Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 7 Jan 2000 to 11 Jan 2000

There are 13 messages totalling 1120 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. DNI lists are up and running again
2. RADIO FREE EUROPE-IRAN WEEKLY REPORT-PART 1/2
3. RADIO FREE EUROPE-IRAN WEEKLY REPORT-PART 2/2
4. Iran never stopped attacking
5. Letter to Kofi Anan on behalf of students under death threat
6. Rafsanjani Defends His Family, Career
7. Australian Immigration Minister to Visit Tehran
8. UK Professor Optimistic About Britain-Iran Relations
9. Countdown to final Ballot
10. Customs Law to Be Overhauled
11. France, Iran to Jointly Assemble Peugeot 206
12. Quake Jolts Kazeroun, Fars Province
13. MOHAJERANI: People's Resistance Should Be Reflected in Artistic Creations

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 11:46:23 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: DNI lists are up and running again

salAm doostan,
We have had some problem with our account and our list server was down
during the past few days, the problem is now solved and I believe that it
works again, I am just testing it to verify that everything is in good shape.

Unfortunately, I could not uppdate our software, so I have to work on it
this weekend and hopefully it will solve all our problems plus some extra
needed functionality that we need to make (my life) easier :)

bA ehterAm,
Farhad A.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 11:53:15 -0500
From: "by way of Farhad Abdolian <farhad@algonet.se>" <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: RADIO FREE EUROPE-IRAN WEEKLY REPORT-PART 1/2

RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
_____________________________________________________________
RFE/RL IRAN REPORT
Vol. 3, No. 2, 10 January 1999

A Review of Developments in Iran Prepared by the Regional
Specialists of RFE/RL's Newsline Team.

******************************************************
HEADLINES
* PROTESTS NEAR TEHRAN AND IN SOUTHWEST
* SHOOTINGS IN TABRIZ?
* ETHNIC PROBLEMS RESURFACE AMONG TURKMEN AND KURDS
* KHATAMI UNDERMINES HIMSELF
* ANTI-CORRUPTION CAMPAIGN ANNOUNCED
* BENEFICIARY OF CHECHNYA WAR
* COMPETITION AMONG SOUTH AMERICAN HIZBALLAH
******************************************************

PROTESTS NEAR TEHRAN AND IN SOUTHWEST.
On 3 and 4 January, residents of Islamshahr, a suburb
southwest of Tehran, staged demonstrations that turned
violent. The demonstrators blocked the Tehran-Saveh highway,
according to IRNA, then "thugs and hooligans" damaged a local
health center and some bus kiosks. A few days later, a mob in
the southwestern city of Ramhormoz attacked a police station
and government offices, the 6 January "Kayhan" reported.
Most of the residents of Islamshahr are poor migrants
from rural areas, while those who live near Ramhormoz mainly
work in the oil sector. They are not university students or
multilingual intellectuals. Their protests have nothing to do
with press freedom, elections, or relations with the U.S.
Their protests focus on basic human needs, such as clean
water and jobs. And for all these reasons, they draw
relatively little attention in the rest of Iran and the West.
The Ramhormoz incident started as a protest about a
redistricting plan. The unrest escalated over local concern
about the parliament's plan to close a local oil facility and
possible job losses. Reports about the Islamshahr incident
also state that the protest was about a redistricting plan.
But Islamshahr Governor Buyk Musavi told IRNA that central
authorities consistently ignore locals' demands for improved
public services, such as telephones and fuel supplies. This
is not the first time violent protests occurred in Islamshahr
over social services.
In April 1995, what started as a demonstration for
better water supplies turned violent when people voiced their
anger about economic hardships. Shops and offices were closed
and demonstrators set fire to public buildings, government
vehicles, and a gas station. Security forces killed and
wounded demonstrators. In June 1992, there were protests when
demolition teams tore down 220 illegally-built houses and
shops as part of a clamp-down on unlawful buildings.
Lack of social services is not the only factor
contributing to Islamshahr's tensions and its citizens'
disaffection. Just as in the case of Ramhormoz, unemployment
and job concerns greatly affect local attitudes. In July
1995, the Islamic Revolution Guards Corp suppressed a three-
day strike at the Khavar auto plant in Islamabad when workers
protested for wage increases. A 20-ish fellow explained the
current situation in the 16 July 1999 issue of "The New York
Times." "We're all jobless. We have nothing to do. We try to
do a little bit of business here and there and they arrest us
as hooligans. That's why there are so many drug addicts here.
It's the despair." What jobs are available generally go to
Afghan refugees, who work longer hours for less money.
Islamshahr Governor Musavi told "The New York Times"
that his town does not have an unemployment problem, and he
added that the locals are very satisfied. This may be because
he is unwilling to express criticism in front of foreigners,
because in April 1999 he told a meeting of the Provincial
City Administrative Council that the improvement of public
services and linking Islamshahr with Tehran were outstanding
problems.
An Islamshahr veteran of the Iran-Iraq War told "The New
York Times": "I fought 40 months in the war against Iraq.
When I came back the regime abandoned me. ...The youth are
becoming drug addicts. We have no freedom, no jobs, nowhere
to go and have fun. So we are all addicts. We are all
addicts."
The incidents in Ramhormoz and Islamshahr may not
attract much media interest. For most of the Western media,
unemployment and poor social services are not very sexy. In
Iran's heavily politicized climate, where most newspapers
serve as factional mouthpieces, unemployment is being
emphasized by the hardliners as a failure of President
Mohammad Khatami's administration, and local problems are
emphasized as a failure of the municipal councils and the
Khatami-controlled Interior Ministry. In December, in fact,
the Interior Ministry banned demonstrations by unemployed
people in several cities, IRNA reported. For these very
reasons reformists probably will ignore the issue, too.
For the average Iranian, however, unemployment, a low
standard of living, and a weak economy are extremely
relevant. And these are further indicators of the
revolution's failure to fulfill its promises. (Bill Samii)


SHOOTINGS IN TABRIZ?
In response to reports that a Tabriz rally had been
suppressed violently by Islamic Revolutionary Guards, Mehdi
Sobhani, an official at the Iranian embassy in Baku, told an
Azerbaijani television station on 7 January: "Such lies have
been repeatedly disseminated in Azerbaijan and it has been
proved that they were lies. The people disseminating such
reports are playing on the Azerbaijani people's emotions. And
people who consider the Azerbaijani people to be so naive and
disseminate such false reports, these people are not so much
acting against Iran as they are insulting the Azerbaijani
nation."
Piruz Dilenchi, head of the National Liberation Movement
of Southern Azerbaijan, had told ANS television earlier that
7,000 thousand ethnic Azeris had gathered at Gyrkhmetri and
Davachi districts of Tabriz to stage a rally for their
national rights, at which point shooting started. Dilenchi
also said the rally was in support of Iranian-Azeri
nationalist Mahmoud Ali Chehragani (Johragani), who
supposedly is being denied necessary medical attention
because he wanted to run in the sixth parliamentary
elections. Dilenchi added later that about 200 people were
arrested and another 50 people were wounded, Baku's Space TV
reported on 8 January. There also are reports that mass
arrests have been occurring in Tabriz since 11 December,
"Azadlyg" daily reported on 6 January. Among those supposedly
arrested are student leader Gholamreza Amani and the famous
singer Jabrayil. Those arrested are subject to torture, and
Jabrayil's instrument was allegedly broken.
Sources in Tabriz told RFE/RL's Persian Service that
some of Chehragani's supporters were detained by the police
on 5 or 6 January. But nobody could confirm the claims of
shootings or mass arrests.
Another Baku-based separatist organization, the United
Azerbaijan Movement, accused employees of the UN's Baku
office of cooperating with the Iranian authorities and
demanded greater attention to the plight of Azeris in Iran,
Baku's Turan news agency reported on 7 January. The next day,
the UAM went further. It said: "We demand that until this
issue [of Chehragani] is cleared up, the authorities first of
all should break off all diplomatic relations, stop the
transportation of oil and annul oil agreements," Baku's "525
Gazet" reported. The [pro-government Azerbaijani] Motherland
Party's central committee condemned Chehragani's situation,
too, Baku's "Mukhalifat" newspaper reported on 8 January.
Chehragani allegedly had sent a fax requesting medical
assistance to Azerbaijani President Heidar Aliev, "525 Gazet"
reported on 6 January. But Aliev's office said the fax was
written in Cyrillic and came from the NLMSA, Space TV
reported on 8 January. Aliev's office went on to say that
"taking into account the high level of the health service in
Iran, the wish to come to Azerbaijan for medical treatment
causes at least amazement," and it accused the NLMSA of
trying to harm Azerbaijani-Iranian relations.
Dilenchi described his objectives in an interview
broadcast by ANS TV on 25 December. He said: "We will split
up Iran and will liberate our territory occupied by Iran
because only a minor part of Azerbaijan in the north is
liberated [presumably the Republic of Azerbaijan] but its
major part is under the occupation of Persians." He added
that Chehragani is on par with turn-of-the-century
Azerbaijani nationalist Sattarkhan. (Bill Samii)


ETHNIC PROBLEMS RESURFACE AMONG TURKMEN, KURDS.
Iran is not an ethnically homogenous country, so ethnic
issues always exist as an undercurrent in the Iranian
political ebb and flow. But in the run-up to the February
parliamentary election, ethnic issues are resurfacing among
the predominantly Sunni Turkmen and Kurdish minorities.
The strongest indication of this is in the predominantly
Turkmen regions in northeastern Iran. Originally, this made
up Khorasan and Mazandaran Provinces, but redistricting
resulted in the addition of Gulistan (Gorgan) Province. While
the stated reason for doing this was to simplify
administrative processes in view of a growing population,
local observers believe the main motivation was to divide the
roughly 1.35 million Turkmen and decrease the chances of
ethnic identities superceding identification with the state.
Nurjan Ak, an Iranian expert on Turkmen affairs,
described the impact of state policies in a December
interview with RFE/RL's Turkmen Service. First of all, he
said, the Turkmen would like a single Turkmen province,
rather than three separate ones. Also, they resent the fact
that the Christian, Jewish, and Zoroastrian minorities have a
set number of parliamentary seats guaranteed to them, whereas
the predominantly Sunni Turkmen have no such guarantees.
In terms of the pending parliamentary elections, Ak said
that the Turkmen vote is divided among reformist, hardline,
and pro-Turkmen candidates. Division of the voting districts
and constituencies is advantageous to the hardliners, Ak
said, because they have the advantage in publicity and in
local supervisory boards.
Representatives from Turkmen communities in 14 countries
attended a conference of the World Turkmen Humanitarian
Association in Ashgabat at the end of December. Two Iranian
representatives were there, too, including Sunni cleric Abdol
Rezaq. Speaking at the conference, Turkmenistan's President
Saparmurat Niyazov said that Iranian Turkmen should increase
their identification with co-ethnics from other countries.
This does not imply any deterioration in state-to-state,
Iran-Turkmenistan relations. Iranian ambassador to Ashgabat
Mehdi Mir Abutalebi and Turkmen Foreign Minister Boris
Shikhmuradov held "positive" talks on the extradition of
Iranian convicts and on new visa regulations, IRNA reported
on 31 December.
Long-standing ethnic problems were seen among Iran's
Kurdish population, too. According to the 13 December
"Kurdish Media" and the 28 December "Iran" newspaper, in
early-December university students at Ardebil's Medical
Science University struck over the poor quality of their food
and the decrepit condition of their educational facilities.
In November, Kermanshah's thrice-weekly "Bakhtar" reported
that students wrote to Azad University's chancellor to ask
for Kurdish-language teaching in Kermanshah universities. And
in February they had protested about the lack of Kurdish-
language classes in the universities, with the result that
Tehran's Shahid Beheshti University promised to open a
Kurdish Studies department.
Also in February, protests about the trial of Kurdistan
Workers' Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Ocalan were suppressed
violently by Iran's Law Enforcement Forces. The failure of
the Khatami administration to do anything about this led to
complaints from Sanandaj parliamentary deputy Seyyed Maruf
Samadi ("Khordad," 3 July) and from local writers.
Shokrollah Javan, writing in "Iran-i Farda" in October,
wanted to know why nothing was done about the suppression of
Kurdish demonstrators, while there was such an uproar about
the suppression of the July demonstrations in Tehran. Javan
asked President Mohammad Khatami if Kurds are not equal
before the law: "Were not the Kurdish people and the Kurdish
youth worth anything that you did not condemn the inhumane
action [in Sanandaj] in the way that you condemned the events
at Tehran University dormitory? ...Is the promise of civil
society and political development only for those who live in
Tehran?"
Salah al-Din Abbasi, writing in an earlier issue of
"Iran-i Farda," was also underwhelmed by so-called "civil
society" and what he sees as "Pan-Shiism." He wrote that the
predominantly-Sunni Kurdish people are frustrated that there
are no local Sunni governors, deputy governors, judicial
officials, or religious officials, although there is one
Kurdish governor. What Abbasi sees as "Pan-Shiism"
effectively excludes a substantial number of people from the
"united body of Iran," with the result that the Iranian Sunni
community's trust is "weakened."
Parliamentary representative Abdolrahim Nurbakhsh gave
other examples of factors that undermine the Kurdish
population's trust in the central government. "Chronic
unemployment" and no local factories, "the lack of job-
generating centers," and the "unkind approach of central
hiring officials" has forced alienated youth to leave the
country illegally to find jobs. Others "have been forced to
join the PKK." (Bill Samii)


KHATAMI UNDERMINES HIMSELF.
Before breaking the Ramadan fast on 29 December,
President Hojatoleslam Mohammad Khatami gave a speech which
could be interpreted as a criticism of regulations affecting
the 18 February parliamentary election. Khatami said that at
times, "rulers control all the instruments of power without
people's consent and without being answerable to anyone.
...people were duty-bound to surrender to the wishes of the
state." But now societies are built on rights, while state's
have "duties and responsibilities," so "it is no longer the
case that governments have rights and people have a duty to
accept whatever they say." Khatami then cited Imam Ali, whose
martyrdom anniversary was being commemorated that night.
According to Imam Ali, "people have rights over the
government," including the right to criticize their rulers.
Imam Ali goes on to say, according to Khatami, that the ruler
has a duty to "act responsibly towards the people." Khatami's
statements indicate that he is not entirely happy with the
course of events in the run-up to the parliamentary election,
but his mild and indirect criticisms are leaving his
supporters dissatisfied. In turn, this is threatening the
future of the pro-reform political coalition behind his
electoral victory.
Thirty-two prominent Iranian political figures sent an

<< Continued to next message >>>

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 11:53:19 -0500
From: "by way of Farhad Abdolian <farhad@algonet.se>" <Bobby@WWW.DCI.CO.IR>
Subject: RADIO FREE EUROPE-IRAN WEEKLY REPORT-PART 2/2

<< This message is part 2 of a previous message >>>

open letter urging Khatami to ensure that the parliamentary
election is not rigged, IRNA reported on 4 January. Among the
letter's signatories are the secretary-general of the
Militant Clerics Association, Hojatoleslam Mehdi Mahdavi-
Karrubi; Hojatoleslam Mohammad Asqar Musavi-Khoeniha;
parliamentarian and secretary-general of the Islamic Assembly
of Women, Fatemeh Karrubi; Islamic Labor Party founder
Soheila Jelodarzadeh; and former Khatami adviser Seyyed Mehdi
Imam-Jamarani.
At the sermon marking the 8 January end of Ramadan,
Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei criticized the letter.
"Legal organizations, including the Interior Ministry and the
Guardians Council--the former responsible for implementing
and the latter responsible for supervising the elections--are
charged with appropriate tasks and they follow the law. ...If
the organizations [the Interior Ministry and the Guardian
Council] differ on a matter and are not sure whether it is
legal or not, then they must resolve the problems among
themselves. In order to create a commotion, some people
accuse [certain] individuals or organizations for their
actions. This is below the dignity of Islamic officials."
Ayatollah Ostadi of the Guardians Council told state
television on 5 January that writing such a letter "is not
wise...prior to discussing the issue among ourselves." He
went on to say that supervising the election is the Guardians
Council's responsibility, rather than the executive branch's,
and he rejected suggestions that there are any problems
between the Interior Ministry and the Guardians Council.
In fact, problems over the election laws persist. The
most serious indication of this occurred on 2 January when a
parliamentary walkout occurred. This was brought about by
Mohammad Reza Bahonar's proposal for the elimination of
second round run-offs. Bahonar proposed that anybody who
gains a majority should win, whereas under the existing law
the winner had to gain at least one-third of the votes.
Objecting to this proposal as contrary to the constitution
and Islamic law, enough deputies walked out that a quorum
could not be formed. The next day, after a closed-door
session, 113 deputies voted against and 110 voted for the
motion to hold single-stage elections. It was decided that
whoever earns 25 percent of the vote wins, and in case of a
second round, the winner just needs to gain a majority.
Interior Minister Abdolvahed Musavi-Lari gave his
grudging approval of this latter measure, telling IRNA that
Bahonar's proposal would have meant "the governing of a
minority over a majority."
The Guardians Council also is strengthening its control
over every stage of the electoral process (as predicted in
"RFE/RL Iran Report," 27 September 1999). The Guardians
Council announced that it is not sufficient for parliamentary
candidates to be Muslims. They also must show commitment to
Islam. This would be determined by local supervisors who
could vouch for the candidates' attendance at pro-regime
rallies and at the Friday prayers.
And as usually happens, the Guardians Council's actions
were described as unconstitutional. "It is the explicit
wording of the constitution that 'candidacy in elections' is
the natural right of every citizen and that nobody and no
authority has the right to deny or restrict this right," a
commentary in the 5 January "Iran" stated. The commentary
went on to say that judging a person's faith and religion "is
entirely in the hands of Almighty God." Legal experts Ali
Shokuri-Rad, Mahmud Akhundi, and Mohammad Reza Kamyar all
stated, in interviews with the 3 January "Mosharekat," that
the Guardians Council is exceeding its authority.
Another point of contention relates to the role played
by state broadcasting in the election. Islamic Republic of
Iran Broadcasting Director Ali Larijani has been criticized
frequently for the favorable coverage he gives to hardline
candidates and causes, and he also has been criticized for
IRIB's hostile stance towards reformists. Interior Minister
Musavi-Lari told IRNA: "what we are after is that all the
organs should apply equal justice and especially IRIB should
remain neutral in the upcoming elections." In a 4 January
meeting with IRIB's Supervisory Council, Khatami said
television must remain impartial and should contribute to
peace and tranquility.
All of these developments, as well as Khatami's
relatively muted and belated reactions to them and to
preceding ones, seem to have reduced the Iranian president's
support among the country's political elites. An anonymous
"university professor in Tehran" said, the German agency dpa
reported on 2 January, that an alliance is evolving, going
beyond just reforming the Islamic system to forming a secular
system. He added that in his view, Khatami will be the main
victim of this process. (Bill Samii)


ANTI-CORRUPTION CAMPAIGN ANNOUNCED.
"The people are complaining about the unhealthy
relationships in certain executive machinery and the
application of the principle: it is not what you know; it is
whom you know--particularly in the signing of agreements--and
bribery and the receiving of illegal sums of money,"
according to Hojatoleslam Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi, chief of the
National Control and Inspection Organization, which is
charged with combating corruption and supervision of proper
implementation of laws. Raisi went on to say, according to a
4 January television broadcast, that most of the reported
complaints involve the municipalities, the State Social
Security Organization, hospitals, and the Law Enforcement
Forces. Implying that Kish Free Trade Zone is a hotbed of
debauchery, he added that the cultural atmosphere there "does
not conform to Islamic values."
In order to address such problems, the Judiciary, which
supervises the National Control and Inspection Organization,
has issued instructions that the courts must investigate its
reports on an "out-of-turn basis."
Another indicator of the extent of state corruption was
a statement by Administrative Tribunal chief Hojatoleslam
Qorban-Ali Dori-Najafabadi. He told the 29 December "Tehran
Times" that the Administrative Tribunal was being created to
"investigate the complaints lodged against government
organizations and its affiliated bodies." But in a cautionary
note, Dori-Najafabadi said the tribunal is overloaded with
35,000 accumulated cases and it does not have sufficient
resources to deal with them.
The corresponding comments of Raisi and Dori-Najafabadi
suggest that bureaucratic rivalry may undermine their
efforts. Their comments also support suggestions that this
anti-corruption campaign probably will not achieve much (see
"RFE/RL Iran Report," 27 December 1999). (Bill Samii)


BENEFICIARY OF CHECHNYA WAR.
President Hojatoleslam Mohammad Khatami sent a message
of congratulations to the acting president of the Russian
Federation, Vladimir Putin, Iranian state television reported
on 4 January. As Russian artillery continued to hammer Grozny
and Chechen forces tried to retake the city's northern
suburbs, Khatami's message expressed his hope that the
Chechnya crisis "would end in a peaceful manner as soon as
possible." But the Russian military industrial complex is
reluctant to see the conflict end, the 29 December
"Izvestiya" suggests, and Iran is a beneficiary of this
alleged policy.
According to "Izvestiya," there are now only nine
Russian military hardware dealers, compared to 21 last year,
and this will strengthen export possibilities. The Russian
government, furthermore, has promised soft loans to the
military-industrial complex this year. Helping Russian
exports is the battle-testing of weapons systems in Chechnya.
The "Izvestiya" report says, "Cynical as it may sound,
Chechnya is a kind of storefront for prospective foreign
customers."
Iran is one of these customers. Iranian acquisition of
goods associated with nuclear, biological, and chemical
warfare is common knowledge, but Iran is also a customer for
Russian conventional weapons. Among Iran's Russian weapons
are T-72 Main Battle Tanks, armored personnel carriers, self-
propelled howitzers, Multiple Rocket Launchers, ZSU 23-4
anti-aircraft artillery pieces, and MiG-29 (Fulcrum) and Su-
24 (Fencer) aircraft. Most of these items, and most likely
some new ones, have seen service in Chechnya. (Bill Samii)


COMPETITION AMONG SOUTH AMERICAN HIZBALLAH.
Two Hizballah organization's are jockeying for dominance
in the tri-border region of Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay,
Asuncion's "ABC Color" reported on 5 January. Leader of the
Ciudad del Este Islamic Education Center and the local Shia
mosque, Said Mohammad Fahs represents the wing with a
"conciliatory attitude with Western society." The opposing
"radical wing" of Hizballah is led by Bilal Mohsen Wehbi, who
is supposedly "pro-Iranian." Fahs survived an assassination
attempt by his opponents, so they tried to discredit him
through blackmail. He told "ABC Color:" "First they wanted to
kill me. ...now they are accusing me of being a child abuser
and a homosexual. ...the Paraguayan Police must clarify this
incident." Regional police cracked down on local Hizballah
organizations on 22 December out of concern that they may be
planning terrorist operations, and on the same day Iran
announced its withdrawal from a Colombian slaughterhouse
project (see "RFE/RL Iran Report," 27 December 1999). (Bill
Samii)

*************************************************
Copyright (c) 2000. RFE/RL, Inc. All rights reserved.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 13:39:07 -0500
From: "by way of Farhad Abdolian <farhad@algonet.se>" <IRANEHMAN@AOL.COM>
Subject: Iran never stopped attacking

Iran never stopped attacking

Iran 1 Mexico 2
Lineups:
Mexico - Christian Martinez, Claudio Suarez, Joaquin
Beltran, Gerardo Torrado, Mario Mendez, Emilio Mora (Alejandro
Nava, 70), Daniel Osorno (Ignacio Hierro, 61), Ramon Ramirez
(Julio Estrada, 88), Juan Pablo Rodriguez, Cuauhtemoc Blanco,
Luis Hernandez.
Iran - Hadi Tabatabei, Javid Zarrincheh, Mehdi
Hashemi-Nasab, Mohammed Khakpour (Mahmood Fekri, 65), Sattar
Hamedani, Alireza Emamifar, Hamid Estili (Siroos Dinmohammadi,
65), Mehdi Mahdavikia, Esmaeil Halali (Mohammed Navazi, 86),
Khodadad Azizi (Ali Mousavi, 70), Ali Daei
Attendance: 34,289
(half-time 2-1)
Scorers:
Mexico - Luis Hernandez (3rd minute), Cuahtemoc Blanco
(18th)
Iran - Ali Daei (26th, penalty)

Mexico one of top 10 teams in the world faced an unexpected opponent.
Before judging Iran's performance against Mexico we should look at Mexico's
recent performance.
On February 19 1999 Mexico trashed Egypt 3-0 in Hong Kong Carlsberg Cup.
Later on March 11 99 they beat South American team Bolivia 2-1 in prestigious
US Cup.
2 days later they put down USA 2-1 to hold the first place.
During the Summer of 99 they drew world's toughest opponent Argentina in a
friendly match.
Egypt was no match against Mexican and lost 2-0. in Korea Cup. Mexicans
continue their winning by beating Chile 1-0 and trashing Venezuela 3-1 in
Copa America.
During confederation Cup, Mexico showed their dominance by wasting Saudi
Arabia 5-1,
a draw against Egypt 2-2, 1-0 win against Bolivia and USA. In their final
match of Confederation
Cup
they beat King of Football Brazil 4:3. Mexico had several draws and very few
loses since World Cup.

World class players such as Christian Martinez, Claudio Suarez, Mario Mendez,
Ramon Ramirez Juan Pablo Rodriguez, Cuauhtemoc Blanco, Luis Hernandez makes
us wonder if Iran's Ali Daei, Mahdavikia and Din Mohammadi are any thing less
than World class players. Iran lost but we did not quit. Iran's 55%
possession shows clearly that our players were no training camp for world
class Mexican players. After 13th minutes ball barely rolled over to Iran's
zone. Mexicans were always busy defending and worrying about Daei's fast
attacks.

First Goal happened only 3 minutes after the referee started the match.
Khakpour's poor
performance
resulted in first goal. The slow motion of match shows Khakpour looking at
Tabatabaee while
ball
was few meter above his head, when he saw the ball Luis Hernandez striking
fast header
left no chance for Tabatabaee to save the ball.
2nd Goal was as the result of Khakpours lack of stamina which caused a free
kick for Mexico.
Khakpour's uncalled tackle will defiantly be criticized by Iran Coach and
fans. Khakpour General
performance was poor, short and inaccurate passes which always intercepted by
Mexicans
makes
you wonder. Khakpour's poor performance resulted in his substitution later in
2nd half. Fekri
who
replaced Khakpour clearly added life to Iran national team. According to some
Iran played with
10 players for 65 minutes, presence of Khakpour was not felt through out the
match.
On the other hand Khodadad Azizi's performance was nothing short of
spectacular. Although
Azizi is a striker he helped the midfield to compensate for absence of Din
Mohammadi and
Karim Baghari. Azizi unselfish act almost bought Iran a goal when Daei missed
the target due to
loss
of balance.
Ali Daei and Mousavi each had an one on one opportunity against the Goal
keeper which were
denied.

Over all Iran played well and deserved a draw. It is safe to say Iran is
worthy team against
giants of Football world wide.

Report Card
Tabatabaee: 8 (Good positioning, fast reactions)
Zarincheh: 10 (always there when Khakpour was not)
Khakpour: -1 (Not even one move by Khakpour was beneficial, Worst player of
the match)
Fekri: 5 (Tough and dangerous moves, Not needed)
Hasheminasab: 9 (Well positioning, good stamina, Well rounded player)
Hamedani: 7 (extremely well at times, missed the ball and bad crossing)
Kia: 6 (Kia was not on par with his legendary performance)
Dinmohammadi 7 (he played 20 minutes he had a good chance at goal)
Estili: 10 (Good player, used 110% of his potential )
Halali: 8 (played well, in control high energy player)
Navazi: lack of playing time can not be ranked
Azizi: 10( two in one! striker and play maker! )
Musavi 5 (missed two good chances)
Daei 10 (there is no player as dedicated and hard working as Ali Daei)
Emamifar 10 (Very physical, good positioning, and to the point)

For more news visit
http://www.irankicks.com

Please forward this email to your soccer loving friends

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 13:35:55 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Letter to Kofi Anan on behalf of students under death threat

Honorable Mr. Kofi Anan,The Secretary General of United Nations.
N.Y.,U.S.A.

Your Excellency,
According to various sources from inside Iran, two of the many arrested
students of the last July event of Tehran University have been sentenced to
death in an unfair and secret trial.Mr Ahmad Batebi who previously was
condemned to 10 years imprisonment for showing a blood soaked T-shirt to the
media is now on death row, and Mr. Akbar Mohamadi who is accused of throwing
a bottled bomb (which has not been proven in any public trial nor was any
lawyer present or evidence presented),has also been sentenced to death.

Your Excellency,
It is sad to point out that all who are responsible for vicious attack on
defenseless students, in the middle of the night, last July are still free.
By contrast, many freedom lovers including the executives of the Melat
party,Mr. Seif and Mr. Namazi(whose leaders Parvaneh and Daruish Frohar along
with many Iranian writers, were brutally murdered in the fall of 1998.)have
been jailed since last July without charges and despite their poor health. It
is even more dramatic that the writers and Frohar murderers have not been
tried or even all been named.

Your Excellency,
Some 2500 years ago our beloved Cyrus the great, a noble Iranian, announced a
human rights charter that the United Nations now longs to embrace as its
foundation. It seems so unfair that his posterity must face this inhumane and
unjust treatment on the threshold of the third millennium. Mr. Khatami
suggested that the year 2001, be the year of the dialogue of the
civilizations. You have welcomed this idea and just approved 12 million
dollars for this agenda. Lets start with the very source of the dialogue. We
ask that you and Mr. Khatami begin this dialogue by recognizing the dilemma
that the Iranian students and other freedom lovers in Iran are presently
facing, and by striving to achieve the path of justice for all.

Your Excellency,
We the undersigned, are deeply concerned about the destiny and health of Mr.
Batebi, Mr. Mohammadi and all the political prisoners in Iran and we implore
you to use your influence to obtain an open and fair trial with the presence
of an attorney for them.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:20:53 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: Rafsanjani Defends His Family, Career

Rafsanjani Defends His Family, Career

HAMSHAHRI * Expediency Council Chairman, Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, said
that during his government it was discovered that Saeed Emami's gang was
opposed to the nation's detente policy. He was tried in a court for offenses
he had committed and was subsequently dismissed from his post as deputy
intelligence minister. However, he was later appointed an adviser [to the
ministry]. Meanwhile, Intelligence Ministry was purged from undesired
elements during my tenure.

On economic issues he said, "When I took office, the country's foreign
obligations stood at $12.5 billion. When I left the office after 8 years, the
country had $17 billion of outstanding loans in addition to $12 billion in
reserves." Rafsanjani said he urged Abdullah Nouri to run for the Parliament
before his indictment, adding that after Nouri's imprisonment President
Khatami called on me to run.

He said the reforms were initiated in the last parliamentary elections during
which it became known that the public was strongly in favor of the move.
"Despite a massive propaganda campaign against (my daughter) Faezeh Hashemi,
she secured a high number of votes. This encouraged other reformists to enter
the political scene, which led to May 23 presidential elections."

FMI Candidates Need Not Apply!

HAMSHAHRI * 69 candidates were disqualified by the Guardian Council.

Some of the disqualified candidates are: Abbas Abdi, Abdullah Nouri, Alireza
Nouri [Abdullah Nouri's brother], Hamid Reza Jalaiepour, Ezatollah Sahabi,
Ibrahim Yazdi, Hashem Aghajari, Elahe Koolaee, Gholamabbas Tavassoli,
Habibollah Payman and Hashem Sabbaghian. Most members of Freedom Movement of
Iran are among the disqualified.

Right's Overture?

IRAN * This IRNA-affiliated daily reported that Morteza Nabavi, member of the
rightist Islamic Society of Engineers, has proposed that political factions
discuss their concerns in jointly-held meetings in a bid to reduce disputes
among them. Experience shows factional disputes would lower public
involvement in the affairs, he said.

GC Will Remember This day!

IRAN * Abbas Abdi, member of Islamic Iran Partnership Party who has been
informed of his disqualification for the upcoming parliamentary elections,
said he should not have been disqualified if the assessment procedure were
based on the Constitution (lawful). "I do not approve the qualifications of
those who disqualified me." In the future, Guardian Council (GC) members
would come to regret what they are doing today (rejecting candidacy of
reformists), he added.

I Paid the Price for Speaking out My Mind

SOBH-E EMROOZ * Hamid-Reza Jalaiepour, Asr-e Azadegan editor, said the GC
must announce on TV the reasons behind disqualification of candidates. He
added that the council has disqualified reformist candidates for political
reasons only. "I am aware of my offense (for which my candidacy was
rejected). I supported the political development," he underlined.

A Bitter Experience

SOBH-E EMROOZ * Hojjatoleslam Mohammad Araqi, jury member of the Special
Court for the Clergy (SCC), said if it was not for his moral commitment, he
would not participate in the trial of Abdullah Nouri. The trial was a bitter
experience because a well-known cleric stood trial who, unfortunately, cast
doubt on the revolutionary principles and also Imam Khomeini (R.H.) through
articles published in Khordad.

Action by Right, Reaction by Left

ASR-E AZADEGAN * This reformist daily quoted Najafqoli Habibi, member of the
Islamic Iran Partnership Party, as saying that if extremist behavior are
observed at the May 23 Front, it is only a response to (because of the
tactics used by) the "right." Further, no one should question the character
of such highly-regarded public figures as Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and
Mirhussein Musavi; they are an important part of the Iranian history.

Rally in Tabriz

AKHBAR-E EQTESAD * This pro-reform daily reported that a group of people in
Tabriz rallied in support of the candidacy of Mahmoud Ali Chehregani, an
advocate of Azarbaijan's culture and identity, in the upcoming parliamentary
elections. He was unable to register before the deadline, because he was
detained by authorities.

Two More Newspapers on Trial

AFARINESH * Press Court Judge Saeed Mortazavi said two newspapers, Sobh-e
Emrooz and Kayhan, would stand trial next week.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:24:10 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: Australian Immigration Minister to Visit Tehran

Australian Immigration Minister to Visit Tehran

TEHRAN (AFP) - Australia's immigration minister is to visit Iran later this
month as part of a regional tour, the Australian Embassy here announced
yesterday.

Drug smuggling and illegal immigration will be at the top of the agenda in
Philip Ruddock's talks with Iranian officials when he visits from January 18
to 21.

In 1999 about 1,200 illegal immigrants entered Australia coming from Iran's
neighbor, Iraq, and another 1,100 from a second neighbor, Afghanistan, the
embassy said.

Australia and Iran are partners in the fight against drugs. Australia, along
with the countries of the European Union, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and the
United States, is a member of the Dublin group, which works to combat drug
smuggling.

Ruddock's trip is also due to take him to Jordan, Pakistan, Syria and Turkey.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:24:54 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: UK Professor Optimistic About Britain-Iran Relations

UK Professor Optimistic About Britain-Iran Relations

* In the Words of Christianity Iran Is Much More Sinned Against Than Sinner

IRAN NEWS POLITICAL DESK

TEHRAN--- Professor of international relations, Fred Halliday, hopes that
Britain and Iran could put the past to one side and make progress during
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi's groundbreaking visit to London.

"For Britain and Iran, for Europe and the Middle East as a whole, the
exchange visits of Kharrazi and (British Foreign Secretary Robin) Cook are
very significant," he said.

The professor from the London School of Economics was speaking in an
interview with IRNA, ahead of Kharrazi's two day visit which will include a
meeting with Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Cook is expected to become the first British minister to visit Iran, when he
pays a reciprocal visit to Tehran in the next three months.

Halliday said that he believed there was now a realization in Britain that
Iran is an "essential part of the international relations of several areas,"
including the Persian Gulf, the Middle East question, the Caucasus, Caspian
Sea and South Asia.

"Iran is at the center of five or six major crucial areas of international
conflict and international negotiations and without Iran there can be no
progress," he said.

Questioned about the history of turbulent relations between the two
countries, the British professor said there has been a "whole range of issues
dividing Britain from Iran not just since the Islamic Revolution of 1979 but
long before that."

But on any balance sheet of the last century, he admitted that what Britain
did to Iran was a "far greater violation of international law than what Iran
has done to anyone else."

"Let us not forget in both world wars, Iran was invaded by Britain and other
forces, let us not forget in 1953 the British and Americans overthrew the
democratically-elected government of Iran.

"Let us not forget most importantly that when Iraq invaded Iran in September
1980 in complete violation of the U.N. Charter, Britain and other countries
refused to condemn Iraq, refused to call for a return to pre-conflict
frontiers and in general condoned Iraq over many years," Halliday said.

He said that the world was now much more aware of the covert support given to
Iraq in the war and that the charge of criminality against the West was
"greater and greater."

Halliday, who has authored several books including Islam and the Myth of
Confrontation, believed that it was the responsibility of British writers and
academics to remind British audience of what Britain did to Iran in the 20th
century.

"In the words of Christianity, Iran is more sinned against than sinner," he
said, but he felt that countries with bad relations should not obstruct the
development of ties.

The University of London professor used examples of France and Germany, and
Ireland and England as countries who had been "able to move on without
denying the past" on the basis of common interests and a new generation of
leaders.

"There will always be people in Iran who will criticize Britain and the
British press," he said. "In a 100 years time, people will still talk about
British conspiracies in Iran."

The academic pointed out there would also be those in Britain suspicious of
Iran and the Islamic Revolution, but said: "You are living in an unreal
world" if you expect the press in Iran to never criticize Britain or the UK
newspapers never to criticize Iran.

He suggested that as a first step to overcome sensitivities was to "accept
there will continue to be critical voices." Developing trade and convening
conferences to discuss the past were also proposed as important initiatives.

"The West has to talk to Iran and Iran has to talk to the West, but it
doesn't mean that they have to agree," Halliday emphasized, while expressing
great hope that there would be a "new chapter" in British-Iranian relations
from the exchange visits.

He did not believe there was any single reason prompting the restoration of
ties, nor that the initiative was at the behest of Tehran, as made out by the
UK press.

"With a new President in Iran and new prime minister in Britain, there was a
new mood and a real willingness not to forget the past but to move on to
build upon common interests," the professor said.

"I do not think there is any reluctance in Britain," he said. "There has been
a general wish on the British side to improve relations for several years."

He also dismissed suggestions that the UK government was unduly influenced by
the U.S. and the Zionist lobby that has caused the delay in London repairing
its ties with Tehran.

The Zionist influence in the UK was "not the same" as in the United States,
he said.

"Clearly, Britain has close ties with the United States and close relations
with Israel, but you have to be realistic," he said, adding that there were
many international issues, like Cuba, where the UK and America did not agree.

The academic suggested that Iran itself was a "good case where Britain simply
isn't a follower of the United States." The United States is against
diplomatic and commercial relations with Iran, whereas the UK "is in favor
and argued for a long time against American sanctions." But to put it into
context, he said that it was "an illusion to think you can follow a foreign
policy that doesn't take America into account."

He believed that sooner or later Iran would have to develop "not friendly but
normal relations with the United States."

Without normal diplomatic ties with Washington, he said that Iran would "not
be able to be a full participant of the international economy."

Halliday thought that an important factor in developing relations between
London and Tehran was Iran's improving stature in the region and the Muslim
World.

"Iran has show through statements of the Organization of the Islamic
Conference and other diplomatic statements how it is playing and
contemplating a more active and constructive role in the interlocking set of
Middle East conflicts," he said.

"What is very striking to people in Western Europe is that Iran is a center
of stability in the area," the professor said.

Iran was a "very important part of the international security of the region,
whether dealing with the Persian Gulf, Saddam of Iraq, the Afghan Taliban or
instability in the Caspian Sea or Caucasus," he explained.

"There is no other country with the continuity, with the stability and
diverse involvement that Iran has," he said, adding the South Asian nuclear
arms race, the coup in Pakistan and the unresolved Kashmir conflict also
underlined its importance. Halliday said he was "very impressed" with
President Khatami, whose writing showed him to be a "very educated and
independent mind, someone who is confident of his Islamic and Iranian culture
and who is calling for a dialogue between civilizations."

He said that both himself and many scholars endorsed his call for dialogue,
which he said should not just be an academic exercise or construed only in
abstract metaphysical statements, but should involve political as well as
religious leaders.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:25:20 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: Countdown to final Ballot

Countdown to final Ballot

Leftist daily Sobh-e Emrooz quoted an informed source at the Governor's
Office, as saying that seven percent of disqualifications have been based on
"local vetting", while none of the rightist candidates have been
disqualified.

Pro-Khatami daily Payam-e Azadi reported that the reason for disqualification
of some candidates has been "lack of belief in an important pillar of the
Islamic Republic, the Special Court for the Clergy (SCC).

Jailed former interior minister, Abdullah Nouri and other Iranian reformers,
including some 30 sitting MPs, have been barred from running in key
parliamentary elections next month.

u Freedom Movement of Iran (FMI) leader, Ebrahim Yazdi, said both he and
Nouri intended to appeal against their disqualification "within 24 hours," as
required by Iran's electoral law.

Yazdi said he had been told he was a member of an illegal political party,
was not a good Muslim and was not loyal to the Constitution and the principle
of the supremacy of spiritual Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei.

"No court has declared us illegal," Yazdi said, adding that he wanted
documentary proof of the allegations against him.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:29:46 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: Customs Law to Be Overhauled

Customs Law to Be Overhauled

ABRAR-E EQTESADI ** Head of the Customs Administration Mehdi Karbassian told
the daily, "Customs Law will be amended with the input given by merchants and
businesspersons. The draft of new law will be completed by the end of Iranian
month of Bahman (Feb. 20) taking into account the experts' opinions and
suggestions. The administration is also to seek public opinion on the law
before presenting amended draft to the Cabinet for final seal of approval."

Smaller Gov't, Increased Productivity

AKHBAR-E EQTESAD ** The daily quoted Fariborz Raees Dana, an economic expert,
as saying, "elimination of unnecessary ministries and agencies is called for
rather than merging these institutions. To downsize the government, the
government's duties and responsibilities must be clarified first. Meanwhile,
the most important points to address are the [flawed] government management
structure and overly excessive number of employees who are on government
payroll."

Corrupt, Incompetent Management Won't Pay Workers

ENTEKHAB ** In an interview with the daily, Parviz Ahmadi, head of the
managing board of the Islamic Council for Labor said, "Poor management,
embezzlement and insufficient liquidity are the reasons behind companies
being short on cash and the employees not getting paid."

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:31:54 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: France, Iran to Jointly Assemble Peugeot 206

France, Iran to Jointly Assemble Peugeot 206

IRAN NEWS ECONOMIC DESK

TEHRAN--- Iran and France have signed an agreement to jointly assemble
Peugeot 206 in Iran, it was announced here yesterday.

Iran Khodro Company singed the accord on behalf of Iran while Peugoet Company
signed it for France.

The 10-year-long contract goes into effect as of October 2001 and under which
some 120,000 Peugeot 206 cars will be assembled in Iran Khodro Company each
year.

Per the agreement, 65 percent of auto parts for this model of Peugeot will be
manufactured in Iran.

According to the report released by Iran Khodro Company, the mutual agreement
allows the Iranian company to produce and export as many assembled cars as it
imports the car parts in C.K.D forms.

The production of this model started in 1998 and is now widely used in
Europe.

According to IRNA, sophisticated technology has been used for production of
Peugeot 206 which is the sixth generation of its kind.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:36:05 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: Quake Jolts Kazeroun, Fars Province

Quake Jolts Kazeroun, Fars Province

IRAN NEWS NATIONAL DESK

TEHRAN--- An earthquake measuring 4.2 on the Richter scale jolted Kazeroun in
Fars Province at 12:20 hours local time (8:50 GMT), IRNA reported.

Shiraz seismological center, affiliated to the Tehran University's Geophysics
Institute, registered the epicenter of the tremor at 20 km east of Kazeroun.

There are no reports of probable damage or injuries. Since a strong tremor
measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale jolted Kazeroun in May 6, 25 quakes
measuring at least four degrees on the Richter scale have shaken the area.

Kazeroun is located 150 km west of Shiraz (provincial capital) and is
considered an earthquake-prone area.

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000 18:35:41 EST
From: Sohrab68@AOL.COM
Subject: MOHAJERANI: People's Resistance Should Be Reflected in Artistic
Creations

MOHAJERANI: People's Resistance Should Be Reflected in Artistic Creations

IRAN NEWS NATIONAL DESK

TEHRAN--- Ataollah Mohajerani, Iran's Islamic culture and guidance minister,
in Abadan Sunday said: "People of Khorramshahr were able to resist against
the enemy for 45 days with just ordinary guns but unfortunately we have not
been able to truly portray this resistance in our shows, stories and artistic
works", IRNA reported.

Mohajerani, speaking among a gathering of people and artists of Khorramshahr
participating in the Festival of Social Films of Abadan, added that the epic
of the people has to be presented so that based on that story the heritage of
eight years of Sacred Defense can be preserved.

Mohajerani also visited the Shalamcheh Martyrs Shrine and stated the need to
have cultural activities in order to show the heritage of the Sacred Defense.

He added the Shalamcheh zone is suitable for showing the heritage of the
Sacred Defense and it ought to be planned in such a way so that visitors get
a real sense of eight years of Sacred Defense not only in the Shalamcheh zone
but in all of the war zones.

Mohajerani stated the readiness of his ministry for preservation of the
memories of the Sacred Defense.

End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 7 Jan 2000 to 11 Jan 2000