Category Archives: Iran

Iranian forces deploy some tanks (probably UK made Chieftain FV4201) near the city of Shiraz

Ten people have been killed overnight in anti-government protests sweeping Iran, according to state TV.

The demonstrations, which erupted on Thursday in Iran’s second city of Mashhad, are the biggest show of dissent seen since the huge rallies of the Green Movement were brutally suppressed in 2009.

Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli-Larijani called for a crackdown on “rioters” and “vandals” on Monday, according to state television.

“Some individuals are exploiting the situation. This is wrong,” he said.

State TV said armed protesters had tried to take over some police stations and military bases, but faced serious resistance from security forces.

Read More At:

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-42532784

 

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Video reportedly shows Iranian forces moving towards Mashhad, but the convoy would seem trasporting Russian-made S-300 missile systems (Air Defence), is Tehran fearing something bigger than a protest?

Iranian police warned antigovernment protesters against staging new rallies after arresting dozens of demonstrators in Tehran and the western city Kermanshah, even as the United States called for a “peaceful transition” of government in Iran.

Speaking on December 29 after a second day of protests against price hikes that turned political and spread to multiple Iranian cities, Mohsen Hamadani, a deputy governor of Tehran Province, was quoted by state media as saying that law enforcement agencies would take tough measures against any future gatherings.

“There is no authorization for such protests,” he was quoted as saying.

Despite the warning from Iranian authorities, the U.S. State Department and White House issued statements condemning the arrests and demanding that Tehran allow free expression by the protesters.

“There are many reports of peaceful protests by Iranian citizens fed up with the regime’s corruption and its squandering of the nation’s wealth to fund terrorism abroad,” said White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders.

“The Iranian government should respect their people’s rights, including their right to express themselves. The world is watching,” she said.

The State Department’s spokeswoman said U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was personally urging support for what he has described as “elements inside of Iran that would lead to a peaceful transition of government.”

“We urge all nations to publicly support the Iranian people and their demands for basic rights and an end to corruption,” said spokeswoman Heather Nauert.

The protesters got some encouragement from Iranian clergy as well.

“Their protests, as well as other people’s reaction to high prices, are unquestionaby just,” said Ahmad Alam al-Hoda, a Friday prayer-leader and mid-ranking cleric in Iran’s second most populous city, Masshad, where the protests began on December 28.

But al-Hoda also questioned whether the protests weren’t also providing “food for hostile media” whose goal is “propagating sedition,” using terms often used to described independent news outlets.

In an unprecedented comment, the head of Mashhad’s revolutionary court, Hossein Haydari, said: “We consider protest to be the people’s right, but if some people want to abuse these emotions and ride this wave, we won’t wait and will confront them.”

Other clerics condemned the protests as “anti-Islam” and said Israel and the United States were behind them.

But the demonstrators were urged on by the exiled former Crown Prince of Iran, Reza Pahlavi, who said that “the uprising, once again showed that overthrowing theocracy in Iran is a national demand.”

Earlier on December 29 in Kermanshah, semiofficial news agencies Fars and Mehr reported that police dispersed a rally of some 300 people who chanted “Political prisoners should be freed” and “Freedom or death.”

Unconfirmed reports say that that up to 50 people were arrested in a demonstration in Kermanshah, on December 29, a day after hundreds protested against high prices and shouted political slogans in Mashhad.

Footage on social media showed protesters in Kermanshah’s central Azadi Square chanting “”Death to the dictator” and “The nation is struggling in poverty; The leader is trying to act as God.”

Various chants appeared to target both Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, without naming him, and President Hassan Rohani.

Similar protests were reported in several other cities, including Rasht, Ahvaz, Ghazvin, Qom, Esfahan, and Hamadan among others.

Read More At:

https://www.rferl.org/a/iran-rallies-price-protests-kermanshah-mashhad/28945966.html

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What is the need for the US to develop another big military base when ISIS is facing near total defeat in Syria?

Future plans of the United States regarding the Syrian crisis include maintaining a military presence in the country and establishing a new local government in areas where the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is predominantly led by the PKK’s Syrian affiliate People’s Protection Units (YPG), have been trained, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

According to the U.S. daily, the Trump administration does not want to leave the stage to the Assad regime after the Daesh terror group is completely defeated in the country.

This intention was interpreted in the piece as a “potentially open-ended commitment that could draw the U.S. into conflict with both Syria and Iran.”

The Washington Post also cited U.S. officials as saying that the current presence in Syria would be used in favor of the SDF, fearing that an “abrupt withdrawal” could lead to the Assad regime’s political survival.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis also said last week that the country intended to set the right conditions for a “diplomatic solution” in the area.

“We’re not just going to walk away right now,” he added.

According to official figures, 503 U.S. soldiers are currently stationed in Syria with the aim of training the PKK’s Syrian offshoot-dominated SDF. However, experts claim that the actual number is much higher.

Meanwhile on Wednesday, Turkey, Iran and Russia agreed on holding a Syrian People’s Congress to find a permanent solution to the Syrian crisis during a trilateral meeting in the coastal Russian city of Sochi.

Turkey, Russia and Iran are the guarantor countries that brokered a cease-fire in Syria in December 2016, leading to the Astana talks, which are running parallel to the Geneva talks for peace in Syria. The three countries have carried out negotiations in the Kazakh capital since then and agreed on the formation of five de-escalation zones in Syria.

Syria has been locked in a deadly civil war since early 2011, after the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with brutality, leading to the death of thousands of people and to the displacement of more than 10 million others.

Read More At:

https://www.dailysabah.com/syrian-crisis/2017/11/23/us-intends-to-maintain-military-presence-in-syria-after-daesh-defeat

While the Trump administration celebrates a new deal meant to freeze the battlefield in southern Syria, the Assad regime and Iran are preparing for the next phase of the long-running war, in which they will attempt to re-conquer the rest of the country. Whether Iran succeeds depends largely on whether the United States acknowledges and then counters that strategy.

Tehran is pouring thousands of fighters into newly acquired territories and building military bases. Although U.S.-supported forces hold territories east of the Euphrates River in Syria’s southeast, as well as along the borders of Israel and Jordan in the southwest, Iran has stated its intention to help Bashar al-Assad retake all of Syria.

Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps commander Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani has been recently spotted in the eastern Syrian city of Deir al-Zour, showing how high a priority it is for Iran to take the oil-rich land nearby. Soleimani has also been spotted near the town of Abu Kamal, which sits just across the border from the Iraqi city of Qaim and is the last piece of the land bridge Iran seeks to establish from Tehran to Beirut.

Read More At:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/the-us-must-prepare-for-irans-next-move-in-syria/2017/11/19/c8ee0906-cbc0-11e7-8321-481fd63f174d_story.html?utm_term=.a686ced9f8f1

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US deploys fresh troops into Kuwait

Iran on Saturday held the heavily choreographed pageant of anti-Americanism that marks the anniversary of the 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran as relations with President Donald Trump’s administration worsen and the fate of its nuclear agreement with world powers is unresolved.

Thousands gathered on the campus of the former embassy, called a “den of espionage,” where a ballistic missile was displayed. News agencies described it as a Sejil surface-to-surface missile with a range of 1,200 miles. It was the first time Iran displayed a missile during the annual gathering.

Later in the day, the semi-official Tasnim news agency, which has ties to the elite Revolutionary Guard, said the missile was a Qadr-F that has the same range as a Sejil.

Iran has paraded its missile capability in recent months in a show of defiance to Trump, whose administration has said Tehran’s development of ballistic missiles violates the spirit of the nuclear agreement signed in 2015.

Last month, Trump declined to certify Iran’s compliance with the agreement — under which Iran curbed uranium enrichment in exchange for relief from international sanctions. Trump’s decision did not undo the agreement, which European countries and Iran continue to support, but allows Congress to decide whether to reimpose certain sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Read More At:

http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2017/nov/05/iran-adds-missile-to-annual-anti-u-s-pa/

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