Date: Aug 3, 1999 [ 0: 0: 0]

Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 30 Jul 1999 to 2 Aug 1999

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Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 30 Jul 1999 to 2 Aug 1999
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There are 10 messages totalling 533 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. Up to 10 million Iranians expected to watch August eclipse
2. Iran's Revolutionary Guards threaten further press crackdown
3. Iranian cleric beaten during prayer services
4. Iran may delay trial of conservative paper: report
5. Iran no threat to other nations: defense minister
6. Iranian students still being arrested after July protests: rights group
7. U.S.-Iran Relations Remain Stagnant
9. fwd: Iran makes a big splash in Robocup 99!
10. The latest statement by Peyman, Yazdi, Sahabi, Moinfar


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 10:59:30 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Up to 10 million Iranians expected to watch August eclipse

TEHRAN, July 31 (AFP) - Up to 10 million Iranians are expected
to watch the solar eclipse on August 11, sparking concerns that the
spectacle could damage the eyesight of careless observers.
The two-minute eclipse will be visible across a 100 kilometre
(60 miles) wide stretch in the west of the country, said Reza
Mansuri of the official team observing the last eclipse of the
He told the press here that the summer heat in Iran could
"aggravate the risk to people's eyes," and recommended special
glasses to watch the phenomenon.
Iranian experts agree that observers should not watch the event
without protective eyewear.
"To protect the eyes, it is recommended that people put a
covering over the eyes or wear goggles like those used by welders,"
said Mohammed Tahgi Edalati, a professor at Tehran University.
He warned that people who disregard these precautions could be
blinded by staring at the sun.
While no official measures have been taken, some scientists are
preparing to hand out protective sunglasses, the newsapaer Abrar
The Iranian Association of Opthamology warned against using
unregulated glasses during the event.
The group's director, Hormoz Shams, was quoted in the press
Saturday as saying that not all the glasses likely to be used during
the eclipse will afford protection.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 10:59:55 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran's Revolutionary Guards threaten further press crackdown

TEHRAN, Aug 1 (AFP) - The head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards
(IRGC) vowed to take action against newspapers that insult the elite
corps amid a mounting crackdown on the nation's moderate press,
reports said Sunday.
Brigadier General Rahim Safavi said the political turmoil
created by last month's bloody riots in Tehran was a bid to weaken
the Guards and hinted at even stricter controls on newspapers.
"If any newspaper insults or disseminates false information
aimed at weakening the IRGC, the corps will take legal action
against it," he said, quoted by the English-language daily Iran
"We consider thinkers and journalists as wise people who do not
undermine the country's national security but I do have complaints
against the press.
"What we want from the press is to avoid following the steps of
the enemies," he said.
Savafi defended a letter to President Mohammad Khatami written
by 24 senior Guards commanders, published last month after
apparently being leaked to the press, that said Khatami's democratic
reforms were leading Iran to "anarchy."
"In fact the danger they had predicted did come to pass," Savafi
said, referring to the six days of riots that erupted after a
student protest over the closure of a moderate newspaper was
attacked by security forces and Islamic militants.
"What is going on in the country's political scene ... is aimed
at weakening the IRGC," he said.
The letter created a firestorm of controversy as reformists
charged it was leaked to weaken Khatami and undermine his reform
agenda while conservatives insisted it had been released to harm the
image of the Guards, a pillar of Iran's clerical regime.
Savafi also lashed out a newspapers which criticised the
militants, particularly the volunteer Basiji militia who reportedly
attacked the students with clubs and chains while police stood by
without intervening.
"I hope those who have targeted the Basiji become
revolutionaries themselves," he said.
The pro-reform press that flourished after Khatami took office
two years ago has since been the target of a relentless crackdown.
Three major reform papers have been closed down since beginning
of the year and dozens of moderate journalists have been arrested or
brought in for questioning by the conservative-dominated judiciary.
Last month's riots, sparked by the closure of a leading
pro-Khatami newspaper, were the worst unrest in Tehran since the
aftermath of the 1979 Islamic revolution.
One person died and three were wounded, according to official
Moderate newspapers said five people died and dozens were
injured, many of whom they said were later abducted from Tehran
hospitals by the secret police.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 10:59:03 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iranian cleric beaten during prayer services

TEHRAN, July 31 (AFP) - An Iranian cleric was beaten in front of
hundreds of worshippers as he held prayer services in the central
city of Isfahan, press reports said Saturday.
Ali Ghazi-Asghar was kneeling down while leading the prayer
Friday when a 28-year-old man whom authorities described as
"mentally ill" leapt up and attacked him.
Worshippers detained the unnamed attacker and Iranian officials
said there were no "political motivations behind the incident."
The incident occurred just two days after a religious school was
set ablaze by unknown vandals in Isfahan.
Student protests over the closure of a leading reformist
newspaper earlier this month sparked six days of clashes pitting
demonstrators against security forces and Islamic hardliners.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 11:00:26 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran may delay trial of conservative paper: report

TEHRAN, Aug 1 (AFP) - An Iranian press court may delay hearings
against a leading conservative newspaper after the judge dismissed
most of the jurors in the case, a moderate newspaper reported
The Hamshahri paper quoted a letter from juror Fatima
Ramenzanzadeh who said she had resigned from the jury after the
court disallowed five of her colleagues from hearings against the
Kayhan daily.
"The head of the press court has not cooperated satisfactorily
and has blocked my sincere efforts to ensure the jury is able to
perform its duties properly," she wrote in a letter to the court,
according to Hamshahri.
She said the dismissal of five of the seven jurors had mired the
hearings in a "factional" political dispute.
"I do not believe the current atmosphere makes it possible to
fulfill my duties properly and thus I will not attend the hearing"
which was due to take place Monday, she said.
The dismissed jurors were reportedly replaced but
Ramenzanzadeh's resignation would still leave the jury one shy of
the seven required under Iranian law.
The dispute is the latest controversy in the case against
Kayhan, which comes amid a bitter political battle surrounding
Iran's press.
The conservative paper was summoned after it published an
allegedly "top secret" letter from 24 Revolutionary Guards
commanders to President Mohammad Khatami which said his democratic
reforms were leading Iran into "anarchy."
Khatami charged the letter was "top secret" just days after a
hardline religious court banned the pro-Khatami paper Salam for also
publishing a confidential letter.
Salam's closure sparked student protests which erupted in six
days of bloody riots in Tehran after demonstrators were attacked by
security forces and Islamic militants.
The pro-Khatami moderate press has come under an increasing
clampdown by the conservative-dominated judiciary and reformists
have insisted Kayhan and two other conservative papers face charges
over the Guards letter.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 11:00:50 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran no threat to other nations: defense minister

TEHRAN, Aug 1 (AFP) - Iran's defense minister insisted the
Islamic republic poses no threat to other nations and accused
Western powers of engineering instability in the region, newspapers
reported Sunday.
"Security objectives pursued by the great powers have only
contributed to the spread of hostilities, wars and an imbalance in
the global order," Vice Admiral Ali Shamkhani said, quoted by the
English-language Iran Daily.
He told a meeting of Iranian military attaches worldwide that
Iran has never intended to "threaten or exert military pressure" on
other nations, the paper said.
"Iran will continue to adhere to this policy, which in essence
derives its legitimacy from Islamic principles," he said.
He called for "enhanced collaboration among independent
countries for a security system based on peace, dialogue and
Iranian officials have repeatedly attacked the United States for
its military aid to Israel as well as recent initiatives to make US
weapons systems available to several Gulf nations.
Iran has also attacked Turkey's military cooperation agreement
with Israel as contributing to instability in the region.
Tehran and Ankara are in the midst of a growing row over an
alleged Turkish air raid last month which Iran said killed five
people along the border but which Ankara claimed hit Iraqi soil.
Tehran has also lashed out at US statements supporting the
United Arab Emirates in its dispute with Iran over three Gulf
islands that effectively control one of the world's main oil supply


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 11:02:03 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iranian students still being arrested after July protests: rights group

NICOSIA, Aug 1 (AFP) - Iranian police are continuing their
crackdown on student protestors three weeks after a campus
demonstration sparked the worst unrest there since the aftermath of
the 1979 revolution, a leading human rights group said Sunday.
The New York-based Human Rights Watch named 77 people it said
had been jailed or had "disappeared" and added that up to 600 people
detained during the demonstrations may still be in custody.
The group said at least five students, who disappeared after a
meeting on July 23, have not been seen since and are thought to be
in detention.
It said one of them, Mehdi Fakhrzadeh, is a member of the
Elected Council of Student Protesters, a coordinating body of
students across the country.
HRW added that student leaders in Iran believe that between 200
and 600 people, most of them students, who were arrested in last
month's clashes are still being held by the authorities.
Police arrested 1,400 people following the July 9 protest over
the closure of a leading pro-reform newspaper, which sparked six
days of bloody clashes pitting demonstrators against security forces
and Islamic hardliners.
The unrest in Tehran left one person dead and three wounded,
according to official figures.
Pro-reform newspapers said five people died and dozens of people
were wounded, many of whom were later abducted from Tehran hospitals
by the secret police.
HRW called on the Iranian authorities to give the detained
students "immediate access to visits from families and lawyers" and
to release those not formally charged with criminal offences.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 11:02:31 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: U.S.-Iran Relations Remain Stagnant

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Rarely in the long estrangement between the
United States and Iran has there been even a glimmer of hope for a
more normal relationship.
One such moment occurred two years ago with the election of a
new Iranian president, Mohammad Khatami, a bookish intellectual who
seemed more open to the West than his predecessors during the
period of conservative Islamic rule in Iran.
But as Khatami prepares to observe his second anniversary in
office on Tuesday, not much has changed in U.S.-Iranian relations
despite American eagerness for a fresh start. Protests on Tehran
streets have dimmed prospects even more.
Under Khatami, ``The only thing that has changed is an
improvement in the atmosphere, which is a prerequisite for better
relations in the future,'' said Richard Murphy, a former top State
Department aide on the Middle East, who envisions a long
evolutionary process between Washington and Tehran.
At times, Khatami's remarks have tantalized American officials.
He has expressed regret over the hostage-taking at the American
Embassy in Tehran in 1979 and he has appealed for a ``crack in the
wall of mistrust'' between the two countries. He has said the
Muslim world can learn from the West.
Yet, the Iranian president has stood firm in his opposition to
the key American goal of a direct dialogue between the two
The U.S.-Iran alienation troubles the Clinton administration as
it has previous American governments. For two decades, the United
States has been without influence in a country whose physical size,
population, oil reserves and geographic location give Iran a
significance few others can match.
Before the 1979 revolution, Iran was a key U.S. partner for
almost three decades. The seizure of power by anti-American clerics
that year was perhaps the most significant strategic setback for
the United States in the post-World War II era.
The administration sometimes seems to go out of its way not to
offend the Iranian leadership. When students weary of political and
social restrictions took to the streets in large-scale protests in
early July, the administration maintained strict silence. Officials
were mindful that vocal support for the students by the
administration could be seen by hardliners in Iran as evidence that
the protests were covertly orchestrated by the CIA.
Be that as it may, there has been nothing covert about the
American role as Iran's ardent suitor in the past two years.
Clinton, in his most direct public appeal to the longstanding
enmity between the United States and Iran, has said he wants
``genuine reconciliation with Iran.'' And in a speech a year ago,
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright urged Iran to join the United
States in drawing a ``road map leading to normal relations.''
The administration has eased sanctions to allow the sale of U.S.
food and medicine to Iran, and has removed Iran from the official
list of countries which are either sources or transit points for
U.S.-bound narcotics. It has encouraged cultural and academic
exchanges and expedited the visa-approval process.
Iran has not responded to these initiatives. It is unclear
whether Khatami prefers the current stalemate or whether he is
being thwarted by conservative mullahs who are loyal to Iran's
``supreme leader,'' Ayatollah Ali Khamenei within whose Islam-based
strictures all Iranians must operate, Khatami included. Just this
past week, Khatami saw fit to swear his ``full obedience'' to
In its approach to the United States, Iran considers itself the
aggrieved party. It has acknowledged a change in U.S. rhetoric
toward Iran but points out U.S. sanctions remain in place. U.S.
trade with Iran was barred in 1995. In 1996, a new law was approved
requiring mandatory sanctions against any country that invests more
that $40 million in Iran's energy sector.
On other points of friction with the United States, fewer
instances of international terrorism are traceable to Iran these
days than in the pre-Khatami era. As for the Middle East peace
process, Khatami has modified Iran's earlier opposition to it but
he disappointed U.S. officials earlier this year by meeting with an
anti-Israeli Arab ``rejectionist'' group in Syria.
On human rights, personal freedoms have been expanded
significantly under Khatami but the government has drawn strong
international criticism for its arrest of 13 Iranian Jews this
year. The 13 are accused of passing secrets to Israel and will be
tried for espionage.
Meantime, private arms control analysts have raised concerns
about Iran's potential for developing chemical, biological and
nuclear weapons. The Khatami government denies it has any such
programs. But on the nuclear front, Michael Eisenstadt of the
Washington Institute on Near East said, ``There is a clear pattern
of procurement which signals non-peaceful intent.''


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 11:06:53 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>


By IPS Diplomatic Correspondent Nina Kamran

PARIS-ANKARA-TEHRAN 30TH July (IPS) Faced with new threats and warnings by the
Turkish generals and government, the Iranian clerics, having in mind the
example, decided to back off from their earlier though stand and offered a
reconciliatory rhetoric, saying the recent Turkish air raids on the border
of Piranshahr and a subsequent "aggression" on Qatour were a "mistake" that
cannot be regarded as a scenario originated from the ties between Turkey and
the Zionist regime".

Speaking to the official news agency IRNA, the Iranian deputy Interior
for Security and Intelligence Affairs Qolamhossein Bolandian played down the
recent Turkish attacks on Iranian border areas, killing 5 and wounding another
ten people by describing the incident a "mistake".

Mr. Bolandian acknowledged the area bombarded near Piranshahr is a place where
Turkey had already launched operations against the PKK guerrillas extending
from the heights of northern Iraq to the Iranian territory.

But not only the Turkish Government and military have rejected Iranian
saying their plane never bombed any area inside Iran, they even accused the
Islamic Republic of giving military training to the Turkish Kurdish Stalinist
organisation that seeks independence from Turkey.

Claiming that top Iranian officers were present at the PKK base, apparently to
train Kurdish rebels, Air Force Commander General Ilhan Kilic told "Milliyet"
newspaper he was "already receiving intelligence that Iranian officers were
training the PKK".

"There is no possibility of a mistake. That place is Iraqi soil. "They
war planes) have such electronic equipment that they cannot make mistakes. We
load in the coordinates and the computers do the bombing. Everything is
recorded", added Chief of the General Staff Huseyin Kivrikoglu, commenting on
the Iranian-claimed attack on Piranshahr, in the Iranian Province of Western

Iran systematically rejects the presence of PKK bases and peshmergas (Kurdish
guerrillas) on its soil.

However, Mr. Bolandian warned that if Turkish "aggressions" continues, Iran
will reciprocate. "This aggression is not the first one by Turkey, but we hope
it will be the last, otherwise Iran will reciprocate," he told IRNA.

Asked about the Turkish inroads in Qotur, where two Turkish soldiers had been
arrested by the Iranian border guards after they had crossed into the Iranian
territory, the official, who is in charge of Iran-Turkey security
said the "aggression" has not been an organised one, the Turkish soldiers had
penetrated 40 meters deep into the Iranian territory.

But Turkish officials, including Isma’il Cem, the Foreign Minister warned
Friday that if the soldiers are not returned immediately, relations between
two neighbours could badly suffer.

As Tehran and Ankara were trading harsh words, a joint Iranian-Turkish
delegation was visiting the area Iran says had been hit by Turkish bombs.

Mr. Bolandian said the immediate arrival of a 32-member Turkish delegation and
examination of the area hit by the Turkish fighter planes and the admission of
the fact indicated the good will on the part of Turkey.

"The Turkish delegation visited the bombardment scene and saw that the Turkish
planes have targeted two tents belonged to the Iranian tribesmen five
kilometres deep inside the Iranian territory. At first, they suggested that
US planes bombarded the point, but the experts documenting on the sharp
gradient of the place proved that the Turkish planes have fired the rockets.
The Turkish delegation have at last admitted that the bombardment has taken
place by Turkish planes", the official pointed out.

Iran has asked Turkey for both formal apology and payment of unspecified
damages, but Mr. Bulent Ecevit, the Turkish Prime Minister has rejected both

In a television interview Mr. Ecevit said that Iran has taken over the role
formerly played by Syria in supporting and harbouring the terrorist Kurdistan
Workers' Party (PKK).

The prime minister also stressed that Ankara was "seriously anxious" about the
Iranian attitude and dubbed as "flimsy pretexts" the series of accusations
recently directed a Turkey by Tehran.

Extremely worried by the Ankara-Tel-Aviv military and security agreement,
Tehran routinely accuses Israel of being behind the tensions between the two
Muslim neighbours. "The Zionist regime mischievously exploits them. Perhaps
certain elements within the Turkish army give green light to the Zionists, but
we, as a neighbouring state think that the aggressions were not intentional",
Mr. Bolandian commented.

Both the Islam-based regime of Tehran and the staunchly secularist Ankara
accuses each other of reverting to tensions to evade the public opinion from
internal chaos and troubles. "Iran's internal affairs are fairly chaotic at
moment. I imagine they want the attention elsewhere. That is why they are
behaving like this", General Kilic said.

"Some neighbouring countries, such as turkey which is currently beset by
domestic problems is diverting its people's attention by causing problems for
Iran and charging it with baseless accusations", countered the
"Tehran Times".

Shi’a Iran and Sunni Turkey are also at loggerhead on a number of other
including bitter rivalry for leadership in the newly independent Central

With existing network of pipe lines, Iran considers itself as the natural road
for transporting oil and natural gas from the Caspian Sea and oil rich Central
Asian nations to the international markets, but since it considers the US as
the Great Satan, it is loosing this opportunity to Turkey, Washington’s main
ally in the region.

Turkey is also infuriated by Iranian financial and propaganda support to
Turkish islamist organisations and personalities, as they did for the former
Rifah Party and a female Islamist MP who was expelled from parliament and
stripped of her citizenship after refusing to take off her Islamic headscarf
while swearing in.

In turn, Iran reacted sharply to statements by Turkish officials public
for the Iranian students who staged pro-democracy demonstrations in Tehran and
chanting slogans against the regime’s top leader, the ayatollah Ali

Driven partly by their conflicting interests in, the two countries are backing
opposite sides in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia over
Nagorno-Karabakh, with Iran assisting Christian Armenia while Turkey helping
the dominantly Shi’a Azerbaijan.


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 15:08:09 -0400
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: fwd: Iran makes a big splash in Robocup 99!

baa salaam,

The Computer Engineering team from Sharif University of Technology, Tehran
(Team "Sharif CE") has made a big name for itself in the annual Robocup
competitions (Robocup'99), currently being held in Sweden.

This inter-university competition consists of robots playing soccer
against each other.

Here are the result by Sharif CE so far:

Sharif CE 2 CoPS Stuttgart 1
Sharif CE 10 University of Southern California dramteam 0
Sharif CE 4 Patriarcas (Minho) 0
Sharif CE 1 Agilo (Munich) 2

For more information you may look at :

under the "Middle Size League".

You may send a note of encouragement and thanks to the team leader Dr.
Mansour Jamzad:, and the key driver of this
project at Sharif's computer science department Dr. Rasoul Jalili:

The Open Research Network, a non-profit organization, is helping the
progress of this project. If you would like to help this effort in any
way, you can contact us at


The Open Research Network


Date: Mon, 2 Aug 1999 21:25:19 +0100
From: "a.abdi" <a.abdi@BTINTERNET.COM>
Subject: The latest statement by Peyman, Yazdi, Sahabi, Moinfar

Please read the latest statement by Peyman, Yazdi, Sahabi, Moinfar.



End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 30 Jul 1999 to 2 Aug 1999