• 2020-09-03

    A prize-winning Iranian lawyer is over three weeks into a hunger strike to draw attention to the plight of political prisoners in the country during the Covid-19 pandemic, as international concern grows over the state of her health. Nasrin Sotoudeh, co-laureate of the European Parliament's prestigious Sakharov prize in 2012, is serving a 12-year sentence in Tehran's Evin prison, imposed last year, after she defended women arrested for protesting compulsory headscarf laws.

  • 2020-09-02

    […] Scholars have also discussed and critiqued modern prisons in Iran at length, from Ervand Abrahamian to Darius Rejali and recently Nasser Mohajer. Recently, Middle East activists and writers concerned with peoples incarcerated during the COVID-19 pandemic have added their voices to the global call for abolition. This roundtable adds to these efforts, asking does US-based research and activism organized around abolitionism provide insight into the condition of imprisoned Iranians in the Islamic Republic and abroad? Can and should the call to abolition prisons be a global one? Do these disparate settings need movements and languages attentive to their specificity?  We asked three scholar-activists of Iran and Iranians whose work concerns prisons and abolition transnationally to address these questions in conversation: Australian philosopher, translator, and community advocate Omid Tofighian and Jadaliyya Iran Page co-editors Golnar Nikpour and Naveed Mansoori. Their responses appear as a two-part roundtable.

  • 2020-08-22

    Sternfeld offers a number of illuminating examples to prove that history is not black or white and that there is a disparity between the widespread, often simplistic, narrative and the complex reality. […] “It’s not a simple matter to be a Jew in Iran, and it would be naive to say otherwise, but it’s not simple to be an Iranian these days at all. There is some sort of assumption that if we portray complexity, we are acting as defense counsel for the Iranian regime and dismissing the suffering it is causing. My view is that when we present a complex picture, the criticism is far more focused and accurate. It is impossible to claim, as no few charlatans do, that Iran treats Jews the way Germany did in the 1930s, and as such presents an existential threat to Iran’s Jews and to Israel. There is plenty to be critical of in regard to the Iranian regime: about its attitude toward minorities, toward groups for political, religious or gender reasons. I don’t wish to dictate a different narrative, but to request a broad range of analyses and approaches to Jewish life and history in Iran.”

  • 2020-08-22

    A group of diplomats and foreign relations experts from the Islamic Republic of Iran and Pakistan, stressing the use of capacities of regional economic organizations to strengthen bilateral and multilateral relations said cooperation between Iran's Chabahar and Pakistan’s Gwadar ports would enhance ties between the two states.

  • 2020-08-19

    Despite the initial uproar against the China accord from a rather pro-western elite and population, a consensus seems to be emerging in Tehran, politically as well as within a frustrated private sector, that it is time to go East. 

  • 2020-08-18

    Authors of articles published by Imam Hussein University of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps see the real challenges the regime is facing from the unprivileged slumdwellers and the politicized middle class and its grievances.

  • 2020-08-14

    The Islamic Republic of Iran is facing one of the most difficult periods in its history. Recurring protests, labor strikes, and other forms of civil unrest have become common, drawing in Iranians from all classes, ethnic backgrounds, and regions of the country. Protesters decry the country’s faltering economy and systemic corruption while turning a deaf ear to the regime’s incessant blaming of all things wrong in Iran on U.S. sanctions. Many Iranians, in fact, see the regime, more than just the sanctions, as the primary cause of the country’s poor economic and social conditions.

  • 2020-08-14

    If there is an ongoing US-Iran backchannel, it may be similar to the one Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama conducted via Oman late in the term of former hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Those talks laid the groundwork for rapid diplomatic progress after Rouhani was inaugurated in 2013. Trump has said four times in the past week that he could reach a deal with Iran weeks after winning reelection. He could be hoping for similar results

  • 2020-08-11

    No matter what administration is to come next, the Iranian political system and Ayatollah Khamenei will adamantly pursue the 25-year deal in order to more fully implement the CSP first signed in 2016. The hope will be that an economic uplift from China’s renewed commitment to Iran will win the hearts and minds of a wary public.

  • 2020-08-08

    In identical letters to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the UN Security Council circulated on Friday, Iran’s UN Ambassador Majid Takht Ravanchi said Tehran “expresses its strongest objections against this violation of international law and will pursue the issue through relevant international bodies.”.” The Iranian envoy said a Mahan Airlines Airbus A310 en route from Tehran to Beirut on July 23 “was aggressively and unexpectedly intercepted” by two US F-15 fighter jets while traveling through internationally specified air corridors in Syria’s airspace, the Associated Press reported. “In reaction to the offensive and hazardous maneuverings of the United States fighter jets and in order to save the civil aircraft and passengers’ lives, the airliner had to change altitude abruptly, causing injuries to the passengers onboard,” the ambassador said.