Sunday, January 29, 2006

Iran says "No" to foreign meddling in Darfur, Sudan

Today, Coaliton for Darfur publishes BBC Monitoring's text [no date] of a report by Sudanese newspaper Alwan claiming Iran says "No" to foreign meddling in Darfur. Excerpt:
"The Vice-President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Dr Ahmad al-Musawi, has said he cast doubts on the enemies' intentions towards the Darfur region.

In a press conference held at the Hilton hotel [in Khartoum] yesterday morning, he urged to end foreign interference in Darfur and let the Sudanese government work towards resolving the issue in a suitable way.

He further reiterated Iran's support for a Sudanese solution in this regard, and his trust in the mediation of the AU member states to resolve the crisis."
See Sudan Watch (in sidebar here).

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Sudan backs Iran's peaceful use of nuclear energy

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on Wednesday pledged his country’s support for Iran’s position on peaceful use of nuclear technology.

Iranian Deputy President Ahmed Moussawi, who arrived in Khartoum earlier Wednesday on an official visit to Sudan, delivered a letter to the Sudanese president from his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmedinejad concerning the position of the Iranian authority toward its nuclear file and its right topeaceful use of nuclear energy, the Sudanese news agency reported.

See full report by Xinhua at SudanTribune 26 January 2006.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Bombing in south west Iran - Amarji, A Heretic's Blog

Amarji - A Heretic's Blog by Syrian author Ammar Abdulhamid located in Maryland, USA.

[via Captain Marlow's post on Iran and Syria and bombing in south west Iran]

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Iran: Blogger gets three-year suspended sentence

From Global Voices by Haitham Sabbah, January 20, 2006:
Journalist and blogger Ahmad Reza Shiri (Persian) will have a permanent threat hanging over him as a result of the suspended sentence (used to silence journalists who bother the authorities) of three years in prison handed down by a court in the northern city of Mashhad, Reporters Without Borders said today. He was reportedly accused of writing articles in his blog calling for a boycott of last February’s legislative elections.

China and Russia would fight Iran oil sanctions

Reuters report Jan 19, 2006 says U.N. Security Council heavyweights China and Russia have too much riding on Iran's energy sector to let the West slap sanctions on Tehran to punish its nuclear ambitions, experts say. Excerpt:

Fears of supply disruption from the world's fourth largest crude exporter, along with rising tensions in fellow OPEC member Nigeria, sent U.S. crude oil futures to a three-month high near $67 per barrel this week.

The United States and three European Union nations are pressing the 15-member U.N. Security Council to take up the Iranian nuclear issue, which could open the door to potential oil sanctions.

But two key U.N. Security Council members that carry veto powers -- China and Russia -- have multibillion-dollar oil and natural gas projects hanging in the balance, and China depends on Iran's imports to quench its oil thirst.

"I have a hard time seeing how oil investments could be targeted given the interests of Russia and China," said Julia Nanay, a senior director at PFC Energy in Washington.

Iran wants to sign a major oilfield deal to give China's Sinopec a stake in the giant Yadavaran oilfield in southern Iran, which could require investment of at least $2 billion (1.1 billion pounds).

And Russia's LUKOIL holds a minority stake in the Anaran field in western Iran near the Iraqi border.

Iran raised the stakes in its row with the West this month by removing U.N. seals on equipment that purifies uranium, which can be used for power, or if highly enriched, in bombs.

The United States and the European Union's three biggest powers said talks with Iran on the issue were at a dead end, and moved to refer the matter to the Security Council.

Tehran denies accusations it is seeking nuclear weapons and says it needs nuclear technology to generate electricity.

China has blocked Security Council efforts to sanction countries like Sudan, where China has a huge oil deal. Sudan's Darfur region is beset by widespread violence between fractious rebel groups, government forces and a government-backed militia.

Full story.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Iran nuclear stand-off escalates

Iran has broken the international seals at the Natanz plant.

Iran's dispute with the UN and Western countries has deepened after Tehran resumed nuclear research.

As Iran removed UN seals from equipment at Natanz facility, UN nuclear chief Mohamed ElBaradei said Tehran would start small-scale nuclear enrichment.

The move was condemned by the US and European countries, which fear Iran is seeking to produce atomic bombs.

Tehran denies the accusation, saying it wants to produce nuclear energy only.

Full story BBC 10 Jan 2006.