Topics of the day:
By Lee Yanowitch
CANNES, France (Reuters) - An Iranian woman in a headscarf might seem out of place at the Cannes Film Festival, where starlets are exhibited in transparent gowns and sunbathers go topless.
But 18-year-old Samira Makhmalbaf, the youngest director ever invited to show a film at the French Riviera cinematic gathering, does not seem perturbed.
``I'm just happy that people from different countries can see my movie and maybe understand it, and it will not just be a film for Iran,'' she told Reuters in an interview.
Her film ``The Apple'' is not only drawn from a true-life story of 12-year-old twin girls locked in their house since birth but the people involved play their own characters.
It is not in competition for the festival's top prize, the Golden Palm.
The girls have not been washed since birth and cannot talk, read or interact normally with other people.
``I saw the report on TV and I found it very horrible and dark and I couldn't get it out of my mind. So I thought that if I could make some good of it and find the reason it happened, it might be better,'' Makhmalbaf said.
So she asked her father, director Mohsen Makhmalbaf, for a camera, went down to the poor neighborhood of Tehran where the girls lived and started shooting.
The result is a half documentary, half feature film about Massoumeh and Zahra Naderi and a social worker alerted by a neighborhood petition who finally convinces, or rather forces, their father to release them into the outside world.
Entrenched in Iran's Islamic patriarchal tradition he repeatedly justifies his actions, saying: ``My daughters are like flowers. Unmarried men are like the sun, they will make them wilt.''
Asked if she had any trouble with the Iranian authorities because of the subject matter, Makhmalbaf said: ``The most important thing was to have the permission of my father. I wanted to tell the story in depth and not waste time.''
The hour-and-a-half film was shot in 11 days and was originally meant to be a short film. ``I wanted to do it quickly before the girls had time to change because of their contact with society,'' she said.
Makhmalbaf stopped short of saying the film was a social statement about the place of women in Iranian society.
``It's about the condition of women and freedom, not only in Iran, but in the whole world, because women are always at a disadvantage,'' she said.
Copyright 1998 Reuters Limited.All rights reserved.
student gathering on laws concerning experts assembly
tehran, may 18, irna -- the interior ministry on sunday authorized
a gathering of islamic union of students and university graduates
to discuss councils and laws concerning experts assembly.
the gathering is to be held in laleh park, near tehran
university, on may 25 and would feature speeches by the
editor-in-chief of the presently banned daily 'payam-e daneshjou
(message ofstudent)', heshmatollah tabarzadi, and several other
the student organization was asked by the interior ministry to
ensure the necessary coordinations with relevant authorities
regarding the said event, the ministry's statement added.
::irna 18/05/98 10:27
diversity of ideas should be within law and order -president
tehran, may 15, irna -- president hojatoleslam mohammad khatami here
thursday paid an impromptu visit to the press and print media festival
here thursday and engaged in informal talks with publishers.
in his talks to an audience at the print media festival here he supported the need for diversity of ideas in the islamic society but observed also that diversity of ideas should not be allowed to turn into confrontational attitudes.
he said no one group can claim the right to existence to the exclusion of any other group.
the president said every activity must be consistent with the laws of the state. he said 'freedom' is a gem that glitters only in a society of law-abiding citizens.
the fifth print media festival of iran has been in prgress here since saturday.
::irna 15/05/98 01:11
real development needs well balanced, overall development policy
tehran, may 14, irna -- the english daily 'iran news' thursday
said that mere political development cannot solve the problems
of the country and stressed that real development must cover all
aspects of political, economic, cultural, and social dimensions in a
this will enable the country to embark on its development projects in earnest and without unnecessary tension, added the editorial.
one of the indicators of political development is the growth of the press both in terms of quality and quantity, stated the daily, adding that quantitatively, the country's press is inching to the desired figure of 6 million copies per day.
qualitatively, the nation's press too has gone through a substantial growth during the past few months reaching as close as possible to the threshold of the freedom of the press, noted the daily.
however, what is really needed for political development of the country is formation of legitimate political groups and parties. ''if they are not formed properly, any other step taken toward political development will be in vain,'' pointed out the daily.
therefore, a well balanced and all encompassing development policy, which includes all the above-mentioned dimensions of progress should be devised by president mohammad khatami's government to ensure long-term prosperity of the nation, recommended the dialy in conclusion.
::irna 14/05/98 13:23
This is to notify you that the video clip of Stoning to Death in mullahs' regime is now available on iran-e-azad web site.
The video, is a documentary recording of four individuals being stoned in one of the security centers in Tehran in the presence of high ranking officials of the regime's judiciary. The video tape, smuggled out of the country by the Mojahedin, shows the representative of the prosecutor reading out the verdicts. He declares that the verdicts were issued by Ali Razini, the head of Judicial Organization of the Military Forces. Razini can be seen in the video tape, and throws the first stone. The prosecutor of military forces, Niazi, is also present. Razini is currently the head of Tehran's Justice Department and also heads the "Special Clerical Court." At a point in the vedio, you can see the picture of Ayatollah Khomeini hanging behind the above mentioned authorities of the regime on the stage.
Please be advised that the images in this video are NOT EASY TO WATCH. They are NOT suitable for children or people with heart conditions. As unfortunate as it is, this brutal and inhumane action is part of the reality in Iran under the rule of the mullahs and we are presenting it to further expose the atrocities committed by them.
Iran-e-azad Organization May 18, 1998 (28 Ordibehesht, 1377)
To join the SoNCRI's mailing list, akhbar (news),
send an e-mail to email@example.com
and in the body of the e-mail write:
To Unsubscribe, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
and in the body of the e-mail write:
KlaCh ay az mCaHbh¡ Kanm ebady ba rvznamh¡ jameh Smarh¡ 8, 27 bhmn 1376
Syryn ebady jzv avlyn znan ayrany bvd kh bh msnd qxavt nSst v avlyn zn riys
dadgah dr taryK ayran ast. vy daray ktabhayy Gvn òtaryKGh asnad Hqvq bSr dr
ayranå, òHqvq kvdkå, Hqvq pnahndgan v snt v tjdd dr Hqvq ayranå ast.
vy dr sal 1996 mylady az svy sazman dydh ban Hqvq bSr bh KaTr mTaleat Hqvq dr zmynh Hqvq bSr kh mnjr bh pySbrd Hqvq dr ayran Sd, lvH tqdyr dryaft krdh ast.
agrGh ta knvn teryf jame v vaHdy az Hqvq bSr kh mvrd qbvl hmh Hqvqdanan jhan
baSd nSdh, ba aynHal nbayd fkr krd kh Hqvq bSry vjvd ndard. agrGh mramha v
mslkhay mKtlf dr teryf mnSa Hqvq bSr ba hm frq darnd vly dr hmh¡ ayn mslkha
Hq Hyat bSr bh rsmyt SnaKth Sdh ast v ansany ra nmytvan bdvn dlyl v bdvn
mjvz kSt. ansanha Azad bh dnya Amdh and v bnabrayn bayd Azad zndgy knnd.
aelamyh jhany Hqvq bSr dr Avryl 1945 ba Srkt nmayndgan 50 kSvr bh mnXvr jlvgyry az jng byn dvltha v saKtn dnyay bhtr tCvyb Sd. ayn aelamyh dvltha ra mvrd KTab qrar my dhd, zyra memvla dvltha Hqvq bSr ra zyr pa my gZarnd, Gvn qdrt brtr dr dst Anhast v afrad mXlvm jayy bray tXlm v Skayt br elyh dvltha ndarnd. hrgz frdy ra bh jrm zyr pa gZaStn Hqvq bSr mHakmh nkrdh and blkh dvltha v sazmanhay dvlty bray tKTy az Hqvq bSr mHakmh my Svnd.
bedha òmycaq byn almlly Hqvq mdny-syasyå v òmycaq byn almlly aqtCady v ajtmaeyå bh tCvyb rsyd v dr ayn mycaqha aelamyh Hqvq bSr byStr SrH dadh Sd.
br asas òmycaq byn almlly Hqvq mdny-syasyå, kmysyvny br ajray Hqvq bSr dr jhan nXart dard v ayran yky az aexay kmysyvn ast.
tasys kSvr asraiyl ba pStybany Amryka kSvrhay mslman ra tSvyq bh tCvyb mnSvr knfrans aslamy ba Srkt nmayndgan 30 kSvr mslman dr jdh erbstan bh taryK 1972 mylady Sd. ayn knfrans tHkym mbany dvsty byn dvlthay mslman, kvSS bray rySh kn krdn tbeyx nJady v astemar bh hrgvnh v Skl, atKaZ tdabyr lazm bray astqrar ClH v amnyt byn almlly ra mvrd hdf qrar dad.
bed az anqlab aslamy ayran v Cdvr aKTarhay mtedd az Trf kmysyvn Hqvq bSr sazman mll mtHd br elyh dvlt ayran, dvlt ayran TrH tCvyb aelamyh Hqvq bSr aslamy ra bh ajlas vzray Karjh aslamy dr qahrh tqdym krd. bed az tCvyb Sdn ayn TrH dr knfrans aslamy vzray Karjh, bsyary az kSvrhay mslman az jmlh ayran bh An pyvst. az An bh bed, òdvlt ayran hr zman kh az sazman mll dr zmynh edm reayt Hqvq bSr aKTar my gyrd, Hrfy bray gftgv pyda krdh ast v envan my knd kh tabe aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr hstm. ayn Hrf v astdlal fy nfsh Kvb v ba arzS ast, ama az jht Hqvq metbr nyst, Gra? bray aynkh vqty dr sal 1351 dvlt ayran bh mnSvr knfrans aslamy pyvst v yk SrT ra bray exvyt Kvd gZaSt v gft mn bh ayn SrT bh mnSvr knfrans aslamy v sayr arganha v tCmymat An my pyvndm kh agr tearxy byn mnSvr sazman mll ba mnSvr v tCmkymat knfrans aslamy vjvd daSth baSd mnSvr v mqrrat sazman mll mqdm v mjra baSd. aknvn nyz ayn SrT ra az byn nbrdh v az sazman mll Karj nSdh ast. bnabrayn az dydgah yk Hqvqqdan Hrfh ay, ayran nmy tvand bray tKTy az mvazyn Hqvq bSr bh aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr astnad knd, bray aynkh An mvqe ayn SrT ra gZaSth ast.
Tbq madh 24 aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr, òklyh Hqvq v Azadyhay mZkvr dr ayn snd mSrvT bh mTabqt ba Sryet aslamy astå. v Hqvqy kh tvsT aslam bh rsmyt SnaKth nSdh ast dr aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr bh rsmyt SnaKth nSdh ast.
bexyha adea my knnd kh mslmanan Hqvq byStry nsbt bh sayryn daSth baSnd, vly mn ba ayn tfsyr az aslam mKalfm Gvn br asas qrAn hmh dr brabr Kdavnd brabrnd v tqva tnha mlak brtry ansany br ansany dygr ast. hmh ma mKlvq Kdavnd hstym v dr Cdr aslam frqy byn blal HbSy v dygran vjvd ndaSt v aqlytha dr Azady v rfah zndgy my krdnd. Sryet mqds aslam tsavy ansanha ra mbna dansth v dyny ast fragyr v jhanSmvl br mbnay edalt v brabry ansanha. bexy mfsryn bh QlT aslam ra bh Cvrt yk amtyaz v bh Cvrt anHCar bray edh ay az mrdm jhan dr my Avrd.
tfavty bnyadyn byn aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr v aelamyh jhany Hqvq bSr vjvd ndard. hr dv bh Hqvq bSr aHtram my gZarnd v az Hkvmtha my Kvahnd kh Hqvq Kdadady ansan ra reayt knnd. ama tfsyr QlT az aslam ma ra bh byrahh my kSand. bray mcal òHq Hyat sr mnSa Hqvq bSr ast. ayn Hq bdyn menast kh jan ansan mHtrm ast dr dst Kalq ast v ksy Hq ndard bdvn mjvz qanvny dygry ra bkSd. bnabrayn, qtl bzrgtryn gnah bSry ast v qatl bayd mjazat Svd. ayn aCl hm dr aelamyh jhany Hqvq bSr v hm dr aelamyh mycaq Hqvq mdny v syasy bh rsmyt SnaKth Sdh v hm dr aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr. ama Gvn dr aelamyh aslamy qyd Sdh tmam Hqvq bh SrT reayt Sryet mqds aslam ast v az aslam tfasyr gvnagvn my Svd v ayn mvjb Sdh ast kh ma dr qvanyn kSvrman Hq Hyat ra dr bsyary az mvard nadydh bgyrym. mnjmlh qCaC, zmany amkan dard kh mrd mslmany kSth Svd v agr Sma mrd mslmany ra bkSyd v ntvanyd az Kanvadh mqtvl rxayt bgyryd qCaC my Svyd. zyra dGar bdtryn gnah bSry Sdh ayd. ama mtasfanh my bynym ayn Hq ra fqT bray mslmanha pyS byny krdh and. yeny dr qanvn mjazat aslamy qyd Sdh kh agr mrd v ya zn Qyr mslmany kSth Svd qCaC ndard, v fqT dyh dard. ps bdyn trtyb agr pvl daSth baSym my tvanym tmam zrtSty ha v msyHy ha ra bkSym v qCaC hm nSvym. Aya ayn drst ast. Aya ayn ba rvH valay edalt Kvahy kh dr aslam hst anTbaq dard? mcal dygr qCaC fqT mKCvC mrd mslman ast.
ps agr zn mslman kSth bSvd agr Kanvadh mqtvlh bKvahnd tqaxay qCaC qatl ra bknnd nCf Kvnbhay mrd qatl ra bayd bh av bdhnd. Sma tCvr bknyd, Kanvadh ay dKtrS ra az dst dadh ast tazh bayd Gndyn mylyvn tvman hm bh qatl dstKvS bdhd. Aya ayn ba rvH aslam brabry dard? Kdavnd ky frmvd òan akrmkm endallh Zkvrkmå. ayn qvanyn ra kh ma darym mslma ba rvH valay aslam hm anTbaq ndard.
my gvynd pdr v ya jd pdry bGh aS ra bkSd qCaC ndard v aKyra dydym mrdy kh ba tfng psr panzdh salh Kvd ra kSth bvd v jsdS ra mKfy krdh bvd. bed az dstgyry aqrar krd v jrm av cabt Sd, dadgah fqT bh dv sal v nym av ra mHkvm krd. ayn gvnh qvanyn Ggvnh tvjyh my Svnd? Aya my Kvahym bgvyym ayn qvanyn ba aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr mvafqt dard? bh nXr mn nh. ayn qvanyn mQayr ba hr dv aelamyh aslamy Hqvq bSr v aelamyh jhany Hqvq bSr ast. bray aynkh aslam hrgz ajazh ndadh ast pdry bGh aS ra bkSd. tfasyr QlT az aslam ast kh ma ra bh aynja my kSand.
aKTarhay kmysyvn Hqvq bSr sazman mll bh ayran bh dlyl mQayrt byn Hqvq bSr v qvanyn daKly ayran ast. Gvn ayran mtehd ast kh bh mqavlh namh hayy kh amxa krdh ast eml knd. mcla dr sal 1956 mylady sazman mll òqraddad tkmyly mne brdgy v brdh frvSy v emlyat v trtybaty ra kh mSabh brdgy astå ra tCvyb krd v dr sal 1337 dvlt ayran bh ayn qrardad mlHq Sd. dr ayn snd byn almlly òhr trtyb v ya rsvm v ya qanvny kh bh mvjb An pdr v madr v ya qym Hq daSth baSnd zny ra bdvn aynkh rxayt daSth baSd bh eqd azdvaj dygry dr Avrd. ayn brdh frvSy, v mmnve ast. v hmGnyn hr rsm v rsvm v qanvny kh ajazh bdhd kvdk zyr 18 sal bh vsylh valdynS bh azdvaj dygry dr byayd mmnve astå. vly elyrQm tehd ayran bh ayn mnSvr, my bynym kh br asas qanvn mdny ayran, sn azdvaj bray dKtr 9 sal tmam qmry v bray psr 15 sal tmam qmry ast. belavh tbCrh ayn madh my gvyd òpdr ya jd pdry Hq dard frznd KvdS ra kh bh sn blvQ nrsydh yeny zyr 9 sal ast bh azdvaj dygry drAvrd ba ayn trtyb bh mvjb qanvn mdny, pdr v jd pdry Hq dard Hty dKtr yk mahh Kvd ra bh eqd v azdvaj dygry dr byavrd v CHt Gnyn azdvajy mvkvl bh rxayt dKtr vqty kh bh sn blvQ brsd nyst.
madh 1041: nkaH qbl az blvQ mmnve ast tbCrh: eqd nkaH qbl az blvQ ba ajazh vly bh SrT reayt mClHt mvly elyh CHyH ast.
madh 1043: nkaH dKtr bakrh agr Gh bh sn blvQ rsydh baSd mvqvf bh ajazh pdr ya jd pdry av ast v hrgah pdr ya jd pdry bdvn elt mvjh az dadn ajazh mxayqh knd ajazh av saqT v dr ayn Cvrt dKtr my tvand ba merfy kaml mrdy kh my Kvahd ba av azdvaj nmayd v SrayT nkaH v mhry kh byn Anha qrar dadh Sdh ps az aKZ ajazh az dadgah mdny KaC bh dftr azdvaj mrajeh v nsbt bh cbt azdvaj aqdam nmayd.
madh 1044 dr Cvrty kh pdr ya jd pdry dr mHl Haxr nbaSnd v astyZan az Anha nyz eadta Qyr mmkn bvdh v dKtr nyz aHtyaj bh azdvaj daSth baSd, vy my tvand aqdam bh azdvaj nmayd.
tbCrh cbt ayn azdvaj dr dftrKanh mnvT bh aHraz mvard fvq dr dadgah mdny KaC my baSd.
madh 1210 hyG ks ra nmy tvan bed az rsydn bh sn blvQ bh envan jnvn ya edm
rSd mHjvr nmvd mgr Ankh edm rSd ya jnvn av cabt Sdh baSd.
tbCrh 1 sn blvQ dr psr panzdh sal tmam qmry v dr dKtr nh sal qmry ast.
bh ebart dygr dKtr nvzady ra hm Tbq ClaHdyd pdr ya jd pdry my tvan bh eqd v
azdvaj mrd dygry drAvrd v tSKyC mClHt mvly elyh yeny frznd br ehdh pdr v jd
pdry ast v hyG ks v hyG mqam dvlty Hq nXart dr ayn ra ndard. nh fqT dadgah
v dvlt blkh madr nyz Hq nXart br tSKyC ayn mClHt ra ndard. v az hmh drdnaktr
SrT CHt Gnyn azdvajy mvkvl bh mvafqt dKtr bed az rsydn bh sn blvQ hm nyst.
yeny pdr v jd pdry dKtr ykmahh ra my tvannd Svhr bdhnd v dKtr Hty dr sn 18 salgy Hq ndard Hrfy bznd. òAya ayn hman msilh ay nyst kh dr mqavlh namh sal 1956 mylady az An bh envan brdh frvSy merfy Sdh, v dvlt ayran dr sal 1337 bh An mlHq Sdh v mtehd Sdh kh ayn kar ra nkndå. ps dvlt ayran nmy tvand glayh knd kh Gra sazman mll ma ra mthm bh tjavz bh Hqvq bSr my knd. dr mqabl ayn aKTar nmy tvanym emlkrdhay Klaf asraiyl, Amryka, erbstan v Qyrh ra mjvzy bray zyr pa gZaStn Hqvq bSr bdanym.
elyrQm aynkh Kdavnd hmh ra yksan Afrydh v ansanha CrfnXr az mZhb, jnsyt, jaygah ajtmaey, mlyt, qvmyt v zban ba hm brabrnd v Hqvq brabr darnd ama mtasfanh ayn aCl dr qvanyn reayt nmy Svd. bray mcal dr mqabl jrm vaHd mjazathay mtfavt vjvd dard. mcla agr mrd v zn mjrd mslmany zna bknnd, br Tbq qanvn mjazat aslamy Cd xrbh Slaq bh hr kdam az znakaranzdh my Svd. ama agr mrd Qyr mslmany ba zn mslmany zna knd mrd bh mrg v zn bh Cd xrbh Slaq mHkvm my Svd. ya mcla qanvn mjazat aslamy mjazat lvaT ra aedam meyn krdh ast. ama mjazat òmqdmh¡ lvaTå bray fael mslman v namslman mtfavt ast. bh ayn meny kh fael Qyr mslman bh aedam v mfevl mslman bh Slaq mHkvm my Svd.
ya dr mvrd Hd òqZfå yeny thmt zna dadn bh ksy dadn. agr bh yk mslman fHS v thmt namvsy zdh Svd KTakar bh 80 xrbh Slaq mHkvm my Svd vly agr bh frd namslmany thmt v fHS namvsy dadh Svd dadgah nmy tvand av ra bh byStr az 74 xrbh Slaq mHkvm knd. ya agr mcla yk frd zrtSty fvt knd, Tbq qanvn arc aynha bayd Tbq qvanyn zrtSty tqsym Svd. ama agr yky az varcan mslman Svd mytvand tmam arc ra bbrd. tvjh Svd kh mZhb zrtSt tvsT qanvn bh rsmyt SnaKth Sdh ast. aynha mvardy ast az tbeyx dr qvanyn ayran. vly òsazman Hqvq bSr aslamyå kh bh ryast Ayt allh yzdy, riys qvh qxaiyh ayran tSkyl Sdh, v Kvd ra yk sazman Qyr dvlty naXr br ajray Hqvq bSr dr ayran my dand ta knvn sKny drbarh¡ ayn qvanyn tbeyx Amyz ayran ndadh ast , v akcr mCaHbh hay Aqay xyaiy fr ya kmysyvn Hqvq bSr aslamy ayran bh jay antqad az qvanyn naqx Hqvq bSr dr ayran v drKvast az mjls bray tjdyd nXr dr Anha fqT dr barh nqx Hqvq bSr dr bvsny hrzgvyn v asraiyl v jahay dygr aTlaeyh my dhd. Anha bh ayn mqvlh tvjh ndarnd kh Hqvq bSr mqvlh ay ast Hqvqy v nh syasy.
mtasfanh qanvn mjazat aslamy aCl brait ra mvrd tvjh qrar ndadh ast. mcla madh¡ 226 qanvn mjazat aslamy my gvyd: qtl nfs dr Cvrty mvjb qCaC ast kh mqtvl Srea mstHq kStn nbaSd v agr mstHq qtl baSd qatl bayd astHqaq qtl av ra Tbq mvazyn dr dadgah acbat knd.
bh ayn trtyb ksy my tvand mra bkSd v dr Qyab mn v bdvn aynkh mn qadr bh dfae az Kvd baSm mra bh mhdvraldm bvdn mthm knd v bgvyd kh mn brKlaf yky az aCvly CHbt krdh am kh Kvn mra mbaH my knd v az mjazat hm frar bknd. ayn brKlaf aCl brait ast Gvn Hq dfae mn dr brabr yk dadgah byTrf az mn slb my Svd.
drqanvn asasy br mHakmh jraym syasy v mTbveaty dr mHakm dadgstry bh Cvrt elny v dr Hxvr hyit mnCfh takyd Sdh ast, vly bed az gZSt 20 sal v elyrQm drKvast Hqvqdanan bray ajray ayn aCl az qanvn asasy, ta knvn jraym syasy ra tHt envan xdanqlaby dr ataqhay drbsth v Qyrelny mHakmh krdh and, nmvnh aS ra dr mvrd frj srkvhy v amyrantXam v Qyrh daSth aym, v Hal Ankh ayngvnh mHakmat v lv aynkh bh Azady mthm mnjr bSvd drst nyst zyra baysty elny v ba Hxvr hyit mnCfh baSd. aKyra Aqay mvsvy lary meavn Hqvqy Aqay Katmy riys jmhvr envan krdh and kh jrm syasy bayd teryf bSvd v dr mHakm dadgstry v ba Hxvr hyit mnCfh rsydgy bSvd.
In the context of agreement on all the issues under discussion:
- with regard to pending investigations under ILSA, the Secretary would exercise her authority under section 9(c) of the Act and determine that it is important to the national interest to waive the imposition of sanctions against the EU firm involved (Total), and,
- assuming the US and the EU continue the enhanced level of cooperation on non-proliferation, counterterrorism and other important issues, we expect that a review of our national interest in cases similar to South Pars, involving the exploration and production of Iranian oil and gas resources, would result in like decisions with regard to 9(c) waivers for EU companies.
- recognising the process in which the United States and EU have engaged with respect to Iran and our agreed texts on non-proliferation, counterterrorism and other matters, the United States is prepared to engage with the EU in a sustained process on Libya for consideration of waivers under section 9(c) of the Act to companies from the EU, as agreed in the April 11 1997 Understanding. In this regard, the United States will work together with the EU to achieve strict enforcement by all countries of UN Security Council sanctions against Libya.
EU/US SUMMIT, LONDON 18 MAY
Today's EU/US Summit has seen important progress in EU/US relations. It has resulted in the establishment of a basis for resolving the differences over extraterritorial sanctions which have cast a shadow over the relationship for many years. Also a major initiative has been launched under which the EU and US will both work to break down barriers to trade across the Atlantic and work more closely together to pursue multilateral liberalisation.
The results of the Summit are set out in a series of joint statements and declarations:
- a statement on establishing a Transatlantic Economic Partnership;
- a declaration on the Transatlantic Partnership on Political Cooperation;
- an Understanding on Disciplines on Investment in Expropriated Properties: this includes the US commitments on waivers under Titles III and IV of the Helms/Burton Act;
- a joint statement on cooperation against international terrorism;
- a joint statement on cooperation to counter proliferation of weapons of mass destruction;
- a joint statement on our approach to developing the energy resources of the Caspian Sea basin;
- the Senior Level Group Report (SLG).
In addition, the EU has explained its interpretation of the texts relating to sanctions; and the US has explained its intentions vis-a-vis waivers under the Iran Libya Sanctions Act.
The range of these texts reflects the extent of our cooperation. The key issues addressed today were:
(a) Finding a way to tackle our differences over sanctions legislation and to reinforce our cooperation in areas such as proliferation and counter-terrorism.
(b) Agreeing to launch a new transatlantic trade initiative in the shape of the Transatlantic Economic Partnership.
NOTES TO EDITORS
Copies of all the texts referred to above are available from News Department.
- The United States and the European Union recognise the importance of Caspian Basin oil and gas resources in contributing to the economic prosperity, energy security, and stability of the region.
- These resources will be an important addition to world oil and gas supplies and require secure access routes to world markets.
- Essential to this development will be the early availability of multiple pipelines. Major export pipelines from the Caspian will accordingly contribute to the secure delivery of an important new source of world energy supplies.
- The European Union's INOGATE programme is designed to promote the security of energy supplies. It includes work on: revitalisation of the existing transmission network and on new oil and gas pipelines across the Caspian, Black Sea region and westwards to Europe; urgent renovation of hazardous infrastructure; strengthening regional cooperation; compliance with international standards; reform of the region's energy sectors; and protection of foreign investments. The European Union's TRACECA project supports the development of an east-west transport and trade corridor from Central Asia, across the Caspian Sea, the Caucasus, and the Black Sea to Europe.
- The United States strongly endorses commercially and environmentally sound projects to develop Caspian energy resources and their transport to international markets. US technical assistance and training programmes are helping many of the Caspian states improve their legal regimes to encourage private investment in energy development and transport. The United States underscores that the Caspian Pipeline Consortium project is a critical component of a commercially driven multiple pipeline system for the entire region. The United States has provided a grant to Turkmenistan to complete a feasibility study for a trans-Caspian gas pipeline.
- Commercial considerations will first and foremost determine decisions on the development of energy projects and export routes. It is the private sector that will make the investments and take the risks. Projects therefore need to be economically viable and competitive. They must also meet the highest environmental standards.
- The United States and the European Union welcome the progress made by the littoral states towards formulating a legal regime for the Caspian that will enhance rapid development of the region's energy resources. They express the hope that the littoral states will reach early agreement.
U.S. WAIVES SANCTIONS AGAINST GAS FIELD INVESTMENTS IN IRAN (Reaches understanding with EU on Cuba sanctions) (740)
By Bruce Odessey USIA Staff Writer
Washington -- The Clinton administration has taken two actions that could reduce foreign irritation with unilateral U.S. sanctions laws aimed at Iran and Cuba, laws denounced by most other countries as extraterritorial, but which have powerful supporters in the U.S. Congress.
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright announced May 18 in London that she was waiving sanctions against three companies -- Total of France, Gazprom of Russia and Petronas of Malaysia -- that invested in development of Iran's South Pars gas field.
She said that a State Department investigation found that the companies' activities did violate the 1996 Iran-Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA), making them subject to sanctions.
But Albright said her decision to waive the law's provisions "will be more effective than sanctions -- which will not stop the project -- in achieving ILSA's objectives."
Senator Alfonse D'Amato, the New York Republican who sponsored ILSA, quickly issued a written statement calling Albright's decision "a mistake." "It will send a signal to others that they can do business as usual with Iran at a time when Iran continues to pursue weapons of mass destruction and continues to sponsor terrorist acts," D'Amato said.
ILSA mandates sanctions against U.S. and foreign persons that invest $20 million in any 12-month period in development of Iran's petroleum resources, but allows the president to waive sanctions if he determines such waiver is in the U.S. national interest.
Albright said her decision should improve U.S. cooperation with the European Union (EU), Russia and Malaysia on a number of other problems.
She cited EU's existing cooperation with the United States against proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and against terrorism. She said she expected any future cases involving EU companies' development of Iranian oil and gas "would result in like decisions with regards to waivers."
She said Russia has committed to deny all assistance to any programs for weapons of mass destruction and to enhance its multilateral cooperation on export controls. She said imposing sanctions against the Malaysian firm would hurt U.S. efforts to resolve the Asian financial crisis.
Albright also announced May 18 in London that the United States and the EU have reached an understanding for resolving their dispute over the 1996 Helms-Burton Act unilateral U.S. sanctions aimed at Cuba.
Under the understanding, the two sides would impose a number of disciplines -- such as denying commercial credits and guarantees -- against future transactions anywhere in the world for investment in expropriated property.
Also, a special section of the U.S.-EU understanding would require EU commercial assistance agencies to deny assistance to projects found to involve illegally expropriated property in Cuba.
Albright said the EU has agreed to implement the understanding once the United States changes the Helms-Burton law to allow waivers of Title IV. That title denies U.S. visas to foreign persons found to be engaged in trafficking in property of U.S. citizens confiscated by the Cuban government.
Congress would have amend the Helms-Burton Act to grant authority for the president to waive Title IV sanctions. Albright said the Clinton administration will seek that legislation, but its chances for passage during the few working days left during Congress' current session remain uncertain at best.
The two sides would implement the understanding as a matter of policy. They agreed to propose inclusion of the understanding in the Multilateral Agreement on Investment (MAI) negotiations, which are scheduled to resume in October. If the increasingly difficult MAI negotiations in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) reached a successful conclusion, then its provisions would involve legal commitments, not just policy.
The president already has waiver authority under Title III, which gives U.S. citizens the right to sue in federal U.S. courts any foreign persons trafficking in their property that was confiscated by the Cuban government. President Clinton has invoked such six-month waivers ever since Helms-Burton took effect.
In 1997 the EU started a dispute-settlement case in the World Trade Organization (WTO) against Helms-Burton. The EU suspended the WTO case in April 1997 when the two sides agreed to attempt to negotiate a resolution. In April 1998 the WTO case lapsed, but the two sides continued negotiating to produce the understanding just announced.
TEXT: ALBRIGHT STATEMENT ON WAIVING IRAN-LIBYA SANCTIONS (Best option available, secretary says) (1740)
Washington -- Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has waived sanctions against French, Russian and Malaysian oil companies that are participating in the development of Iran's South Pars gas field.
In a May 18 statement issued in London, Albright said that a State Department investigation did find that the activities of Total, Gazprom and Petronas violate the 1996 Iran-Libya Sanctions Act.
She said sanctions would not prevent the South Pars project from going forward, however. She added that the European Union (EU) and Russia have cooperated with the United States on discouraging Iran's development of weapons of mass destruction and support of terrorism.
Albright said also that the waivers should promote cooperation with the EU, Russia and Malaysia in a number of other bilateral and multilateral issues.
Following is the text of Albright's statement as prepared for delivery:
Statement by the Secretary of State Iran and Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA): Decision in the South Pars Case
London, United Kingdom
May 18, 1998
I have determined that the investment by the firms Total (France), Gazprom (Russia), and Petronas (Malaysia) in the development of Iran's South Pars gas field constitutes activity covered by the Iran and Libya Sanctions Act of 1996. This determination follows an extensive review of the actions taken by the firms in this case as they relate to the provisions of the law.
At the same time, exercising the project waiver authority of Section 9(c) of the Act, I have decided that it is important to the national interest to waive the imposition of sanctions against the three firms involved. Among other factors, I considered the significant, enhanced cooperation we have achieved with the European Union and Russia in accomplishing ILSA's primary objective of inhibiting Iran's ability to develop weapons of mass destruction and support of terrorism.
Granting this waiver does not mean we support this investment; we do not. In fact, we made vigorous efforts to stop it, including representations at the highest levels of the governments involved. When it appeared that the project would nevertheless go forward, we closely studied the possible application of sanctions. We concluded that sanctions would not prevent this project from proceeding.
While unsuccessful in stopping the South Pan deal, our efforts to discourage the Indonesian firm Bakrie from proceeding with the development of the Balal oilfield contributed to Bakrie's apparent decision to withdraw although the impact of the Asian financial crisis was also important.
My decision to grant section 9(c) waivers in this case is based on the conclusion that, taking all factors into account, it is the option that best serves U.S. interests. I also decided that it would not be appropriate to grant country-wide waivers under Section 4(c) of ILSA.
In choosing among the available options, I took into account a number of factors relating to our national interests. In the case at hand, waivers will enhance our ability to work with the Europeans, Russia, and Malaysia on a host of other bilateral and multilateral concerns. For example:
-- Russian ratification of START II, cooperation on nonproliferation, and progress on internal economic reform.
-- Resolution of differences over Helms-Burton, including a new discipline to deter investment in illegally expropriated property worldwide, including in Cuba, and further EU support for democratic change and human rights in Cuba, and creation of a new U.S.-EU initiative to liberalize trade.
-- Multilateral cooperation on Iraq to maintain isolation of Saddam Hussein and to bring about compliance with UNSCR obligations, including cooperation with UNSCOM/IAEA inspections.
-- Progress on Kosovo and Bosnia, where cooperation of our NATO allies is essential, and on other European security issues.
-- Cooperation with European and Asian partners, including Malaysia, in addressing the Asian financial crisis and the rapidly unfolding events in Indonesia. We were also concerned about the effect of sanctions on a major Malaysian company at a time when Malaysia is feeling the serious effects of the crisis.
Moreover, granting waivers will prevent retaliation against U.S. firms, which the imposition of sanctions would probably engender, and avoid possible challenges based on claims related to treaties and other international obligations. These considerations buttress the view that a waiver in this case best serves our national interest.
We remain deeply concerned about Iran's support for terrorism and efforts to acquire weapons of mass destruction. While there are indications that the Iranian government may be trying to improve its relationship with the West, we have not seen substantial change in Iranian policies of greatest concern.
ILSA has been a valuable tool in making clear to others the seriousness of our concerns about Iran's behavior. The Act encourages the Administration to develop multilateral cooperation to deter Iran from acquiring weapons of mass destruction and supporting terrorism. Through vigorous diplomatic efforts, we have made progress toward these goals. I believe that my decision in the South Pars case will promote even more progress and will be more effective than sanctions -- which will not stop the project -- in achieving ILSA's objectives.
We already have a very high level of cooperation with France and our other European allies on nonproliferation issues. As reflected in the joint U.S.-EU statement announced today, the EU is taking additional steps, separately and in cooperation with us, to strengthen further their policies in this area. This includes a EU commitment to give high priority to proliferation concerns regarding Iran and a commitment to stepped-up efforts to prevent dual-use technology transfers where there is a risk of diversion to weapons of mass destruction programs.
This new commitment also involves U.S.-EU cooperation on developing better controls over "intangible" (e.g., electronic) technology transfers, on closer coordination of export-control assistance to third countries, and on increasing diplomatic efforts to stem technology exports by other countries to proliferators, including Iran.
On counterterrorism, we also enjoy a very high level of cooperation with our European partners. We have issued a joint statement with the EU that highlights the EU's commitment to cooperation and identifies specific common objectives. We are also working with EU members and other countries to ensure ratification of all eleven counter-terrorism conventions. The EU will be giving particular attention to obtaining adherence by Central and Eastern European states that are seeking EU membership.
More can be done, and we will continue to work with our European allies to broaden our nonproliferation and counterterrorism cooperation even further. In light of their essential cooperation, and as long as this heightened level of cooperation is maintained, we would expect that a review of our national interests in future ILSA cases involving Iran similar to South Pars, involving exploration and production of Iranian oil and gas, would result in like decisions with regard to waivers for EU companies.
The United States remains strongly opposed to oil and gas pipelines which transit Iran and, as a policy matter, we will continue to encourage alternative routes for the transport of Caspian energy resources, such as trans-Caspian pipelines and the Baku-Ceyhan route, and the Caspian Pipeline Consortium route. We will carefully examine any proposals for trans-Iranian pipeline construction across Iran for possible implications under ILSA and take whatever action is appropriate.
Russia has announced new undertakings, including a January 22 Executive Order that strengthens the government's authority to control missile technology and other transfers of concern. As a result of a subsequent executive order issued on May 14, 1998, the Russian Government is now taking significant steps to implement the earlier order to ensure compliance, including establishing supervisory bodies in all enterprises dealing with missile, or nuclear technologies. The positive start of our joint export control working group is another promising step. While the Russian Government is acting to implement fully President Yeltsin's policy, considerable work remains to be done. We will remain closely engaged with the Russian Government at all levels to ensure effective enforcement.
On May 17, G-8 countries, including key European countries, Canada, Japan and Russia, made an important commitment to deny any kind of assistance to programs for weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery. They also committed to enhance their cooperation on export controls, including the exchange of information. We have also made nonproliferation progress regarding Iran with other countries. For example, Ukraine recently agreed to forgo all nuclear cooperation with Iran, including making a commitment not to go through with the sale of turbines destined for Iran's Bushehr nuclear plant.
Malaysia has not been actively engaged with us on nonproliferation issues, nor has it been a source of nonproliferation concerns. It has acted as a force for moderation in Islamic circles. Malaysia is our partner for the upcoming session of the U.S.-ASEAN Dialogue, which will address for the first time the establishment of export control procedures. Imposing sanctions on a major Malaysian firm would have disrupted our efforts to work with Malaysia and other countries to address the Asian financial crisis.
We will review, periodically, the rational interest factors applicable to ILSA cases and to our waiver policy to determine whether adjustments are needed.
We also remain intensely concerned about the potential for terrorist actions emanating from Iran, and we would expect our friends and allies to take appropriate steps in response to any Iranian involvement In terrorist activities.
We fully recognize the dangers to Israel of weapons of mass destruction from its enemies in the regions dramatized by Iraq's SCUD attacks in 1991. The Administration has worked closely with Israel to address possible missile threats and will continue to do so. Since 1988, the U.S. has jointly funded the ARROW missile defense system; provided Israel with space-based early warning notification of ballistic missile launches, and jointly funded a feasibility study of the Israeli Boost Phase Intercept Concept.
Finally, I want to emphasize that our position on Iran has not
changed. Although Iran's new government has made it clear that it
wants increased cultural contacts between the U.S. and Iran, it is not
clear how far it is willing to go in changing those policies of
greatest concern to us. We therefore will continue to press for
enhanced international cooperation to counter Iran's efforts to
acquire weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems, and
its support for terrorism. Today's decision is designed to strengthen