Sunday, July 18, 2004

English Radio: Ex-US President Clinton Warns Bush

English Radio: "Ex-US President Clinton Warns Bush
Former US President, Bill Clinton has warned that US interference in Australian politics could backfire following its criticism over the labor opposition's vow to recall Australian troops from Iraq. Clinton said he hoped if labor wins the upcoming election, Australia would not withdraw its troops from Iraq. But he acknowledged Australians did not want to be told how to vote by outsiders. Clinton said, 'If I were in ... the Bush position, I think it would be okay to say I hope that after this election, whoever wins, the Australians will continue to support the reconstruction of Iraq because now it's been blessed by the UN.' "

English Radio: US Assistant Secretary of State Visits Kyrgyzstan

English Radio: "US Assistant Secretary of State Visits Kyrgyzstan
US Assistant Secretary of State, Richard Armitage, who is touring the Central Asian region heading a high ranking delegation, arrived in the Kyrgyz capital, Bishkek on Saturday July 17 on the last leg of his trip. The objectives behind this trip is said to be surveying the current situation and the panorama of political, economic, military and security developments between Kyrgyzstan and the US. Visiting the Menas military air base where US troops are based within the framework of international coalition for the so-called campaign against terrorism and holding talks with Kyrgyz president and foreign minister are cited as other objectives of Armitage�s visit to this central Asian Republic"

Iran topsG-15 states in GDP growth

Iran topsG-15 states in GDP growth: "Iran topsG-15 states in GDP growth

Tehran, July 18, IRNA -- The president of Iran`s Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Mines (ICCIM), Ali-Naqi Khamoushi, said here Sunday that the country enjoys the highest rate of growth of GDP among G15 member states. Addressing the 11th meeting here of the G15`s Federation of Chambers of Commerce for Industries and Services (FCCIS), Khamoushi said that Iran`s gross domestic product (GDP), which is expected to grow by 7.6 percent this year, is the highest among the 19 member states of the G-15.

The G-15, comprising 19 developing countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America, was set up in 1989 to foster cooperation and provide input for other international groups such as the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the G-8 industrialized states. Referring to the key role of G-15 member states in the global economy, Khamoushi said that some 8.151 trillion dollars of the world`s dlr 49 trillion GDP is accounted for by G-15 members. He further pointed to the rich natural resources of G-15 states and their potential in various fields, and expressed hope all factors in their favor would lead to a better situation for all G-15 member states.

The ongoing two-day meeting is expected to end its work on Monday. " - News - Iran, Al-Qaida Not Connected, CIA Says - News - Iran, Al-Qaida Not Connected, CIA Says: "Iran, Al-Qaida Not Connected, CIA Says
McLaughlin: Bin Laden's Time Will Come
POSTED: 11:58 am EDT July 18, 2004
WASHINGTON -- The CIA sees no link between Iran and al-Qaida.
The acting head of the U.S. spy agency says reports that many of the Sept. 11 hijackers got passage through Iran are not surprising. But in an interview on 'FoxNews Sunday,' John McLaughlin said there's 'no evidence that there's some sort of official connection' between Tehran and the terrorist network behind the attacks.
McLaughlin also disputed critics who say the United States has given up the hunt for al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.
He said it's difficult to catch a single individual. McLaughlin noted it took four years to catch Aimal Kahn Kasi -- who killed two CIA employees in front of the agency's headquarters in 1993 -- and that it took seven years to catch Sept. 11 architect Kahlid Sheik Mohammed.
McLaughlin added, 'Bin Laden's time will come.' "

Iran claims al-Qaida is out of the country - (United Press International)

Iran claims al-Qaida is out of the country - (United Press International): "Iran claims al-Qaida is out of the country

Teheran, Iran, Jul. 17 (UPI) -- Iran said Saturday it has located and dismantled all branches of the al-Qaida network in the country.
Intelligence minister Ali Yunesi said his ministry had stopped al-Qaeda's terrorist acts, the BBC reported.
Iran has previously denied allegations that it gave sanctuary to al-Qaida fugitives who escaped the U.S.-led invasion of neighboring Afghanistan. In January, Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi announced that 12 suspected al-Qaida members being held in Iran would go on trial, but he did not say when. Among those possibly in Iranian detention are al-Qaida spokesman Sulaiman Abu Ghaith and Osama Bin Laden's son, Saad Bin Laden, Saudi sources reported. Osama Bin Laden's security chief Saif al-Adel, sometimes regarded as al-Qaida's current number three leader and alleged to have trained some of the September 11, 2001, hijackers, is also believed to be in the country."

Iran To Sue Satellite Channels For Copyright Violation

Description of Selected News: "Iran To Sue Satellite Channels For Copyright Violation

Tehran Times Art Desk
TEHRAN (MNA) -– A spokesman for the Iranian Trade Union of Film Producers and Distributors said on Saturday that the union will bring a lawsuit against satellite channels that broadcast Iranian films illegally. “Mushrooming Persian-speaking satellite channels broadcast Iranian films produced in Iran without consideration for their producers,” said Gholamreza Musavi, adding, “The trade union will file a lawsuit against satellite channels that broadcast Iranian films without formal permission from owners of the films.”

Although Iran has not joined the Universal Copyright Convention, the copyright of the foreign and domestic films and books is respected in Iran. Iranian cultural figures including artists and writers unanimously believe that joining the convention will be internationally beneficial for Iran. “Under these conditions the copyright of the films will be sought by third countries who are members of the Universal Copyright Convention,” Musavi said. “A department has been established by Iranian judicial authorities to proceed against violators,” he added. At the present time, 22 Persian-speaking satellite channels are available globally.

Giant Mushroom Found In East Azerbaijan

Description of Selected News: "Mushroom Weighing 6.5kg Found In East Azerbaijan

Tehran Times Agriculture Desk
TAKAB, East Azerbaijan Prov. (MNA) �- An enormous edible mushroom found in the heights of Arabshah village located in the East Azerbaijan Province was sold for Rls 200,000 in market, news reports said Saturday.
Abundance of the precipitations in the grass-covered mountains in the Arabshah region near Takab is said to have contributed to the growth of the mammoth mushroom, the Iranian Students� News Agency (ISNA) reported.
The mushroom weighing 6.5kgs was found by a local rustic in the mid July. Villagers maintain that they have never seen such a huge mushroom grow in the region. However, there have been reports on finding mushroom weighing 5kgs before this."

Majlis To Form Technology Association

Description of Selected News: "Majlis To Form Technology Association

TEHRAN (PIN) The parliamentarians are setting up an Association for Defending Technological Progress, ISNA reported citing an MP.
'This association has its articles and it will sign up members this week,' Esmail Jabbarzadeh, director of the association, said.
He added that the association was not anything new."

Grand Ayatollahs Praise New Majlis

Description of Selected News: "New Majlis Performance Has Been Satisfactory: Top Cleric

Tehran Times Political Desk
TEHRAN (MNA) –- Majlis speaker Gholam-Reza Haddad Adel along with other members of the Majlis Presiding Board visited some Grand Ayatollahs in Qom on Friday.

The visit between the Majlis Deputies and the sources of emulation is a concerted plan since in the Islamic sources of emulation cooperate with officials, the Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA) reported Makarem Shirazi as saying.

Shirazi went on to say that cultural issues are the most pressing societal problem with enemies attempting to thrust their culture upon Iran. He added that Hijab (the Islamic dress code), as the symbol of religiousness is being downplayed by the enemies who believe its devaluation will give rise to declining religious principles enabling the enemies to intensify their dominance.

He noted that so far the performance of the new Majlis has been good; citing cooperation between all ministries and levels of government as exemplary. However, he went on to say that financial pressures are a concern to people and the Majlis should seriously attempt to resolve this problem.

Ayatollah Fazel Lankarani said that the best and firmest laws are those based on Islamic principles that consider the needs of citizens from all walks of life. The Majlis should keep this issue in mind to improve its performance as well as to increase national satisfaction.

He worries about the high cost of living expenses and asked officials to sincerely follow up the issue.

Ayatollah Nuri Hamedani said that people expect their deputies to address their needs, adding the most important national concerns are unemployment and high expenses and the deputies must find solutions to these problems. Hamedani praised the Seventh Majlis MPs’ refusal of all benefits and benefits offered to them as part of their official trappings, hoping that this would be a permanent trend.

The Majlis speaker anticipated that this visit will enhance relations between the Majlis and the sources of emulation, adding the visit reflected the viewpoints of the Seventh Majlis.

Hadad Adel added that the Majlis is aware of the cultural problems, but this issue must be handled delicately because many would interpret resistance against a cultural invasion as a crackdown on personal freedom.

Majlis deputy chairman Hasan Abu Torabi agreed that there are problems in cultural areas. He believes that to counter this problem the sources of emulation must provide guidance, and police forces must take more responsibility in this area.

Khatami IIPP Secretary General Dismisses Resignation Reports

Description of Selected News

"IIPP Secretary General Dismisses Resignation Reports

Tehran Times Political Desk
TEHRAN (MNA) –- Mohammad-Reza Khatami, Secretary General of the Islamic Iran Participation Party (IIPP), on Saturday denied some reports that he plans to resign from his post.

The IIPP seventh session will hold a meeting this weekend to elect the secretary general and there is no talk of resignation, Khatami told the Mehr News Agency on Saturday.

He said these reports are just media speculation.

The younger brother of President Mohammad Khatami argued that there is no bickering within his party.

Previously some sources have said that Khatami wants to resign from party post.

Some in the IIPP believe that as the term of President Khatami is nearing end he should actually reign from the party post.

The IIPP seventh congress will be held in Tehran on July 21-23 to elect the new secretary general and the central council members.

As the most important political party in the country the IIPP held many seats in the previous parliament. The party emerged after President Mohammad Khatami’s landslide victory in 1997."

Haddad Adel Describes Palestine As Important For Iran

Description of Selected News: "Majlis Speaker Describes Palestine As Important For Iran

Tehran Times Political desk
TEHRAN (MNA) -- Majlis Speaker Gholam Ali Haddad Adel here on Saturday described the Palestinian issue as strategic, stressing that the 7th Majlis would endeavor its utmost to support the brave though downtrodden Palestinians.
In a meeting with Palestinian Ambassador to Tehran Salah Zawawi, Haddad Adel said Iran considers Palestine the symbol of struggles of Muslim world against the atrocities of the West.
He added that the Hague ruling on the demolition of the illegal apartheid wall in Palestine was a colossal victory for the Islamic world and the Palestinians.
'The U.S. and the Zionist regime's refusal to accept the (ICJ) ruling indicates their lack of commitment to international laws and their dual standards towards international issues,' he said.
The speaker expressed hope that officials of the Palestinian Authority would not retreat from the legitimate stance of Palestinian people by relying on their sacrifices.
Zawawi, for his part, felicitated Haddad Adel over his appointment as Majlis speaker and hoped the seventh Majlis would go further compared to the previous terms of the Majlis in rendering support to Palestinians.
He also presented a report on the latest developments in Palestine."

Iran Says Sept 11 Plotters May Have Passed Through

Wired News | Iran Says Sept 11 Plotters May Have Passed Through: "Iran Says Sept 11 Plotters May Have Passed Through

TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran acknowledged on Sunday that some al Qaeda members involved in the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States may have passed through the country shortly beforehand.

U.S. government sources have said a bipartisan commission's report this week on the Sept. 11 attacks will mention that some of the hijackers transited through Iran on their way to the United States.

"We have long borders and it is not possible to fully control them," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told a weekly news conference when asked about the commission's report.

"It is normal that five or six people who cross the border illegally over a period of five or six months may evade our attention. The same happens on the border between Mexico and the United States," he added.

Asefi noted that Iran had tightened its border control since the Sept. 11 attacks.

"It happened before Sept. 11 and who knew that Sept. 11 was going to happen?"

Iran denies U.S. accusations that it has collaborated with and harbored al Qaeda members fleeing Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban. The hard-line Islamic movement was overthrown in a U.S.-led war at the end of 2001.

Tehran has arrested and deported hundreds of al Qaeda suspects in the past two years and says it is holding some senior members of Osama bin Laden's network.

On Saturday it announced it had smashed a ring of Iranian al Qaeda supporters.

"Iran has shown it is against terrorists and extremism and is serious about confronting terrorists," Asefi said.

He said news reports tying Iran to al Qaeda were part of a U.S. cover-up to deflect attention away from its failings in Iraq.

"The more we approach the U.S. (presidential) election the more we will witness such news propaganda," he said. "