Summary of Iran Stories in Today's BroadcastsBehnam NateghiFriday, September 12, 2003
<b>Iran's UN Envoy Says US Deprives Iran of Nuclear Power</b>
• Washington's apparent “intention to deprive Iran” of legitimate power plants was the reason for Iran's current problems with the International Atomic Energy Agency, Iran's permanent representative to the UN Javad Zarif said in an interview with the <i>New York Times</i>. “The political issue has led to the technical difficulties," he added. On Friday, the 35-member nuclear watchdog agency is expected to vote in Vienna to approve a resolution that would give Iran until Oct. 31 to answer the agency's questions about its nuclear program. (Amir Armin)
• After a five-day closed-door meeting in Vienna, the IAEA board of governors gave Iran until October 31, 2001, to prove that it does have a nuclear weapons program. (Amir-Mosaddegh Katouzian)
<b>Britain Releases on Bail Iran's Former Argentine Envoy</b>
• At an appeal at the High Court in London, the judge, Justice Royce said that there was no reason for not giving bail pending extradition proceedings after Argentina presented no clear evidence against Iran's former ambassador to Argentina Hadi Soleimanpour. The 47 year old former diplomat, along with seven other former officials of the Islamic regime, are wanted in Argentina for his role in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish cultural center, in which 85 died and more than 300 were injured. (Shireen Famili)
<b>Iranian Wrestling Team Pays Respect to September 11 Victims at Ground Zero</b>
• The Iranian national freestyle wrestling team, in New York for the international freestyle wrestling championship, paid respect to the September 11 victims by attending a ceremony at the Ground Zero and placing flowers on the sites. They arrived as the two memorial columns of light beamed at the nightly sky from the base of the twin main towers. The team spent the day on scales and in drawings for the first matches, which would begin on Friday at the Madison Square Garden. Head of the Iranian wrestling federation <b>Mohammad-Reza Taleqani</b> tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that on the anniversary of the tragic terrorist attack, he shared the grief of all the American people. He says the team has excellent chances of success.Championship wrestler <b>Mohammad Salahi</b>, on special diet to keep his weight within the standard limit, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that some of the Iranian wrestlers will face tough competition tomorrow, because they were not lucky in the drawing today. He adds that he is confident that many Iranian wrestlers will become world champions in their weight categories, since their training has been long and hard for them and their families. Heavyweight champion of Asia <b>Alireza Rezai</b> tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that drawing is irrelevant, because any wrestlers will eventually face his rival. (Behnam Natgeghi, New York)
<b>Jailed Dissident Sazegara Goes on Hunger Strike</b>
• Outspoken critic of the Supreme Leader and the Islamic constitution Mohsen Sazegara went on hunger strike to protest his detention. He was arrested during last June's 10-day pro-democracy demonstrations. Sazegara's lawyer <b>Shirzad Heydari Shahbazi</b> tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that holding Sazegara after he provided the 6-billion-rial bail set by the Islamic revolutionary court was illegal, because according to the law, no more than one warrant can be issued, regardless of the number of lawsuits against one defendant. (Leyli Sadr)
<b>Education Ministry Announces Gender Parity Plan</b>
• The Tehran province education administration announced that in order to promote gender parity among the elementary teachers, it will hire only male teachers in the future. He said 70 percent of Tehran schoolteachers are women. <b>Radio Farda</b>'s Paris-based education commentator <b>Said Peyvandi</b> says this plan is based on something other than concerns for education, and has no basis in tradition, public perception of teachers, and educational norms of the country and the world. Women teachers work better with younger students, and more women are enrolled in teaching, psychology and social studies universities. (Maryam Ahmadi)
<b>Radical Shiite Cult Leader Attends Khomeini Ceremony in Tehran</b>
• Najaf-based radical Shiite cult leader Moqtada Sadr, 22, in an interview on Thursday with the London-based Arabic daily Al-<i>Hayat</i> denied that he was becoming a tool for Iran's policy in Iraq. Sadr said unlike Iraqis, some in Iran do not believe in the clerical rule. He added that he plans to get closer to the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution of Iraq, as well as the Iraqi Sunis. (Amir-Mosaddegh Katouzian)
<b>Roundtable: Iran's Nuclear Program and the World Community</b>
In today's roundtable, former head of Iran's nuclear energy organization <b>Akbar Etemad</b>, former information minister </b>Dariush Homayoun</b> and political analyst <b>Mehran Barati</b> discuss the international reaction to Iran's nuclear program.
• Akbar Etemad says, like any sovereign independent nation, Iran has the right to acquire nuclear technology, and needs access to advance technologies for its own modernization. The decision to develop weapons comes after obtaining the technology, and is another matter.
• Darioush Homayoun says the last thing the sensitive region needs is for the neighboring countries to exercise their right and obtain nuclear weapons. Furthermore, Iran is a failed country, with no laws and no coherent government. It is not clear who's finger will be on the bomb's trigger. Also, Iran is under no threat to justify nuclear defense as deterrence.
• In the 21st Century it is foolish to think that any country can gain political advantage by developing nuclear weapons. Using these bombs would affect all neighbors, including the attacking country. The oppressive forces within Iran's government insist on developing atomic power to protect the regime against pressures from abroad.
<b>Norway Suspends Oil and Gas Deal with Iran on News of Bribery</b>
• Norway suspended its national oil company's $125 million deal with Iran to develop south Pars offshore oil and gas field, after the company admitted that it paid a $15 million bribe to Mehdi Hashemi, son of former President Ali-Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani. Stockholm-based journalist <b>Abbas Shokri</b> tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that Norway's business police uncovered documents in nightly raid to the offices of the state-owned oil company Stat Oil. Rafsanjani has repeatedly denied taking bribes. (Bahman Bastani)
<b>Berlin Iranians Honor Victims of 1988 Mass Prison Executions</b>
• In a ceremony followed by lectures, hundreds of Iranians in Berlin remembered thousands of victims of the 1988 mass executions of political prisoners in jails. Berlin-based contemporary history scholar <b>Changiz Pahlavan</b>, who spoke at the event, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that one outcome of these anniversaries is to attract the attention of the world community to these atrocities, because they are not being talked about in the western press. (Parviz Mardani, Berlin)
خبرگزاري فرانسه گزارش داد آژانس بين المللي انرژي اتمي تا 31 اكتبر به ايران مهلت داد تا ثابت كند كه بطور پنهاني در پي دستيابي به سلاح هاي اتمي نيست. به گفته انيس حسين، نماينده مالزي در آژانس و سخنگوي جنبش غير متعهد ها 35 عضو هيات مديره به رايزني خود پايان دادند و بدون آنكه قطعنامه پيشنهادي به راي گذاشته شود چنين تصميمي را گرفتند. علي صالحي نماينده جمهوري اسلامي بعنوان اعتراض جلسه را ترك كرد. كمال خرازي پس از بازگشت از سفر بالكان اظهار اميدواري كرده بود هيات مديره آژانس دربرابر فشارها تسليم نشود و مسايل سياسي را در همكاري ايران با اين آژانس دخالت ندهند. اكبر هاشمي رفسنجاني، رئيس مجمع تشخيص مصلحت نظام در خطبه هاي نماز جمعه گفت آنچه در وين مي گذرد يك جريان ظالمانه، يكطرفه و زورگويانه است.