Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 11 Jan 1999

There are 10 messages totalling 303 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. Iranian man sets fire to apartment, kills 11
2. Iran's intelligence chief to stay on despite admission of murders: paper
3. Kuwait denies torture of Iranian workers
4. Two weekly papers shut down in Iran
5. Iranian boys dressed as girls to get a whipping
6. Iran arrests bird smugglers
7. Iranian army kills three in shootout with drug traffickers
8. Iran's clergy calls on people to pray for rain
9. Iranian military court to probe murders of dissidents
10. Mosalemi's favourite article

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:13:37 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iranian man sets fire to apartment, kills 11

TEHRAN, Jan 10 (AFP) - A man suffering from paranoia set fire to
his apartment west of Tehran and burned to death 11 members of his
family, newspapers reported Sunday.
Jamshid Salehi, a retired army official, poured petrol in the
apartment in Marlik district of Karaj, a suburb west of the capital,
before dawn on Friday when his children and grandchildren were
asleep, they said.
Eight members of the family, including Salehi himself, died in
the apartment and three others in hospital.
According to Hamshahri newspaper, only Salehi's 26-year-old son
survived the fire.
Sobh-e-Emruz (This Morning) newspaper said the 57-year-old
Salehi had made several threats to kill members of his family, but
that he had not been taken seriously.
Neighbors accused firefighters of arriving too late to save the

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:13:48 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iran's intelligence chief to stay on despite admission of murders:

TEHRAN, Jan 10 (AFP) - Iran's Intelligence Minister Ghorban-Ali
Dorrie-Najafabadi will stay on in his post despite the admission
that secret agents were involved in the recent murders of
intellectuals and political dissidents, the Tehran Times said
The English-language daily, citing "well-informed sources," said
Dorrie-Najafabadi had first "decided to resign but later changed his
mind" after a speech by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on
Friday praising the performance of his ministry.
Khamenei complimented the intelligence ministry for "showing
courage" in exposing the involvement of its agents in the murders of
nationalist opposition leader Daryush Foruhar and his wife,
Parvaneh, on November 22 as well as the kidnappings and murders of
several liberal writers in early December.
"No other secret service in the world would do such a thing ...
The attacks against the ministry are totally unfair," he said.
The wave of murders shocked the nation and led to calls from
supporters of reformist President Mohammad Khatami for structural
changes in the government, mainly the judiciary and secret
The hardline Keyhan newspaper said Thursday that Khatami had
called for Dorri-Najafabadi's resignation, but that the ministry has
refused to budge.
The Tehran Times said a number of intelligence officials,
including a director general, had been arrested in connection with
the recent murders, but did not identify them.
While the entire regime has condemned the murders, it has been
split over the motives behind the killings.
Islamic conservatives believe the murders were orchestrated by a
"foreign enemy seeking to destablize the regime," while Khatami's
supporters blame Islamic extremists who have waged a campaign to
undermine the president's reform program.
Khatami said Saturday he was "determined to dry out the roots of
political violence whether they have their roots at home or
The conservative speaker of parliament Ali-Akbar Nategh-Nuri
said Sunday that "people must be vigilant against the Satanic
provocations of foreigners."

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:14:10 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Kuwait denies torture of Iranian workers

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 8 (AFP) - Kuwait has denied a report from
Tehran that a group of Iranian workers were tortured by police in
the Gulf Arab emirate before being deported.
Kuwaiti prisons and deportation centres are "in excellent
condition" as documented by Amnesty International, the International
Committee of the Red Cross, and UN High Commissioner for Refugees,
the interior ministry insisted late Thursday.
Most of the group of 26 Iranian workers were deported for
violating residency rules, said spokesman Liuetenant Colonel Ahmad
al-Sharqawi. The deportation was carried out in cooperation with
their embassy.
He dismissed any charges of torture and said one of the group,
Esfandiar Abdolalizadeh, was arrested for violating traffic laws in
November 1997, before a deportation order was issued.
But Abdolalizadeh tore up his passport prior to boarding a plane
on May 24, prompting Kuwaiti authorities to ask his embassy to issue
a temporary travel document, said Sharqawi. He was then deported on
October 28.
A Tehran newspaper reported Wednesday that the group were beaten
and tortured by Kuwaiti police before being sent back handcuffed to
The Iranians, "who had gone to Kuwait for work or travel were
returned to Iran in an appalling state after suffering numerous
tortures," reported the Iran daily.
An Iranian police official told the paper that Abdolalizadeh
showed signs of torture "on his hip and his hands," and his
belongings "had been taken from him illegally."
He said he was arrested after six years of working in Kuwait
"with a police permit" when he complained to police about being
robbed in the street, and was beaten "with whips and cables" during
his 13 months in detention.
"They gave me electric shocks to my hands and laughed
raucously," he said
"Every now and then we witness the return of such Iranian
travellers from Kuwait, who have suffered physical and mental
torture at the hands of Kuwaiti officials," Iran quoted judge Nasser
Seraj as saying.

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:14:43 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Two weekly papers shut down in Iran

TEHRAN, Jan 5 (AFP) - The Iranian authorities have banned two
weekly publications, one of them for insulting a deceased senior
Islamic cleric, the culture ministry announced Tuesday.
Shalamcheh, a hardline fundamentalist weekly, lost its
publication permit for having "directly offended" the late Grand
Ayatollah Abolqassem Khoi, a prominent Shiite cleric, culture
ministry spokesman Issa Saharkhiz said.
The paper, named after the site of a major battle in the 1980-88
war against Iraq, wrote in its last issue that Ayatollah Khoi, who
died in Iraq five years ago, had a file with SAVAK, the Shah's
dreaded secret police.
The paper is run by the outspoken Masoud Dehnamaki, and is often
sharply critical of President Mohammad Khatami's moderate
administration and its supporters.
Another weekly, Fakour, close to intellectual circles, was
banned "for its irregular publication," Saharkhiz added.

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:15:41 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iranian boys dressed as girls to get a whipping

TEHRAN, Jan 4 (AFP) - Two teenaged Iranian boys who dressed as
girls and wandered the streets of Shiraz in southern Iran have been
sentenced to be given a whipping, the newspaper Qods reported
Kourosh and Mohammad, both aged 15, were arrested by police
while walking along Eram Boulevard in Shiraz wearing the headscarves
and overcoats mandatory for Islamic women, and trendy sunglasses,
the daily said.
They told police they wanted "to trick young people and get
money from them."
A Shiraz court ordered them whipped for "offending public
decency and dressing up as women," the paper said.

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:15:56 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iran arrests bird smugglers

TEHRAN, Jan 3 (AFP) - Iranian authorities arrested 11 bird
smugglers in the south of the country on Sunday as they tried to
smuggle rare birds out of the country for customers in the Gulf
states, the official IRNA news agency reported.
The arrested men had captured various birds in the southwestern
Ramormuz and Mahshahr regions, IRNA said adding police discovered a
haul of 36 birds destined for illegal export across the Persian
Millions of migratory birds travel across the country towards
the end of autumn, to spend the cold winter months in the marshlands
of southwestern Iran.

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:16:12 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iranian army kills three in shootout with drug traffickers

TEHRAN, Jan 3 (AFP) - Iranian soldiers killed "three bandits and
drug traffickers" following gun battles in eastern Iran near the
Afghan border, the official news agency IRNA reported Sunday.
The traffickers were killed during army operations in the Khaf
and Ghaen regions in eastern Iran, IRNA added without specifying
when the shootout occurred.
Smugglers from Pakistan and Afghanistan use Iran as a transit
territory for drugs destined for markets in the Gulf states and
The Iranians have been fighting the traffic for many years and
seize nearly 200 tonnes of different drugs a year.
Being caught with more than 30 grammes of heroin or more than
five kilogrammes (11 pounds) of opium carries the death penalty

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:16:34 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iran's clergy calls on people to pray for rain

TEHRAN, Jan 3 (AFP) - Iran's Shiite Moslem clergy called on
people in the holy city of Qom, south of Tehran, to pray for rain on
Monday, as many regions here still await crucial winter rains, the
evening daily Etelaat reported Sunday.
Congregational "prayers for rain will take place in Qom on
Monday morning at 9:00 a.m. (0530 GMT) with the participation of
thousands of the faithful," it said adding that they would be led by
Grand Ayatollah Nouri Hamedani.
"Municipality and provincial authorities will take special
measures to provide transport for the participants," the paper said.
Iran, a country subject to periodic droughts, is currently
suffering from insufficient rain and snowfall, especially in central
and southern desert regions.
Water levels are reportedly low in the country's many
reservoirs, crucial for agriculture and city water supplies.

Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 23:17:37 GMT
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@ALGONET.SE>
Subject: Iranian military court to probe murders of dissidents

TEHRAN, Dec 31 (AFP) - An Iranian military court is to
investigate the recent killings of two writers as well as a
nationalist dissident and his wife, the official news agency IRNA
reported Thursday.
The agency, quoting an unnamed spokesman for the military court,
said the general court that had originally taken up the cases sent
them to the military tribunal after deciding a special investiagtion
was needed.
But the spokesman stressed that the cases "have nothing to do
with the armed forces or the police."
The cases concern the fatal stabbing of secular nationalist
leader Daryush Foruhar and his wife, Parvaneh, on October 22.
The killings were followed by the kidnapping and murder of two
secular writers, Mohammad Mokhtari and Mohammad Pouyandeh, in early
Another intellectual, Majid Sharif, was also found dead under
mysterious circumstances around the same time, but the authorities
said he had died of a heart attack.
Iranian authorities have condemned the chain of killings and
blamed them on a "foreign enemy plot" aimed at undermining the
Islamic regime.
But a member of Foruhar's Iranian Nation's Party this week
alleged that "branches of Iranian intelligence services" were
involved in the murders.
The authorities have pledged to investigate the killings and a
number of arrests were announced earlier, but police have not
divulged any information.
The military spokesman said the court will inform the public on
any progress made in the investigation.
Meanwhile several liberal opposition leaders sumbitted an open
letter to President Mohammad Khatami on Thursday demanding
information on the results of the investigation, IRNA reported.
Among the signatories were former foreign minister and the head
of Iran's Freedom Movement Ebrahim Yazdi and political ally Hashem
Sabaghian, it said, citing an official in Khatami's office.
The official recalled that the president has already assigned a
special team to investigate the "suspicious murders," pledging that
information on the outcome of the probe will be made public "if they
don't hurt the proceedings."
Around 300 liberal dissidnets, academics and journalists plan to
gather at a Tehran mosque on Thursday to commemorate the 40th day of
the death of Foruhar and his wife.

Date: Tue, 12 Jan 1999 00:08:53 +0000
From: "a.abdi" <a.abdi@BTINTERNET.COM>
Subject: Mosalemi's favourite article

End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 11 Jan 1999