U.S. President Donald Trump said on Thursday that he expects Iran "at some point" to ask the United States for a deal… "Iran at some point will call me and ask for a deal, and we'll make a deal," he said.
German prosecutors have charged an Iranian diplomat with conspiracy to murder after counterterrorism officials say they averted a planned terrorist attack near Paris last month. .. [Roule]: “Europe’s response should be collective, much as it was in the wake of Moscow’s use of chemical weapons to assassinate a dissident in England. At the very least, Europe should expel Iran’s ambassadors from Austria, Belgium, France, and Germany.”
Japanese banks are moving to stop handling all Iran-related transactions to meet a November deadline set by the United States, after President Donald Trump in May pulled out of a nuclear program agreement with Tehran.
SANCTIONS, BUSINESS RISKS, & OTHER ECONOMIC NEWS
The United States and the United Arab Emirates have broken up a network funneling illicit funds to Iran as Washington steps up a drive to restrict Iranian trade and access to hard currency in the region, a senior U.S. official said on Thursday.
A top U.S. official focused on sanctions against Iran on Thursday linked American financial pressure on Tehran with ongoing economic protests roiling the country, saying she hoped the strain would limit the Islamic Republic’s “malign activities” across the Mideast.
U.S. crude oil exports to India hit a record in June and so far this year are almost double last year’s total as the Asian nation’s refiners move to replace supplies from Iran and Venezuela in a win for the Trump administration.
The commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said last week that Tehran would block all exports through the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf if countries heed U.S. calls to stop buying Iranian oil from November. A fifth of global oil consumption passes through the Strait from Middle East crude producers to major markets.
France’s PSA Group said its global sales had continued to grow in the first half despite its withdrawal from Iran, a major market for the maker of Peugeot and Citroen cars.
Some of the United States’ closest allies are scrambling to find a way around the latest sanctions of the Trump Administration against Tehran, and Washington may have to revise its goal of reducing Iranian oil exports to zero.
PROTESTS & HUMAN RIGHTS
Amnesty International is denouncing Iran for the public flogging of a young man whose alleged crime was having consumed alcohol at a wedding when he was 14 or 15 years old.
[S]exuality — especially of the female variety — is this regime’s Achilles’ heel (and always has been). Controlling it has been an obsession since the Islamic republic came into power in 1979. And now the establishment is obviously losing that 40-year war of attrition.
For millennials in Iran, what might seem like a simple “photo app” has become a political weapon.
MILITARY/INTELLIGENCE MATTERS & PROXY WARS
When it comes to covert operations against Iran, various options have been explored and employed over the decades, to assist in thwarting Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons. While many within the US administration feel that acts of sabotage against Iran’s nuclear program are feasible, there are others that are still very much against such action, feeling that any form of military intervention could quite easily get out of hand.
CONGRESS & IRAN
Congress is seeking to weaponize US-funded Persian-language news programs, opening a new front in the Donald Trump administration’s confrontation with Tehran.
GULF STATES, YEMEN, RUSSIA, SYRIA, ISRAEL, HEZBOLLAH, LEBANON & IRAN
Russian President Vladimir Putin met Ali Akbar Velayati, a top adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on Thursday in Moscow, RIA news agency reported, without providing any details. Velayati hailed Iran’s ties with Russia on Wednesday as “strategic” and said he would deliver messages to Putin from Khamenei and Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Russia on Wednesday that Israel does not intend to threaten Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s rule and asked Moscow to work to remove Iranian forces from Syria, an Israeli official said. “
Russia has been working to push Iran away from Israel's border with Syria, diplomatic sources told Haaretz Wednesday evening.
Yemen’s Foreign Minister Khaled Al Yamani filed a complaint to the United Nations against Iran-backed Lebanese group Hezbollah, which has declared its support for the Houthi rebels.
In a letter sent to Lebanese Foreign Minister Gibran Bassil, Yemen’s foreign minister, Khaled Hussein al-Yamani, objected to the Lebanese-based Hezbollah backing Houthis in Yemen. The Yemeni minister called on the Lebanese government to restrain the pro-Iranian militia and its aggressive behavior, and to align its values with Lebanon’s self-proclaimed dissociation policy.