on August 19 and Behnam Zare a week later on August 26. It says these young people are reported to have been 15 and 16 years old when they committed their crimes,' said the UN agency.

Hundreds of workers rallied in Ahwaz to protest 6 months unpaid salaries
Chanting 'death to despot', hundreds of Ahwaz pipe-making company workers rallied in the city. The demonstrators asked for their last 6 months unpaid salaries. This rally took place on Sunday and started from Martyrs Square towards Naderi cross section. The suppressive State Security Force agents surrounded the demonstrators to prevent spreading out of the rally and joining the people to it.

IAEA probe stalls, Iran slowly boosts atom enrichment
Reuters reported on Sep 12 that a U.N. watchdog inquiry into whether Iran covertly researched how to assemble an atom bomb appears to have stalled while Tehran slowly but steadily builds up a sensitive uranium-enrichment program, diplomats say.They expect this to be reflected in an International Atomic Energy Agency report on Monday at a time of faltering pressure on Iran, with Russia and Western powers at loggerheads over Georgia and the Bush administration on the way out.In May, the IAEA said Iran seemed to be withholding information needed to explain intelligence allegations that it had fused projects to process uranium, test high explosives and modify a missile cone in a way suitable for a nuclear warhead.IAEA Director Mohamed ElBaradei called on Iran then for 'full disclosure' -- namely, going beyond flat denials without providing access to sites, documentation or relevant officials for interviews to substantiate their stance.Follow-up talks were held in Vienna and Tehran over the summer, but appear to have hit a wall, said diplomats accredited to the IAEA, who asked for anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly on confidential matters.'The word out is -- no progress on clarifying possible military dimensions to the program,' said a European diplomat who, like others, cautioned that a complete picture would emerge only in the pending report by ElBaradei. Two diplomats said Iran refused IAEA access in August to workshops possibly involved in redesigning missile cones.'We are told the report will be negative,' said another diplomat. Others said Iran had cut cooperation with the IAEA to the minimum under its nuclear safeguards accord with the agency. That means allowing routine, limited inspections of declared nuclear sites to go on, but not granting extra access Iran says would compromise its security and involve solely conventional military installations beyond the IAEA’s writ.'They don’t want visits to national defense sites,' said a senior diplomat versed in Iran-IAEA dealings. 'It’s not just a simple tale of Iranian stonewalling. But there’s a stalemate. The veracity of the alleged (bomb)
Western powers could seek a resolution at the September 22-26 meeting of the IAEA’s 35-nation Board of Governors demanding Iranian compliance, depending on how downbeat the report is, but such pressure would be largely symbolic.Iran says it is enriching uranium not to yield atom bomb fuel, as Western powers suspect, but only to run nuclear power stations so it can export more of its oil and gas wealth.But the Islamic Republic hid enrichment work until Iranian opposition exiles exposed it in 2002. IAEA investigations since then have been unable to verify the activity is wholly peaceful because of restricted access and a lack of Iranian transparency.

Iran conceals significant parts of their nuclear development programme
Daily Telegraph, wrote that according to the latest western intelligence reports, Iranian regime appears to have intensified its efforts to conceal significant parts of its nuclear development programme. Telegraph added: US spy satellites have detected several installations that intelligence officials believe are being used by Iran for a nuclear project that has not been declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the UN-sponsored body responsible for monitoring Iran’s nuclear programme. One facility is located in the Amir Abid residential district of Tehran, where western nuclear experts believe the Iranians are conducting experiments with the sophisticated P2 centrifuge. Another suspicious site, whose existence British officials recently made public, is at Darhavin in south-west Iran, 200 miles from the Bushehr nuclear power plant. After Foreign Office officials expressed their concerns about it, the Iranians acknowledged they were building another nuclear reactor. Suspicions that Iran has resumed work on its clandestine nuclear weapons programme have deepened after the discovery by nuclear inspectors that significant quantities of enriched uranium are unaccounted for at Iran’s uranium conversion facility at Isfahan, where raw uranium 'yellow cake' undergoes the first stage of the enrichment cycle. So far, the Iranians have failed to come up with an adequate explanation for these discrepancies, and until they do the drumbeats of war are unlikely to subside.

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Associated France Press reported that Iran has shut down more than 200 eateries and warned 26000 people for violating a ban on eating and offering food before sunset during Ramadan, Iran's deputy police chief was quoted as saying. "Since the beginning of Ramadan more than 26000 people, who had eaten in public, or vendors selling food during the day, have received a warning in 27 provinces," Kargozaran newspaper quoted Hossein Zolfaghari as saying. He added that "208 businesses have been shut down in this regard" during the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims are required to abstain from eating, drinking, smoking and having sex from dawn to dusk. Iranian police issued a stern warning before the September 2 start of Ramadan to crack down on businesses selling food -- with the exception of supermarkets and grocery stores -- before the sunset breaking of the fast. They also said people eating in public would be confronted. For more than a year, Iranian police patrols have been ubiquitous on the streets to enforce a nationwide crackdown on appearance and behaviour deemed as immoral or un-Islamic.