مهدي خلجي، مصاحبه با محمدحسين آغاسي (تهران)
Summary of Today's BroadcastRFE/RL Persian ServiceThursday, August 15, 2002
- Tehran denies sheltering al-Qaeda elements
- Judiciary arrests court expeditors
- Statements against Zarafshan's jailing
- MKO accuses Tehran of secret nuclear research
- Regime's cultural activities abroad
- Flood kills 36 in the Caspian province of Golestan
Tehran Denies Sheltering al-Qaeda Elements
* For the second time this week, the foreign ministry spokesman said Iran does not shelter al-Qaeda and Taliban elements. He said 150 al-Qaeda members of Arab origin, who had crossed the borders into Iran, were turned over to their respective governments. His remarks were a reaction to an item in the reformist website emrooz.com that said 400 al-Qaeda elements entered Iran. The arrests of fugitive terrorists in Iran could have been an opportunity for Tehran to mend relations with the US, says RFE/RL's Siavash Ardalan.
Judiciary Arrests 273 "Expeditors"
* In a crackdown on corruption and nepotism, the judiciary arrested 273 expeditors, according to judiciary chief Ayatollah Mahmud Shahrudi, who said those arrested did not work for the justice ministry. Tehran-based lawyer Mohammad-Hossein Aghasi tells RFE/RL that expeditors (kar-chaq-kon) claim they are able to fix any case through private connections with judges and top judiciary officials. He adds that many of those arrested are sons of high-level clerics in the judiciary and other power centers. (Mehdi Khalaji)
Reactions to Jailing of Lawyer Naser Zarafshan
* The union of British and Irish writers, as well as Iranian writers associations both in and out of Iran, have issued statements condemning the jailing of Naser Zarafshan, a Tehran lawyer who began serving a five year jail term for "revealing government secrets." Zarafshan represented some of the relatives of victims of the 1998 serial murders of dissidents for which four intelligence ministry agents were convicted. A group of prominent exiled Iranian writers said in their statement that by sending Zarafshan to jail, those who ordered the murders punish Zarafshan for his probe into the killings. (Fereydoun Zarnegar)
MKO Accuses Tehran of Secret Nuclear Weapons Research
* In a press conference in Washington, the National Resistance Council, a unit of the Baghdad-based Mojehedian-e Khalq Organization (MKO), accused Tehran of secretly conducting nuclear weapons research at two sites in Natanz and Arak. The US State Department spokesman said the US considers MKO and its branches a foreign terrorist organization. US officials said they are aware of Tehran's secret nuclear weapons research, but cannot comment on the information offered by MKO. (Homayoun Majd, Washington)
A Review of the Regime's Cultural Activities Abroad
* A conference of the foreign ministry's foreign-based cultural attaches concluded today in Tehran that Iran's cultural activities abroad lack strategy and coordination. Mashallah Ajudani, director of the London-based Iranian studies foundation, tells RFE/RL that in the name of cultural activity, the regime spends large sums to fund Islamic propaganda institutions in various countries. A regime that suppresses expression within its borders cannot be a suitable ambassador for Iranian culture abroad, he adds.
Majles Asks Armed Forces to Evacuate Iran's Historic Sites
* In a letter to the Supreme Leader and the President, the Majles cultural committee requested that the armed forces, including the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corp, evacuate the many historic palaces and gardens they have been occupying since the Iran-Iraq war. Tehran-based archaeologist Jalal Ansari tells RFE/RL that historical palaces occupied by the armed forces suffer from neglect and disrepair and are in danger of destruction. The cultural heritage organization that is in charge of these sites is powerless in front of such organs as the IRGC and the army. (Mahmonir Rahimi)
36 Die in Golestan Province Flooding
* A government spokesman said a committee is looking into charges that neglect and mismanagement by local officials were responsible for the high number of fatalities and property damage that followed Tuesday's heavy flooding in the Caspian province of Golestan. Abolqasem Safavi, head of the regional emergency relief organization, tells RFE/RL that the affected area received 109 mm of rain in three hours, while its average annual precipitation level is 140 mm. Local officials did everything within their powers to rescue those stranded on flooded roads, he adds. In addition to the local and domestic radio and television, local authorities used foreign-based radio and television services to alert residents and tourists about flooded roads. (Jamshid Zand)
ARTS AND IDEAS
Daily Science Report
Possible Malaria Vaccine
* Researchers from Royal Melbourne Hospital and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology used a chemical called GPI that is produced by the parasite responsible for malaria to make an anti-Malaria vaccine that proved effective in tests on lab mice. (Fatemeh Aman, Washington)
Transgenic Mouse with Very Strong Muscles
* Dr. Bruce Spiegelman and his colleagues at Harvard University's Dana-Farber Cancer Institute identified a biochemical that triggers muscle growth in lab mice. The discovery may lead to new treatments for degenerative muscle diseases. (Fatemeh Aman, Washington)
Daily Medical Advice (Dr. Mansur Moslehi, Los Angeles)
Daily Internet Report: Reformists Close Down Their Websites
* Reformists have slowed down their Internet publishing activities. In the U.S., a 21-year old Iranian-born politician launched his mayoral campaign in Orange County using the Internet and President Khatami's campaign slogan: transparency and accountability. (Behnam Nateghi, New York)
Daily Book Review
* RFE/RL's Tehran-based book critic Kamran Fani reviews "The Book of Sinbad" by the 12th Century poet Azodi Yazdi, edited by Mohammad Jafar Mahjub.
Review of 1953 Coup
* In the third installment of RFE/RL series on the 1953 US-backed pro-Shah coup that removed populist Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddeq, Oxford University professor Homayoun Katouzian discusses the rivalries and disputes among the domestic political groups of the time.
Today in history (Gholamhossein Mirzasaleh, Tehran)
Weekly Soccer News and Commentary (Mehrdad Masudi, London)
Song and Lyrics
* RFE/RL's music critic plays Zoroaster by 1970's pop singer Googoosh.
* Los Angeles-based DJ Afshin Gorgin plays a selection of Persian pop tunes.
* In an interview with government newspaper "Iran," Ayatollah Mohammad-Baqer Hakim, head of the Tehran-backed Iraqi opposition group "High Council of the Islamic Revolution of Iraq, says he opposes US military intervention in Iraq, but the decision belongs to the US. (Farideh Rahbar, Cairo)
* Russia to build a floating nuclear power plant for China. (Mani Kasravi, Moscow)
* Rain and flooding in central Europe. (Shahram Mirian, Cologne)
* A review of US press articles on the Bush administration's Iraq policy. (Fariba Mavedat, London)
* Indian prime minister accused Pakistan of supporting terrorism. (Siavash Ardalan)
حفاظت اطلاعات قوه قضائيه اعلام كرد 273 كارچاق كن دستگاه قضائي بازداشت شدند. آيت الله محمود شاهرودي، رئيس قوه قضائيه جمهوري اسلامي گفت كارچاق كن ها، عضو دادگستري نبودند. محمدحسين آغاسي، حقوقدان و وكيل دادگستري در تهران، در مصاحبه با راديوآزادي مي گويد: در دستگاه قضائي كارچاق كن به كساني مي گويند كه نقش كاذب وكيل را بازي مي كنند ومدعي هستند كه مي توانند كار افراد را در دادگستري و ادارات گوناگون راه بياندازند. آنها معولا مدعي داشتن ارتباط با مقامات موردنظر ارباب رجوع مي شوند. وي مي گويد بعضي از فرزندان ذكور مقامات بلندپايه و روحاني قوه قضائيه (آقازاده ها)، كه قبل از تشكيل پرونده شهرام جزايري تحت تعقيب قرار گرفتند، به كارچاق كني متهم شدند. يكي از آنها با اغفال يك شركت خصوصي مبالغ كلاني براي حل و فصل كار آنها در ديوان كشور يا مقاطع ديگر دادرسي پول گرفته بود. وي مي افزايد: دستگيري كارچاق كن ها نشانه ديگري از مصداق سخنان رئيس قوه قضائيه در باره به ويرانه تبديل شدن دادگستري ايران توسط مقامات جمهوري اسلامي است كه قضات باسابقه و باسواد و پاك و مستقل را اخراج كردند و به كساني حكم قضائي دادند كه براي حفظ موقعيت خود ناچار هستند به مقامات بالاتر و سياسي منتصب در قوه قضائيه، امتياز بدهند و مواردي ديده شد كه با يك تلفن، مسير يك پرونده تغيير كرد.