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Summary of Iran Stories in Today's BroadcastsBehnam NateghiWednesday, July 16, 2003 <b>Death in Police Custody of Canadian-Iran Photojournalist</b> • The death in police custody of Canadian photojournalist Zahra Kazemi helped focus world attention on the violation of human rights in Iran, says former Majles MP and Tehran University political science professor <b>Qasem Shoaleh Saadi</b>, who was jailed for writing a letter criticizing the Supreme Leader. He tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that the victim's Canadian citizenship involved a foreign government in her case. He says his own and other prisoners' experience proves that beating and torture of detainees, particularly during interrogation. He adds that the bill Majles approved to ban physical punishment of prisoners as a form of torture, but the Guardians Council rejected it. (Bijan Farhoodi) • The Islamic government's Paris ambassador Sadeq Kharrazi representatives of the Reporters Sans Frontiers that Zahra Kazemi has been buried in Iran, contradicting claims by Iran's ambassador to Canada who had said the body would be made available for autopsy, a RSF spokesman said. (Ebrahim Biparva) • Paris-based human lawyer and human rights <b>Abdolkarim Lahiji</b>, who has been retained as a legal advisor by Stephan Hashemi, son of Zahra Kazemi, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that plainclothes security personnel under Tehran prosecutor Said Mortazavi arrested Zahra Kazemi, and the arrest has been confirmed by the regime's “Islamic human rights commission.” Tehran judiciary's interrogators held her for four days, before transferring her to the intelligence ministry. Kazemi was taken to hospital in a coma on the day of the transfer or a day later, he adds. He adds that it is clear Kazemi had been tortured several times during interrogation. He said an international crime has been committed under prosecutor Said Mortazavi. (Nazi Azima) • Vice president for legal and legislative affairs Mohammad-Ali Abtahi said today that Zahra Kazemi died of brain hemorrhage due to skull fracture caused by beating in jail. Health minister Dr. Masoud Pezeshkian confirmed today that Kazemi died of brain hemorrhage, but rejected Kazemi's Canadian son Stephan Hashemi's offer to send an international team to examine the body in order to pinpoint the cause of death. (Golnaz Esfandiari) • Deputy chair of the Majles culture committee Valiollah Shojapour said the Majles will review the circumstances of Kazemi's death in a meeting next Sunday with culture minister. He added that Khatami's decision to form a committee to investigate Kazemi's death is laudable, but was too late. (Fariba Mavedat) • The Amnesty International called for an independent investigation of Kazemi's death, and said in a statement that Iran should join the UN treaty to ban all forms of torture. (Fariba Mavedat) • Canada's ambassador to Iran Philip MacKinnon said on Tuesday that he did not believe Kazemi's body had been buried. He said he reached the conclusion after meetings with the country's deputy foreign affairs minister and its director general of consular affairs. He said factional conflict would make investigation of Kazemi's death more difficult. Canada's foreign affairs minister Bill Graham will speak today (Wednesday) with foreign minister Kharrazi. (Shireen Famili) <b>Britain's Change of Heart on Iran</b> • Ariel Sharon, the Israeli Prime Minister, found that Tony Blair has had a complete change of heart about Iran's nuclear program, and now agrees with him that it is a serious threat to regional security, writes London's daily <i>The Times.</i> (Shahran Tabari) <b>Iran Denies Seeking Direct Talks with the US about Nuclear Program</b> • Iran will never hold talks with the United States unless a tangible shift in Washington's behavior toward Iran is observed, a foreign ministry official said on Wednesday. He rejected yesterday's <i>Financial Times</i> report that said the US rebuffed Iran's offer to hold direct talks about its nuclear program. (Bijan Farhoodi) <b>Iran Cancels Visit of Germany's Commissioner of Human Rights</b> • Sepidan MP Gholamhossein Barzegar, member of the Majles national security and foreign relations committee, said the foreign affairs ministry cancelled the visit to Iran by German MP and human rights commissioner Claudia Roth, due to the “instable” German foreign policy towards Iran, which is, according to him, under the US influence. Iranian-born <b>Ali Mahjubi</b>, chief of staff of German MP Claudia Roth, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that Germany has maintained dialogue with Iran on a wide range of issues, instead of focusing only on Iran's nuclear program. He adds that Ms. Roth regrets the cancellation of her visit, and believes that the Islamic regime passed on a valuable opportunity for dialogue on a wide range of foreign policy issues. (Parviz Mardani, Berlin) <b>Iranian Writers Association Condemns Detention of Iraj Jamshidi and Other Journalists</b> • In a statement issued in Tehran, the Iranian Writers Association called for an end to the wave of arrests and detentions of writers and journalists, including that of veteran editor Iraj Jamshidi. (Arash Qavidel, Tehran) <b> “Lawyers without Borders” to Visit Prisoners in Iran</b> • A delegation from the Canadian chapter of the international human rights advocacy group Lawyers without Borders will visit Iran to conduct interviews with political prisoners and their families. Toronto-based lawyer <b>Hamid Mojtahedi</b>, who will travel to Iran next week as a member of the delegation, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that the group will visit relatives of some of the students arrested in the aftermath of last month's pro-democracy demonstrations. He adds the trip, the group's second since last year, has been authorized by the Islamic regime, but the group does not expect much cooperation from the authorities. (Maryam Aqvami, Toronto) <b>Calls for Khatami's Resignation</b> • Dissident cleric Mohsen Kadivar, head of the Iranian society for defense of press freedoms, called on Wednesday for President Khatami's resignation. Kadivar, who had been jailed for five years after he criticized the Supreme Leader's “royal” powers, said on Wednesday that the outcome of Khatami-ordered investigation of Zahra Kazemi's death in police custody would have little impact on easing the current pressures on journalists. He said Khatami's resignation would be his greatest service yet, and would show that Khatami has not been an accomplice in the crimes committed by other officials. (Mina Baharmast) • Members of the Islamic student council of the Isfahan University's medical school asked President Khatami to resign in an open letter. They accused the Islamic government of deep and widespread corruption and nepotism, and said thought and opinion leaders grasp any opportunity to leave the country, since in this country they are only allowed to think within a backward framework. They asked Khatami to wake up and see the suffering caused by widespread arrests and detentions of students and political activist. (Baktash Khamsehpour) <b>Activists Shoaleh-Saadi and Sazegara to Form New “Liberal Democrat” Party</b> • Former Majles MP, lawyer and Tehran University's political science professor <b>Qasem Shoaleh-Saadi</b>, tells <b>Radio Farda</b> that in a press conference next week he will announce the formation of a new “liberal democrat” party called “Iranian Republicans (Jomhuri-khahan-e Iran).” He says jailed dissident Mohsen Sazegara is another founding member. (Bijan Farhoodi) <b>Iran-Italy Trade Talks Derailed by Human Rights</b> • A delegation arrived in Rome to hold talks with Italian government and industry leaders in the sixth session of Italy-Iran economic commission. However, deputy chair of Italian parliament's foreign relations committee Carlo Rivolta regretted that the UN Human Rights Commission postponed the visit to Iran of a delegation to investigate charges of human rights abuse. In 2002, Italy, Iran's biggest European trading partner, exported 1.796 billion euros worth of goods and services to Iran, and imported 1.870 billion from Iran, mostly oil. (Ahmad Ra'fat, Rome) <b>Russia-Iran to Sign Treaty on Return of Spent Nuclear Fuel to Russia</b> • Russian atomic energy minister Alexander Rumyantsev said Wednesday that an agreement with Tehran that would allow shipment of uranium to an Iranian nuclear power plant could be signed by the end of July. Rumyantsev said that ecological experts have completed their examination of the agreement about the return of spent nuclear fuel to Russia from the Bushehr nuclear power plant, removing the last barrier to the delivery of nuclear fuel to Iran. The Bushehr plant is scheduled to begin operations by 2005. (Ebrahim Biparva) <b>Deputy Oil Minister in Moscow</b> • Deputy Oil Minister Hadi Nejad-Hosseinian and Russian deputy oil minister Alexander Varvnin chaired the first session of Iran-Russia oil and gas commission on Wednesday to discuss cooperation on technical issues and stability in international oil and gas markets. (Jamshid Zand) <b>Prospect of Signing the Additional Protocol of the Nuclear Treaty</b> • Iran has a positive view about signing the additional protocol of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, but agreement with the UN International Atomic Energy Agency (AIEA) needs to be transparent, according to deputy foreign minister for legal affairs Gholamali Khoshrou, in Moscow for an official visit. Head of the Majles national security and foreign relations committee Mohsen Mirdamadi said Iran will not sign the additional protocol unconditionally, but if conditions were right, the agreement could be signed next year, he added, in an interview with the German daily <i>Die Welt</i>. (Jamshid Zand and Shahram Mirian) <b>Conservatives Hold on the Chamber of Commerce, Despite Election Loss</b> • Conservative politician and bazaar merchant Alinaqi Khamoushi refused to give up his 24-year reign over the Tehran chamber of commerce, industry and mines, even after losing to a reformist coalition in last month's election. (Fereydoun Khavand, Paris) . بيژن فرهودي (راديو فردا): در تهران، قاسم شعله سعدي وکيل دادگستري ضمن ابراز تاسف از واقعه مرگ خانم کاظمي اظهارداشت که اين مسئله توجه جهانيان را به وضعيت نقض حقوق بشر در ايران جلب کرده است. قاسم شعله سعدي ( وکيل دادگستري، تهران): گويا آقاي معاون پارلماني و حقوقي رئيس جمهور هم اعلام کرده که خانم کاظمي ضربه مغزي شده که در اثر خونريزي مغزي، سکته مغزي، و ضربه وارد شده بر سر ايشان بوده است. آدم تاسف مي خورد که چرا مثلا يک طرحي را که مجلس براي منع شکنجه تصويب کرده بود با وتوي شوراي نگهبان روبرو شد و اين يک امر روزمره اي شده و خيلي از زندانيان و از جمله خود من در زماني که زندان بودم، مورد اين گونه برخوردها قرار گرفتم و حالا اين دفعه چون کسي موضوع اين قضيه قرار گرفته است که علاو بر تابعيت ايران، تابعيت يک کشور خارجي را هم دارد و خبرنگار هم هست به هر حال اين قضيه يک مقدار ابعاد گسترده اي پيدا کرده. به علاوه، اين يک امر کاملا متداولي است و واقعيتي است که يک بار ديگر که توجه جهانيان را به سوي آنچه که در ايران مي گذرد جلب کرده و حکومت را دچار يک مخمصه اساسي کرده است. هم مردم در داخل نسبت به اين برخوردها اعتراض دارند و هم همانطور که شما مي دانيد در صحنه جهاني فشار عليه ايران چقدر افزايش يافته است. قاسم شعله سعدي، وکيل دادگستري و منتقد سياست هاي رهبر جمهوري اسلامي، در مصاحبه با راديوفردا مي گويد مرگ زهرا کاظمي، عكاس ايراني-كانادائي در بازجوئي، توجه جهانيان را به وضعيت نقض حقوق بشر در ايران جلب کرد. وي مي افزايد که جاي تاسف است که طرحي را که مجلس براي منع شکنجه تصويب کرده بود با وتوي شوراي نگهبان روبرو شد و ضرب و شتم در بازجوئي روزمره شده و خيلي از زندانيان و از جمله خود وي در زندان مورد ضرب و شتم قرار گرفت. وي مي گويد چون موضوع برخورد خشونت آميز مشرف به موت، يك خبرنگار ايراني با تابعيت كانادائي است، قضيه ابعاد گسترده اي پيدا کرده است.