News from Iran – Week 20 – 2013


Prisoners’ News


  • Ayoub Asadi, Kurdish political activist, transferred to Kashmar to serve his 20 year sentence.
  • Emergency transfer of Dervish lawyer Amir Eslami to hospital after heart attack.
  • Fakhroldin Faraji, Kurdish political activist, transferred to Tabas to serve his 30 year sentence.
  • Chengiz Ghadem-Kheiri , Kurdish political activist, transferred to Masjede-Soleiman to serve his 40 year sentence.
  • Kurdish activist on death row, Habibollah Golparipour, transferred to Urmiah prison from Semnan.
  • Namegh Mahmoudi, 62 years old political prisoner of Rejaei Shahr, transferred to hospital.
  • Mohammad-Hossein Rezaei, Kurdish political activist, transferred to Minoab to serve his 30 year sentence.



  • Javad Abou-Ali and Mohammad Danaei arrested in Behbahan.
  • Civil activist Behnam Bagheri arrested in a raid of his toy store in Maku.
  • Gonabadi dervish, Seyed Ebrahim Bahrami, arrested in Kavar.
  • Hamid-Reza Rezaei, vice-admiral in charge of special marine commandos in Sirjan arrested.
  • Abdollah Sadoughi, environmentalist, arrested at home in Tabriz.
  • Masoud Shamsnejad, law professor at Payam-e-Noor and Azad Universities of Urmia, and lawyer of death row prisoner Habibillah Golparipour, arrested.
  • Activist/poet, law student Jahanbakhsh Soltanzadeh (Salour) arrested in a raid of his home
  • Temporary detention order for Human Rights activists/journalists Masoud and Khosro Kordpour has been extended another 2 months – At the urging of his family Khosro Kurdpour ended his hunger strike after 25 days.



  • Ali Azad, workers’ rights activist, released on bail.
  • Shohreh Azami-Kassaei freed after serving her sentence.
  • Mahmoud Dordkeshan freed after serving 1 year in prison.
  • Political prisoner Pouria Ebrahimi released from Evin after completing 1 year sentence.
  • Workers’ Rights activist, Ghaleb Hosseini, arrested 19 March, released on 150 million toman bail.
  • Zhinous Nourani freed after serving her sentence.

D-Other News

  • Shirin Ebadi accepts Golden Lily of Florence on behalf of Nasrin Sotoudeh.
  • Imprisoned journalist, Rahman Ghahremanpour, denied transfer to hospital for refusing to wear prison uniform.
  • Mostafa Nili, political prisoner of Rejaei Shahr, not allowed furlough to attend his father’s funeral.
  • Prominent Iranian union leader, Mansour Osanlou, says he left country after death threats.
  • Political prisoners in Zahedan central prison launched a hunger strike to protest their continued illegal imprisonment and prevention of their basic rights.
  • Mohammad-Reza Ahmadi-Nia, member of Pen club, sentenced to 3 years in prison + 1 year suspended.
  • Court overturns the exile sentence of Mokhtar Asadi, member of Teacher’s Union.
  • Mohsen Ghashghaeizadeh sentenced to 2 years.
  • Sirwan and Shirzad Hossein Panahi, Kurdish civil activists sentenced to 6 months each.


News of injustice in Iran

  • One hanging in Kermanshah on Sunday.
  • Three hangings in Rajaei-Shahr on Wednesday.
  • One public hanging in Noshahr.
  • Seven hangings in Rasht prison.


University – Culture

  • 8 booths closed and 883 books withdrawn at Tehran International Book Fair.
  • Mohammad-Rezā Lotfi’s concert canceled by ministry of Culture and Guidance.



  • Khatoon Abad Copper strikers attacked by the guards.
  • “Bouazizi of Ahwaz”, Mehdi Hadi Mojadam, dies of burns injuries.
  • 400 building workers protest in Seyyed Alshohada mosque in Shariati Street of Tehranpars.
  • Taxi drivers are on strike in Sanandaj
  • Journalists of Shahrvand go on strike.
  • 150 bus drivers of Tehran protest in front of Tehran Town Hall.


Iran abroad

  • Afghanistan says nine migrants killed by Iranian border guards.
  • Lotfollah Forouzandeh, Iranian Vice President, meets Head of Turkish Parliament in Ankara.
  • Iranian convicted over Nigeria arms.
  • US to block sales of gold to Iran in sanctions pressure.
  • First group of 14 Iraqi members of MKO moved to Albania.
  • Minister of Industry, Mines and Trade leaves for Vietnam.
  • Two Iranian diplomats declared “personae non grata” by Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Security Ministry.


Iran Economics

  • Akhshan seat-belt factory closure in Shiraz leaves 500 unemployed.
  • Iran banned luxury car imports (Benz + Porsche).
  • South Korea cut crude imports from Iran by half in April.
  • Sharp decline in IRI Shipping Lines revenues.


Iran Politics

  • A total of 686 hopefuls have registered for Iran’s presidential election.
  • 35 reformist candidates disqualified in municipal elections.
  • Guardian Council extends deadline to announce final list of Iran presidential candidates to May 21.
  • 100 Majlis deputies ask Gardians Council not to approve candidacy of Rafsanjani and Mashaei.
  • 2 sites close to candidate Rahim Mashaei filtered.
  • Vice President Rahimi withdraws presidential candidacy.
  • Foreign Minister Spokesman resigns amid presidential bid.
  • Ayatollah Sistani deems that being a candidate at the presidential election is a duty for Rafsanjani.
  • The Reformists Advisory Council and The Participation Front have officially endorsed Hashemi Rafsanjani.
  • The manager of Keyhan newspaper threatens Rafsanjani of clashes with Hezbollah and Supreme Guide support.
  • Young Reformists supporters of Rafsanjani were prevented from holding a pre-approved meeting in Rasht.



  • Earthquake of magnitude 6.2 hits Southern Iran near Minab.
  • Ban on the Reuters bureau in Tehran lifted.

News from Iran – Week 19 – 2013


Prisoners’ News


  • Saeed Abedini stops hunger strike after his return to 350. – Transferred to Modarres hospital for stomach bleeding then back to Evin.
  • Abolfazl Abedini Nasr, Kamran Ayazi, Mohammad and Pouria Ebrahimi, Siamak Ghaderi, Amir Khosro Dalirsani, Saeed Madani, Abdollah Momeni and Mohamad-Hassan Yousefpour-Seifi stopped hunger strike after return to 350.


  • Mohammad Ehiaee workers’ rights activist, arrested at his work place
  • Fardin Ghaderi, Hamed Mahmoudinejad, Shahpour Hosseini, Jalil Mohammadi and Aram Zandi workers’ rights activists arrested in Sanandaj.
  • Mohammad Ghasem-Khani Bahram Saeedi, all workers at Iran Khodro, arrested at work.
  • Baztab news site managing director Ali Ghazali has been reported arrested.
  • Idris Karimi, Adel Moradi and Naaman Manouchehri arrested in Ravansar.
  • Eilghar Moazzenzadeh Azeri poet arrested with his brother Ehsan at their home in Meshkin-Shahr and transferred to Ardebil Intelligence detention center.
  • Baha’i Parisa Shahidi was arrested in a raid of her home. Her husband is imprisoned in Rajaei Shahr.


  • Ali Azad, workers’ rights activist, released on bail.
  • Shohreh Azami-Kasaei was freed at the end of her 8 month sentence.
  • Zhinoos Nourani was freed at the end of her 1 year sentence.

Other News

  • Saeed Abedini, Abolfazl Abedini Nasr, Kamran Ayazi, Mohammad Ebrahimi, Pouria Ebrahimi, Siamak Ghaderi, Amir Khosro Dalirsani, Saeed Madani, Abdollah Momeni and Mohamad-Hassan Yousefpour-Seifi launched a hunger strike to protest detention in Evin prison solitary after they protested against repressive conditions in Ward 350.

News of injustice in Iran

  • Davoud Alijani, Ahvaz pastor Farhad Sabok-Rouh and Naser Zamen-Dezfouli summoned to serve 1 year sentences in Sepidar prison.
  • Akbar Amini has been sentenced to 5 years in prison and 5 year ban from any political activity.
  • Mohammad Parsi and Pejman Zafarmand both sentenced to 3 years in prison and 5 years ban from any political activity.
  • Ayat Mehrali-Biglou, Shahram Radmehr, Mahmoud Fazli, Behboud Gholizadeh and Latif Hassani, Azeri political activists, sentenced to 9 years in prison.
  • Shahnaz Jayzan, wife of Pastor Sabok-Rouh, summoned to serve her 1 year sentence.
  • Gonabadi Dervish, Mehran Rahbari sentenced to 2 years in prison.
  • 3 public executions in Kermanshah on Monday.
  • 3 executions in Isfahan prison.
  • Flogging sentence carried out in public in Abiek.
  • 3 hangings in Shahroud on Thursday.
  • One hanging in Semnan on Thursday.

University – Culture

  • Internet proxies no longer effective in Iran.
  • Book of former President Rafsanjani banned at Tehran Book Fair.


  • The protest movement started by Kurdish men posting photographs of themselves dressed in women’s clothing in a Facebook campaignBeingawomanisnothumiliatingandshouldnotbeconsideredpunishment – started after police paraded a convicted criminal through the city of Marivan dressed in traditional Kurdish women’s clothing – continues to gain international media attention.

Iran abroad

  • Kenya jails two Iranians for life for plotting attacks.
  • Kuwait upheld a life sentence against 2 Iranians for their role in a pro-Iran espionage network.
  • Houtan Kian receives Dutch Lawyers for Lawyers’ award.
  • FM Salehi meets Bashar al-Assad in Damascus.
  • Yusuf Bin Alawi, Omani foreign minister arrives in Tehran.

Iran Economics

  • Iran cuts bread subsidies.
  • Statistical center reports show record inflation in March/April at 38.7%, and inflation over past 12 months at 29.8%.
  • Osve Iran factory closes; 24 workers fired.

Iran Politics

  • Head of the Pharmaceutical Division in the Food and Drug Organization resigns due to shortage of vital drugs, accuses Ahmadinejad government of managerial failure.
  • Raziyeh Omidvar is the first woman in the history of the Islamic Republic of Iran to stand as a candidate in the 11th presidential elections..


  • Islamic Dress Code: Compulsory staff uniforms for female employees of Tehran University.
  • Ali Parvin receives AFC Distinguished Service Award.
  • Earthquake strikes port in Hormozgan province.
  • Iran plunges 62 places in quality of life ranking in comparison with other countries over the past five years.

Gulf states sideline Arab League in Syria talks


The meeting of Arab foreign ministers scheduled to be held in the Saudi city of Jeddah over the Syrian crisis has been postponed indefinitely without explanation by the Arab League. This “emergency meeting” was to discuss the conflict and the replacement of the UN and international mediator Kofi Annan, who resigned last week after the failure of his peace efforts. The Algerian diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi was tipped to succeed him .

However, the foreign ministers of the six Gulf monarchies (Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain) held last night in Jeddah a meeting about the Syrian crisis. Now, this session is expected to take place Tuesday during an Islamic summit in the kingdom following the initiative of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia who seeks to mobilize the Muslim world in favor of the uprising in Syria.

Syria, a member of the OIC, “will not be represented at this summit,” according to Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, Secretary General of the Organization Islamic Cooperation (OIC), adding that a preparatory meeting of Foreign Ministers would be held Monday and should “decide on a suspension of Syria, recommended by representatives of member countries. ” The organization of this summit, which promises very sharp clashes between Iran, unwavering supporter of Syria, and the GCC, including Saudi Arabia, comes as the UN could not take a firm stand on this issue after the differences arising among members of the Security Council.

It would seem that those parties who declined Iran’s invitation to last Thursday’s “Friends of Syria” summit in Tehran have been forced by that event to step up their own efforts.

Leaders of the Gulf Arab States pose for a photo before the opening session of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Riyadh May 10, 2011. (Ho New/Courtesy Reuters)

Four days after launching its ground offensive to cleanse the rebels from Aleppo, tanks and warplanes of the regime of Bashar al-Assad continue to pound several districts of this metropolis in the North of the country. According to the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights (SOHR), the neighborhoods Shaar, Tariq al-Bab, Hanano, Bustan al-Qasr and Salaheddin are the target of violent firing of artillery by the army.

Shots were also heard in Damascus while the nearby towns of Al-Tal and Harsata were bombed, according to the SOHR.

In Homs, soldiers assisted by militiamen “executed” ten young people in the Shams neighborhood, according to the Syrian National Council, the main opposition coalition. The victims were selected from a crowd of 350 people gathered in one place, said SNC.

Clashes took place elsewhere in the province of Deraa (south), birthplace of the insurgency launched in March 2011 against the Assad regime.

In Beirut, a judicial source said that the Syrian security chief, General Ali Mamluk, is suspected of plotting attacks in Lebanon. Last week, the former Lebanese minister Michel Samaha was arrested . Samaha is a pro-Syrian figure.

Some content via Al Bawaba

How the Arab World Uses Facebook and Twitter


Social media has been often touted for the role it played in the popular uprisings that have spread across the Arab world since December 2010. Despite the buzz, you may be surprised that only 0.26% of the Egyptian population, 0.1% of the Tunisian population and 0.04% of the Syrian population are active on Twitter.

Of all the countries in North Africa and the Middle East, Twitter is most popular in Kuwait, where 8.6% of the population is active users, defined as those who tweet at least once per month. Facebook’s more popular throughout the region. In its most popular country, the U.A.E., some 36.18% of the population is on Facebook.

Khaled ElAhmad (who goes by the Internet alias Shusmo) created these two infographics, exploring Facebook and Twitter trends in the Arab world, using His data comes from a Dubai School of Government report on Arab Social Media.

Take a look through the two infographics, which also show growth of the social networks by country and overall membership stats. Did you expect more people to be active social media users? How do you think your country’s habits compare? You can also check out infographics on how China and India do social networking.


via How the Arab World Uses Facebook and Twitter [INFOGRAPHICS].