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- Local Information > Middle East > Iran
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- Local Information > Middle East > Iran > 2003
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- Iran - Culture and Religion (LonelyPlanet.com)
Provides a short description of the culture and Muslim religion of Iran. 9-01
- Islamic Reformation and the Trial of Hashem Aghajari (Iranian.com - The New York Times - Friedman)
"What's going on in Iran today is, without question, the most promising trend in the Muslim world. It is a combination of Martin Luther and Tiananmen Square - a drive for an Islamic reformation combined with a spontaneous student-led democracy movement."
Hashem Aghajari has been sentenced to death for calling for reformation in Iran. "Watch this story. It's the most important trial in the world today.""This movement faces a formidable opponent in Iran's conservative clerical leadership. It can't provide a quick fix to what ails relations between Islam and the West today. There is none. But it is still hugely important, because it reflects a deepening understanding by many Iranian Muslims that to thrive in the modern era they, and other Muslims, need an Islam different from the lifeless, anti-modern, anti-Western fundamentalism being imposed in Iran and propagated by the Saudi Wahhabi clerics. This understanding is the necessary condition for preventing the brewing crisis between Islam and the West -- which was triggered by 9/11 -- from turning into a war of civilizations." 12-02
- 10-10-03 Iranian Woman Wins Nobel Peace Prize (CNN News)
"Iranian activist Shirin Ebadi has won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize for her focus on human rights, especially on the struggle to improve the status of women and children." 10-03
- 12-31-03 Bush Advisors See Syria, Iran, and North Korea as Next Targets (SMH.com.au - Rennie)
"Washington's hawks have sent a public manifesto to President George Bush demanding regime change in Syria and Iran and a Cuba-style military blockade of North Korea backed by planning for a pre-emptive strike on its nuclear sites." 12-03
- 09-01-04 Iran Steps Up Nuclear Program (CBS News)
"Iran has announced it plans to turn tons of uranium into the substance used to make enriched uranium, the U.N. atomic watchdog agency said Wednesday in a report stoking concern about Tehran's nuclear agenda." 8-04
- 11-14-04 UN: No Proof Iran Intended to Make Nuclear Bombs (CNN News)
"The U.N. nuclear watchdog says it has found that none of Iran's declared nuclear material has been diverted for military purposes."
"However, a spokesman for the International Atomic Energy Agency told CNN on Monday that officials still had questions about possible undeclared activities." 11-04
- -01-16-05 Pentagon May Be Planning a "Hit" on Iran (CNN News)
"The Pentagon Monday criticized an article by investigative journalist Seymour Hersh that says the United States has been carrying out reconnaissance missions in Iran to identify nuclear, chemical and missile sites for possible airstrikes as soon as this summer."
"[Former Secretary of Defense William] Cohen noted that Hersh's article has not been 'categorically denied' by the Bush administration."
" 'So there seems to be some confirmation that there is a fairly serious effort under way to gather this kind of information for potential military operations,' he said."1-05
- -01-20-05 Iran Responds to Talk of U.S. Attack (CBS News)
"Iran has plans to defend itself should the United States make any aggressive moves, President Mohammad Khatami said Thursday, but he added that the possibility of an attack 'is very low' because Washington has too many problems in Iraq." 1-05
- -02-18-05 Iran Talks May Fail Without USA (Bloomberg.com)
"Germany, France and the U.K. may fail to dissuade Iran from seeking nuclear weapons unless the U.S. joins European-led talks with Iran's Islamic government, Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's adviser on U.S. relations said."
"The U.S. must back Europe's attempt to resolve the dispute over Iran's nuclear program through diplomacy 'because only then will we manage to create an environment for these efforts to succeed,' said Karsten Voigt in a telephone interview from New York, where he is meeting with U.S. officials in preparation for a visit to Europe by President George W. Bush next week." 2-05
- -05-21-05 Iraq and Iran Blame Saddam for 1980 and 1990 Wars (CNN News)
"Iraq and Iran have issued a joint statement blaming Saddam Hussein and his henchmen for being the aggressors in the 1980-88 war between the two countries and Iraqís 1990 invasion of Kuwait." 5-05
- -06-17-05 Iranians Electing New President (CNN News)
"Surveys show former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani is likely headed toward a runoff against either a reformist candidate or a conservative allied with the country's powerful Shiite hierarchy."
"Seven candidates are vying to succeed President Mohammed Khatami, a reform-minded cleric barred from seeking a third term."
"Although Khatami was elected by landslides in 1997 and 2001, many of his initiatives were blocked by clerical hard-liners who hold vast power under Iran's Islamic system of government."
"With high unemployment and a sense of deep social dissatisfaction -- particularly among young people and women -- even conservative candidates talked the language of democracy and reform during the campaign. 6-05
- -06-25-05 Rumsfeld Slams Iran's Elections (CNN News)
"Speaking on 'Fox News Sunday,' Rumsfeld said the Iranian government had paved the way for ultra-conservative Tehran mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to win the post."
"The Iranian president does not run the country, supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khameinei has the final word in matters of state in the Islamic theocracy. But the United States and others hoped the victor in the election would be someone they deemed more committed to democratic reforms." 6-05
- Iran Ultra-Conservative Becomes President (BBC News)
"Iran's new ultra-conservative President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been confirmed in office, following his surprise election victory in July." 8-05
- -08-11-05 Iran Vows to Export Nuclear Fuel (Bloomberg.com)
"Iran rejected a resolution from the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency urging it to freeze a uranium processing program, and vowed to become a nuclear fuel exporter within the next decade." 8-05
- -08-13-05 Germany Warns U.S. on Use of Force in Iran (BBC News)
"German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has warned the US to back away from the possibility of military action against Iran over its nuclear programme." 8-05
- 08-13-05 Bush Raises Possibility of Military Action Against Iran (BBC News)
"President George W. Bush yesterday raised the possibility of a U.S. military response to Iran's decision to restart its nuclear energy program."
" 'We've used force in the recent past to secure our country,' Bush added, when asked to elaborate."
"Western countries including the U.S., France and Germany, say they are worried the Islamic state will secretly develop nuclear weapons. Iran is the second-largest oil producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries." 8-05
- -09-17-05 Iranian President Pledges Transparency for Nuclear (Bloomberg.com)
"Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said his government would initiate a new ``partnership'' with companies and other nations to create confidence that its nuclear program won't lead to development of atomic weapons."
"Ahmadinejad, who called the announcement a 'far-reaching step' to inspire confidence in his nation's peaceful intentions, also said Iran would continue talks with the U.K., France and Germany on the issue. He called on the UN General Assembly to establish a committee to study ways to achieve total nuclear weapons disarmament, while saying Iran would cooperate with the world body's Vienna-based nuclear watchdog agency."
"At the same time, Ahmadinejad said Iran would continue a program of nuclear enrichment for peaceful energy production." 9-05
- -11-26-05 Iranian President Accuses President Bush of War Crimes (Fox News)
" Iran's hard-line president said Saturday the Bush administration should be tried on war crimes charges, and he denounced the West for pressuring Iran to curb its controversial nuclear program."
"Ahmadinejad did not elaborate, but he apparently was referring to the U.S. military's reported use of artillery shells packed with depleted uranium, which is far less radioactive than natural uranium and is left over from the process of enriching uranium for use as nuclear fuel."
"Since the Iraq war started in 2003, American forces have fired at least 120 tons of shells packed with depleted uranium, an extremely dense material used by the U.S. and British militaries to penetrate tank armor. Once fired, the shells melt, vaporize and turn to dust." 11-05
- -11-29-05 Iran May Drop Voluntary Compliance With I.A.E.A. Nuclear Requirements (WorldPress.org)
"On Nov. 20, four days before the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agencyís 35-member board began its three-day November meeting, the Majlis (Iranís parliament) adopted a resolution requiring the government to cancel all its voluntary measures of cooperation with the I.A.E.A. if Iran is referred by the board to the U.N. Security Council for 'action.' "
"The Western corporate media presented the Majlis decision as a threat by Tehran to block U.N. inspections of Iranís nuclear facilities. However, Majlis member Kazem Jalali told Associated Press that the resolution required the government to only comply with its legal obligations under the 1970 international nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (N.P.T.) and Iranís safeguards agreement with the I.A.E.A., signed in 1974."
"More than a year ago, I.A.E.A. director general Mohammed ElBaradei reported to the I.A.E.A. board that 'all the declared nuclear material in Iran has been accounted for, and therefore such material is not diverted to prohibited activities,' i.e., to the development of nuclear weapons." 11-05
- Ahmadinejad, Mahmoud - President of Iran (ABC News)
"Until a few months ago, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the mayor of Tehran. This son of a blacksmith was elected president of the country by promising to give poor people a share of Iran's oil wealth."
"From his first days in office, he began to express a fervent belief in the Shiite prophecy that the 12th imam, or the messiah, would return to save the believers and kill the infidels. What really got many people's attention was that the new president said it would happen in the next two years." 01-06