مينا بهارمست، مصاحبه با احمدزيدآبادي
Summary of Today's BroadcastRFE/RL Persian ServiceMonday, May 06, 2002
- Who blocks reforms in Iran?
- Court arraigns Yazdi, bars his defense attorney
- Judiciary's double standards in banning newspapers
- Student defender of independent political prisoners goes to jail
- Parents worry about the safety of their school going kids
- Transportation journalist reports on flight safety violations
- Central Bank Governor defends high interest rates
- Bazaar merchants receive more loans from banks than factory owners
- Iranian dentist runs in London Marathon
Zeydabadi: Khatami Should Define "Failure"
President Khatami has again said he would resign if his promised reforms fail to materialize, but claiming he did not wish to push Iran into "upheaval" he declined to name who is blocking his reforms. Reformist journalist Ahmad Zeydabadi says that Khatami does not indicate what constitutes failure of his reform policies. Zeydabadi, who has been sentenced to 23 months in prison and five years ban from journalism for criticizing the regime's Palestinian policy, tells RFE/RL that he does not think naming what Khatami calls "the hidden hands" would instigate social unrest. Unrest would more likely come from not disclosing the source of the problems that people deal with every day. (Mina Baharmast)
Majles MPs Protest Guardians Council Blocking Their Bills
* As the sixth Majles begins the second half of its 4-year term, MPs worry that their failure to deliver on campaign promises may cost them in the next Majles elections. They blame unelected conservative bodies - the Guardians and Expediency councils -- for blocking their bills. The MPs also complain about the lack of cooperation of organs under the Leader of Islamic Republic, such as radio and television and the judiciary, with the Majles investigative committees. (Siavash Ardalan)
Revolutionary Court Arraigns Yazdi, Bars His Lawyer
* A revolutionary court in Tehran arraigned Ebrahim Yazdi, Secretary General of the Freedom Movement of Iran (FMI), but freed him on 3 billion rials bail after the second session of interrogation. His lawyer, Mohammad Ali Dadkhah tells RFE/RL that the court barred him from defending Yazdi because of a complaint filed by the judge against Dadkhah, who was also barred from defending other nationalist-religious coalition members. Dadkhah says according to laws, a judge's complaint against the defense attorney disqualifies the judge, not the lawyer. (Amir-Mosaddegh Katouzian)
Two Journalists Comment about Recent Bans on "Iran" and "Bonyan" Newspapers
* The Judiciary's ban on two Tehran newspapers, "Bonyan" and "Iran," was done without due process, and judiciary chief Shahrudi's lifting of the ban on the government-owned "Iran" violate the constitutional principle of impartiality in the application of laws, says Jamshid Barzegar, a former "Iran" reporter. He tells RFE/RL that the conservatives try to gain control of reformist newspapers published by government organs. In addition to "Iran," published by the official news agency IRNA, the conservatives tried last year to change the management of Hamshahri, the organ of theTehran municipality. "Iran" and "Hamshahri" are the country's most popular newspapers, since are in color and carry lots of advertising.
* Tehran-based writer Gholam-Reza Javadi says the judiciary's double standards in the case of "Iran" and "Bonyan" reflects the country's political structure. He tells RFE/RL that the chief editor of "Iran" used to be head of propaganda at the office of President Khatami, and the prosecution of "Iran" may be an attack against Khatami's propaganda and cultural policies.
* The press court interrogated the writer, publisher and "Iran" newspaper reviewer of a book on women musicians. A quotation from a book claiming Prophet Mohammad enjoyed music and the sound of women singers was found blasphemous by the conservative religious establishment. The court also summoned the cultural ministry's censors who approved the book for publication, and the editor of the music supplement of "Iran" who printed the book review containing the offending quotation, along with the cultural ministry official in charge of books.
* Also, the press court tried the publisher of the banned reformist newspaper "Bahar" and the former publisher of state-owned reformist newspaper "Azad" last week. (Mehdi Khalaji)
Student Defender of Political Prisoners Jailed
* In interviews with political prisoners around Iran, the Students Committee to Defend Political Prisoners (SCDPP) collects information about torture and mistreatment of prisoners around Iran during interviews with prisoners themselves and publishes its findings on the internet. Iran's factional newspapers are not interested in jailed independent political activists who are not aligned with any of the regime's factions, according to Hasan Zarehzadeh, the secretary of SCDPP, who gave an interview with RFE/RL a day before he himself was thrown in jail. (Siavash Ardalan)
School Children's Safety
The drowning of five Tehran schoolgirls and their teacher in the central park boating incident has once again brought to the foreground the issue of school safety.
* Shiva Dowlatabadi, director of the Tehran-based Society to Protect Children complains about the lack of attention in Iran's schools to safety issues and preventive measures. She tells RFE/RL that schools are overcrowded, work in three shifts to meet the student overpopulation, and lack enough personnel.
* A mother of two schoolchildren tells RFE/RL that she worries about the safety of her kids at school. She says once when one of her sons had a cut near his eyes, the school sent her child home bleeding. She took him to a hospital emergency room for stitches. (Mahmonir Rahimi)
Safety Violations in Domestic Flights
* The safety of domestic and international flights has declined in Iran since the revolution because managers appointed to Iranian airlines lack training, says veteran transportation journalist Masud Mohajer. He tells RFE/RL that in violation of domestic and international safety codes, passengers are allowed to carry too many bags on board domestic flights, making passage in the cabin difficult. They fly more passengers than they have seats for, making the overcrowded flights dangerous for the crew who end up with no place to sit. Iran's fleet of American and European passenger jets are aging beyond repair and the second-hand Russian jets leased for Iran are no better. Iran has ordered new planes from, Airbus, expected to be delivered within two years, if US sanctions do not hold up the delivery. (Mina Baharmast)
Banking System's Credit Policies
* Bazaar merchants receive more loans from state-owned banks than factory owners, even mass unemployment means the government needs to makes more loans to the latter. In a conference on bank credit policies held in Tehran the central bank governor Mohsen Nourbakhsh defends high interest rates, and says interest rates below the rate of inflation discourage saving and mean subsidizing borrowers. (Fereydoun Khavand)
London-based Iranian Dentist Runs in the Marathon
* Dr. Koros Shirdel tells RFE/RL that runners in the London Marathon collect funds for charity. (Shahran Tabari)
Russia Plans North-South Corridor with Iran
* In a Moscow meeting, Iranian and Russian transportation officials discussed the north-south corridor linking Asia to Europe. (Mani Kasravi, Moscow)
Iranian Charity in Cologne Buys Hospital Equipment for Urumieh
* Urumieh-born Rahimi, the director of a Cologne-based charity says the proceeds from a multi-national music concert will be used to buy equipment for a cancer hospital in the city of Urumieh, center of West Azerbaijan province. (Shahram Mirian, Cologne)
* Three Hamas and Islamic Jihad members killed by Israeli forces. (Jamshid Chalangi, Cairo)
* Italy says it would allow six to eight of the armed Palestinians holed up in Bethlehem's Nativity church to study in Italy for four years. (Ahmad Ra'fat, Rome)
* Chirac beats Le Pen in a landslide. (Jean Khakzad, Paris)
* Milosevic interrogates the Kosovo Albanian leader who accuses him of genocide in testimony at The Hague trial. (Ahmad Ra'fat, Rome)
* Myanmar releases opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. (Alireza Taheri)
* Assadollah Vafa, a cabinet minister and advisor to the Afghan interim chief Hamid Karzai, tells RFE/RL that a delegation from the central government mediated between warring warlords at Khost, a southeastern town which was the scene of last week's armed battle between forces of two local rivals. Shahrad Masud, another Karzai advisor, who accompanied him in his two-day trip to Kandahar tells RFE/RL that Taliban's fugitive leader Momhammad Omar does not pose any security risk for the interim government, since Omar has lost his foreign support. (Golnaz Esfandiari, Kabul)
* Spiderman's $114 million breaks opening day records. (Amir-Mosaddegh Katouzian)
* Russia energy minister, in Washington this week, seeks to calm US worries about Russia's weapons deals with Iran. (Mani Kasravi, Moscow)
* Iraq resumes oil exports. (Farideh Rahbar, Cairo)
* Masud Barzani, leader of Iraq's Kurdish Democratic Party meets with Syrian president Bashar Asad after visiting European capitals. (Jamshid Chalangi, Cairo)
* Iranian political analysts Ahmad Salamatian and Ali Keshtgar comment about the French Presidential Elections. (Jean Khakzad, Paris)
ARTS AND IDEAS
Songs & Song Makers: Anoushirvan Rouhani
* Mahmoud Khoshnam, RFE/RL's music commentator discusses the music of composer of popular songs Anoushirvan Rouhani. Rouhani talks about his childhood and his decades of making songs for top singers.
A Review of Tehran Book Fair
* A spokesman for the national association of book publishers and booksellers Hasan Kiaian Musavi tells RFE/RL that this year the association took over the job of organizing the book fair from the cultural ministry. Writer Mohammad Qasemzadeh, a member of the board of Iranian Writers Association, tells RFE/RL that there were less problems this year at the fair, since the publishers' association was the fair's organizer, however, he adds, the publishers' association did not consult the writers' association about the fair, adding that last year the two associations came to terms on writers dues. (Bahman Bastani, London)
Classical Love Stories: Domes
* Persian classical texts scholar Sadredin Elahi continues with his recitation of the Legend of the Domes based on Haft-Peykar by Nezami.
Weekly medical advice program. (Dr. Mansur Moslehi, Los Angeles)
Progressive Music: Parviz Mahmoud and Rubic Grigorian
Mahmoud Khoshnam discusses the work of the two contemporary composers.
محمد خاتمي، رئيس جمهوري اسلامي، طي سخنراني در كنفرانس شوراهاي شهر و روستا از شوراها خواست به طور مستقيم به حل مشكلات مردم بپردازند و از سياست زدگي پرهيز كنند. رئيس جمهوري اسلامي جامعه ايران را آشفته توصيف كرد و گفت مايل نيست با مطرح كردن گلايه ها آن را آشفته تر سازد. وي تهديد كرد درصورت انحراف دولت از روند اصلاحات استعفا خواهد داد. احمد زيدآبادي، روزنامه نگار اصلاحگرا در تهران، در مصاحبه با راديوآزادي مي گويد اين دومين بار است كه خاتمي تهديد به استعفا را مطرح مي سازد ولي مشكل اصلي اين است كه خاتمي تعريفي از آنچه مصداق انحراف اصلاحات و عدم تحقق شعارهاي انقلاب مي داند را ارائه نمي كند. زيدآبادي مي افزايد: خاتمي مي بيند دولت كارآئي چنداني ندارد و روزبه روز بر مشكلات افزوده مي شود و مانع تحقق اصلاحات دست هاي پنهاني هستند كه خاتمي به آنها اشاره كرد. زيدآبادي مي گويد برخلاف نظر خاتمي، بيان صريح مشكلات و معرفي آنچه خاتمي دست هاي پشت پرده مي خواند از اغتشاش اجتماعي مي كاهد. نگفتن مسائلي كه همه مردم روز به روز با آثار آنها درگير هستند ولي نمي دانند از كجا ناشي مي شود جو اغتشاش را در جامعه تداوم مي بخشد.