Summary of Today's BroadcastRFE/RL Persian ServiceFriday, August 23, 2002
- Iran and Turkey send troops to Iraqi border
- US-Russia dispute over Iran and Iraq
- Iran to export doctors to Gulf
- Government arrests three on flood charges
- Former Esfahan prayer leader meets students
- Epic opera in Tehran features a female singer
- Free trade zones fail
Iran and Turkey Deploy Forces around Iraqi Kurdistan
* Kurdish sources report that Yekan-e Vizhe, special unit of Iran's law enforcement force, along with army and Revolutionary Guards units, have been deployed to the Iran-Iraq border. The army helicopters began patrolling the border area in the guise of pursuing drug traffickers. Also, Turkey has concentrated forces along its border with Iraq. (Jamshid Zand)
US-Russia Dispute over Russian Cooperation with Iran and Iraq
* Russia's cooperation with Iran and Iraq continues to cloud US-Russia relations, writes the Economist. (Fariba Mavedat, London)
Iran to Export Specialist Physicians
Atieh Sazan-e Hafez, a Tehran-based private company, exported 110 Iranian doctors, nurses and midwives to the Persian Gulf Arabic countries, according to Abolqasem Mussavi, director of the medical insurance organization (Sazeman-e Khadamat-e Darmani). He said Britain, Sweden and Arab countries have expressed interest in recruiting Iranian doctors.
* Dr. Babak Qarai-Moqadam, head of Iran's general practitioners association, tells RFE/RL that exporting doctors abroad does not address the graveness of physician unemployment in Iran. He says more than 9,000 general practitioners and specialists are out of work and the number increases by 3,000 to 4,000 per year. He says the healthcare ministry should create employment opportunities in Iran, noting one reason for specialists' unemployment is the lack of referrals in Iran's healthcare system. (Golnaz Esfandiari)
Three Arrested for Golestan Floods
* Deforestation and the cultivation of sloping land increased the damage from last week's flood in Golestan province. Government spokesman Abdollah Ramezanzadeh said three were arrested on negligence and other charges related to the flood damages. He said changing the direction of the road through Golestan forests also increased flood damage. The Director of the Golestan province emergency relief organization says the agriculture ministry began a program to educate farmers about the hazards of cultivating land with slopes greater than 12 percent. Recent cultivation of more than 150,000 acres of slopes was the main cause of the heavy flood damage. (Jamshid Zand)
Resigned Esfahan Prayer Leader Meets with Students
* Esfahan prayer leader Ayatollah Jalaledin Taheri, who resigned two months ago in a letter critical of the regime, met yesterday with two student delegations from Islamic student councils of Tehran University and University of Medicine. He told the students that the government's ban on media discussion of his resignation has not prevented him from speaking at mosques and meeting with people. He said corruption investigations into his family would lead nowhere. (Fereydoun Zarnegar)
Epic Opera Rostam va Sohrab Premieres in Tehran
* Iranian-Armenian composer Loris Cheknavarian's epic opera Rostam va Sohrab, based on Ferdowsi's Shahnameh, will be staged at Tehran's Milad Hall for four performances later his week. A female Iranian singer's appearance in the role of Tahmineh will mark the first time since the revolution a woman has received permission to sing in public. RFE/RL's Mahmud Khoshnam says 125 musicians and singers from Austria, Armenia, the Netherlands and Estonia perform in the opera, which was performed in Armenia and Austria under the direction of Cheknavarian himself. (Golnaz Esfandiari)
Failure of Iran's Free Trade Zones
* Tehran-based economic journalist Ali Amir-Khani tells RFE/RL that lack of policy coordination between Iran's free trade zones and the heavy enforcement of Islamic rules of conduct contributed to the zones' failure to attract business and investors. (Fereydoun Zarnegar)
Iran Continues Support for Lebanon's Hezbollah
* Majles speaker Mehdi Karrubi assured a delegation from Lebanon's Hezbollah that Iran would continue its support. (Jamshid Chalangi, Cairo)
ARTS AND CULTURE
Daily Internet Report
* IT Iran, a Persian website, reported that Spiderman, the hacker who disrupted service of 178 Iranian websites last Tuesday, is an Iranian. Tehran economic daily Asia printed an e-mail interview with the hacker on Wednesday in which he said the companies hosting Iranian sites in the US do not have secure servers. IT Iran wrote that the hacker's familiarity with Iranian media and websites and the fact that all attacks were through an FTP computer based in Tehran, proves that Spiderman is Iranian and his IP address will soon be found. (Behnam Nateghi, New York)
Daily medical advice (Dr. Mansur Moslehi, Los Angeles)
Today in history (Gholamhossein Mirzasaleh, Tehran)
RFE/RL Special Review: Iran's Occupation by Allied Forces in WWII
* Oxford University professor and prominent scholar of Iran's contemporary history Homayoun Katouzian revisits the rise and fall of the Pahlavis and the political conditions that led to allied occupation of Iran during WWII.
Daily Book Review: Arjnameh
* RFE/RL's Tehran-based book critic Kamran Fani reviews Arjnameh-ye Shahriyari, edited by Parviz Rajabi and Mohsen Baqerzadeh and published in Tehran by Toos.
Civil Society and Human Rights
* Washington-based lawyer and human rights activist Mehrangiz Kar discusses Iran's legislative process and the role of the Guardians Council.
Daily Science Report
* PLL Therapeutics, the British company responsible for the cloned sheep Dolly, is developing genetically engineered hogs whose organs would not be rejected by the human body in transplants.
* Scientists from the Biomedical Primate Research Center in the Netherlands and the University of California, San Diego, say chimpanzees may have survived a catastrophic virus epidemic similar to HIV some two million years ago, which could explain why they are now immune to AIDS.
* US to spend $5 billion on research and production of vaccines against smallpox. (Fatemeh Aman, Washington)
* The US began broadcasting western and Arabic pop music to Arab countries, writes London's Economist. (Fariba Mavedat, London)
Song: Kenar-e Panjereh Benshin (Sit by the Window)
* RFE/RL's music critic Mahmud Khoshnam plays Keran-e Panjereh Benshin by Esfandiar Qarabaghi.
* Los Angeles DJ Afshin Gorgin plays a selection of Iranian pop tunes.
* Paris-based dancer Shahrokh Meshkin Qalam, who performed his rendition of Haft Peykar Nezami at London's Covent Garden, tells RFE/RL that he found the piece to reflect mutual relations among cultures. Also, Iranian performances at the Edinburgh festival. (Shahran Tabari, London)
RFE/RL's Roundtable: Morality and Modernism
* Washington-based sociologist Rasool Nafisy and Toronto University professor Ramin Jahanbeglu discuss morality, religion and modernism. (Homayoun Majd, Washington)
* US President George Bush expressed support for Pakistan's Pervez Musharraf, but US State Department spokesman Philip Richard said Musharraf's constitutional reforms would block democratic process. (Homayoun Majd, Washington)
* In separate incidents, Moscow railways director and a Russian MP were killed by assassins. (Mani Kasravi, Moscow)
* Director of Cairo's al-Azhar Islamic university files a complaint about his rival. (Jamshid Chalangi, Cairo)
* Abu Nidhal's former deputy said Abu Nidhal was responsible for the 1988 bombing of the Pan Am jetliner over Lockerbie that killed 278. (Farideh Rahbar, Cairo)
* EU approves new regulations to send home more than 1.2 million illegal immigrants. (Shahram Mirian, Cologne)
در پي تهديد آمريكا براي اقدام نظامي عليه حكومت صدام حسين، و براساس گزارش هاي رسيده از سوي منابع كرد، نبروهاي يگان ويژه سپاه پاسداران و ديگر نيروهاي نظامي جمهوري اسلامي به مرزهاي غربي اعزام شدند. هليكوپترهاي ارتش جمهوري اسلامي به بهانه تعقيب قاچاقچيان مواد مخدر به گشت در مناطق مرزي پرداختند. از سوي ديگر گزارش هاي رسيده حاكي از تمركز نيروهاي ارتش تركيه در مناطق مرزي عراق است.