Subject: DNI-NEWS Digest - 24 Dec 1999 to 25 Dec 1999

There are 9 messages totalling 352 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. New web page with some interesting information on
2. Iran court sentences two students to death
3. FWD: IRIB Forgets to Air a Question
4. Iran paper says two more students condemned to die over July riots
5. Irna: bahonar announces new coalition's programs for majlis elections
6. SOCCER-Iran to play in US after controls eased
7. Iran MP wants women freed from traditional taboos
8. Iran flogs two for smoking in public
9. Iran Cleric Wants To Curb Press

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 13:08:21 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: New web page with some interesting information on

bA salAm,
Jebhe Melli Iran, New York Chapter has a web page at
http://www.jebhemelli.net which is under construction for the moment, but
you can find some interesting audio files of Arash Foruhar and Dr. Karim
Lahiji's speach at the aniversary program for the memory of victims of
political assasination of activist and writers in Iran during the last
year, in Colombia University in November 99.

You can also find a short vide of the funeral of Foruhar's in Tehran as well.

Specially listen to Dr. Lahiji's speach, it is really amazing, this guy
analyzed the whole history from the beggining till that day, what IRI
officials said and did, and what he (as Foruhar family's authorney) has
done. I realy recomend it.
(you can directly go to that address instead of searching through INF's
homepage the address is: http://www.jebhemelli.net/events/99/november)

bA ehterAm,
Farhad A.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:08:27 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran court sentences two students to death

TEHRAN, Dec 25 (Reuters) - An Iranian court has sentenced two students to
death for their role in a social unrest in Tehran in July, a newspaper
reported on Saturday.

The daily Fath quoted a student group as saying that Akbar Mohammadi and
Ahmad Batebi had been convicted by the court as ``Mohareb,'' or someone
who makes war on Islam, a charge punishable by death under Islamic sharia
law.

The Supreme Court has confirmed the death sentence on Mohammadi, the group
said.

No official confirmation of the report was available.

Mohammadi was charged with using petrol bombs during the riots which broke
out when police and armed vigilantes attacked students after a peaceful
pro-democracy demonstration, the paper said.

Batebi was convicted of endangering national security and promoting
anti-government propaganda when he displayed a bloody shirt during the
riots. Photographs of Batebi holding up the shirt were widely used in
Western media.

The six-day unrest in Tehran and several other cities was the worst in
Iran since the aftermath of the 1979 revolution.

Around 1,500 pro-democracy students were arrested in Tehran and the
northwestern city of Tabriz.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:10:33 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: FWD: IRIB Forgets to Air a Question

(I got this from Iran Daneshjo, havn't checked it myself)/Farhad
IRIB Forgets to Air a Question

Fath
12/25/1999

The IRIB censored parts of Rafsanjani's recent press conference for no
good reason, including the questions posed by the Fath reporter, the daily
wrote.

The question asked by Fath: " Why, unlike President Khatami, you did not
follow up on the serial killings which happened during your presidency?

Do you think you should not be held accountable for those murders? "

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:08:41 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran paper says two more students condemned to die over July riots

TEHRAN, Dec 25 (AFP) - Two more Iranian students have been sentenced to
death over July's bloody unrest, one of them because he showed
international media the blood-soaked shirt of a beaten colleague, a
newspaper said Saturday.
The moderate Fath paper cited a student group saying Akbar Mohammadi had
been condemned to death for throwing petrol bombs during the riots.

Meanwhile it said Ahmad Batabi was ordered to die for "endangering
national security" -- he was photographed displaying a blood-stained
T-shirt and the picture was widely used in Western media coverage of the
unrest.

There was no immediate official confirmation of the death sentences.

Tehran and provincial cities were wracked by the worst unrest here since
the aftermath of the 1979 Islamic revolution in July after students
protesting the court-ordered closure of a moderate paper were attacked by
police and Islamic militants.

Revolutionary court chief Gholamhossein Rahbarpur said last month that the
death sentences on three alleged ringleaders of the unrest in Tehran had
been upheld.

Some 1,500 people were arrested in connection with the disturbances. About
500 have been cleared while most of the rest are still under investigation.

Last month five students in provincial capital Tabriz got sentences of
between eight months and eight years while student leader Manushehr
Mohammadi, whose "confession" was broadcast on state television, got a
13-year jail term.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:12:15 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Irna: bahonar announces new coalition's programs for majlis elections

thr 043
elections-bahonar
bahonar announces new coalition's programs for majlis elections
tehran, dec. 25, irna -- the coalition of the followers of the
path of late imam khomeini and leadership would announce its
candidates from all constituencies nationwide for sixth majlis
elections, said spokesman of the coalition mohammad-reza bahonar
here on saturday.
bahonar told iranian and foreign reporters that the goal behind
establishment of the new coalition was to bring about coordination
among all groups, who believe in islam, the islamic republic and the
path of the late imam khomeini and supreme leader of the islamic
revolution ayatollah ali khamenei.
he said the coalition strives for guaranteeing all the freedoms
and rights of iranian citizens envisioned in the constitution, he
added.
bahonar said a number of political parties and professional
associations such as the islamic society of engineers, islamic
association of physicians, islamic coalition society, women
society of the islamic revolution, the association of women following
ahl-ul-bait (prophet mohammad's infallible household) and islamic
society of women have joined the coalition. he said the coalition
has entered into negotiations with many other political groupings.
he stressed that his coalition believed that factional
and political disputes have reached to an intolerable point to the
effect that people feel many of the conflicts triggered by lack
of understanding, are unnecessary and can be solved through dialogue.
bahonar expressed the hope that the sixth majlis would be formed
free from any factional conflicts and tension and unnecessary
factional rows and would help resolve people's basic problems,
including price hike, unemployment and social and individual security.
as for the coalition's list of candidates, bahonar said that it
has preapred a list of 25 candidates, topped by the expediency
council chairman, ayatollah akbar hashemi rafsanjani, for tehran
constituency.
the coalition has reached complete consensus on more than 150
candidates nationwide, said bahonar, adding that as for other
candidates the coalition is busy holding talks.
asked about his goals in case of winning upcoming elections,
bahonar said that from the coalition's point of view political
development should not take place at the expense of economic
development or vice versa. development in political, economic
and cultural dimensions should go along with each other and be
balanced so as to insure sustainable development, he added.
elsewhere in the interview, bahonar called on all officials in
charge of investigating the case of serial murders in tehran last
year, as well as the president, the supreme national security council
and the relevant court to reach a final decision on the case
and refer it to the court so as to clarify the fate of those
involved in the serial murders.
on candidacy of abdullah nouri, the managing director of the
banned daily 'khordad', for the next majlis elections, bahonar said
his registration does not run counter to the law and the executive and
supervisory boards are responsible for confirming his eligibility.
bg/rr
end
::irna 25/12/99 17:43

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:14:44 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: SOCCER-Iran to play in US after controls eased

SOCCER-Iran to play in US after controls eased 09:38 a.m. Dec 24, 1999
Eastern

TEHRAN, Dec 24 (Reuters) - Iran said on Friday it had agreed to play a
friendly soccer match in the United States after receiving assurances
that players would not be fingerprinted upon arrival, a procedure Tehran
has denounced as offensive.

The match would mark the first time the U.S. has played host to an
Iranian sports team since the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Iran's official IRNA news agency quoted soccer federation head Mohsen
Safaei-Farahani as saying that ``American soccer federation officials
have accepted all of the conditions requested by Iran...and there is no
problem for this trip to take place.''

Iran said last week it would make the trip only if U.S. officials waived
the fingerprinting requirement.

``We again informed them of our conditions for ease in obtaining visas
and the removal of the fingerprinting formality...which the American
officials have accepted,'' Safaei-Farahani told IRNA.

He was speaking in Iran's Gulf island of Kish, site of the Iranian
team's training camp.

Tehran has often protested to Washington over the photographing and
fingerprinting of Iranian sportsmen and scholars travelling to the
United States.

U.S. officials say the procedure is standard for nationals of Iran,
Sudan and other countries accused by Washington of links to Islamic
guerrillas, charges which Iran denies.

The game, on January 16 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California, would
be a rematch of the 1998 World Cup encounter in France, won by Iran 2-1.

That politically-charged match, for which both teams were later given
the FIFA Fair Play Award, was the first top-level sporting contact
between the countries since they broke diplomatic ties after the
revolution which toppled U.S.-backed Shah Mohamm ad Reza Pahlavi.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:12:56 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran MP wants women freed from traditional taboos

Iran MP wants women freed from traditional taboos 10:27 a.m. Dec 22,
1999 Eastern

TEHRAN, Dec 22 (Reuters) - A daughter of former President Akbar Hashemi
Rafsanjani has urged Iranian women to overcome the stigma of proposing
marriage to a man.

Newspapers on Wednesday also quoted Faezeh Hashemi, a leading reformist
parliamentarian, as calling for more freedom of dress and behaviour for
women in the Islamic society.

``There is no shame about a girl proposing marriage to a boy. Why should
a girl sit at home and wait for a male suitor to knock on her door one
day?'' Hashemi said in a meeting with students.

``I would not stop my 16-year-old daughter from proposing marriage to a
boy,'' said the MP, a leading advocate of women's equality with men in
Iran.

Hashemi also said women should be allowed to wear suits in public,
rather than the black chador or long robe and scarf mandatory in Iran
since the 1979 Islamic revolution. In public, she is always dressed in
the all-encompassing black chador.

Hashemi also reiterated a demand for women to be allowed to ride
bicycles in public. ``I myself ride the bike late at night. I would have
ridden my bike if it did not take too long to get here.''

Her outspoken views have angered hardline Islamists opposed to changing
the traditional status of women.

Earlier this year, a court closed her pro-reform newspaper Zan (Woman)
on charges that included criticising alleged discrimination against
women in Islam.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:15:56 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran flogs two for smoking in public

Iran flogs two for smoking in public 04:11 a.m. Dec 25, 1999 Eastern

TEHRAN, Dec 25 (Reuters) - Two Iranian men have been flogged in Tehran
for smoking in public during the Moslem fasting month of Ramadan, a
newspaper reported on Saturday.

The men received 10 lashes each on Friday after a court convicted them
of smoking in the lobby of a judiciary building hours earlier, the daily
Entekhab said.

Iran's Islamic laws forbid eating, drinking or smoking in public from
dawn until sunset, the period of fasting during Ramadan.

Date: Sat, 25 Dec 1999 19:15:24 -0500
From: Farhad Abdolian <farhad@PANJERE.NET>
Subject: Iran Cleric Wants To Curb Press

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - The government should curb the press before its
``unlimited'' freedom had serious consequences, a leading hard-line
cleric in Iran said Friday.

``Stop this trend of insults. We have to do something to stop it, not
just talk about stopping it,'' Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi told worshippers
at the traditional Friday prayers sermon at Tehran University.

Yazdi, who headed the judiciary until August, said Iran's supreme
leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, had expressed concern over the press's
freedom. He urged President Mohammad Khatami to address those concerns.

``I'd like to say something to the president and the culture minister.
If this trend goes on like this, and no serious measure is taken, then
it's not clear where it will end, but I think it will not be a good
ending,'' he said.

Khatami has been applauded by liberals for allowing greater freedom to
the press and for relaxing the Islamic social code since he took office
in 1997. But his reforms have provoked strong opposition from
hard-liners within the ruling hierarchy.

``Our people will not just watch and tolerate this,'' Yazdi warned.
``Our people are alive. Some will write that (what I am saying) is a
threat, but it is not.''

As chief of the judiciary, Yazdi presided over a crackdown on liberal
newspapers and prosecutions of Khatami allies. He was criticized for
such moves and removed from the judiciary in August after 10 years in
the top job. His dismissal was a key demand of the students who took
part in week-long protests of July, the worst unrest seen in Iran since
the 1979 Islamic revolution.

Yazdi was succeeded by Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi, who has
since attempted to reform the judiciary by appointing moderates to key
posts.

End of DNI-NEWS Digest - 24 Dec 1999 to 25 Dec 1999