Iran has deployed mounted police in a bid to contain more than seven weeks of protests sparked by the death in custody of Mahsa Amini, according to videos posted online. The clerical state has been rocked by a protest movement that erupted when Amini, 22, died after her arrest for allegedly breaking Iran's strict hijab dress rules for women. Young women have led the way, removing and burning their head coverings, chanting anti-regime slogans and confronting security forces on the street despite a crackdown that has killed more than 300 people, according to Norway based monitoring group.
Even as Ukrainian officials celebrate the arrival of more advanced Western air-defense systems and claim growing success at shooting down Russian rockets and drones, they are warning that Moscow is on the hunt for new long-range weapons against which Kyiv’s forces have little defense — specifically, ballistic missiles from Iran. A spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force said the Kremlin had plans to buy Fateh-110 and Zolfaghar ballistic missiles from Iran, which the Ukrainians say will almost certainly be used to continue to target civilian energy infrastructure that has already been battered by barrages of attacks in recent weeks.
At least two fuel trucks were destroyed in an air strike by an unidentified drone on the Syrian side of the border with Iraq late on Tuesday, Iraqi security and border officials told Reuters. The strike was carried out by a drone and targeted a tanker truck convoy carrying Iranian fuel that had entered Qaim border crossing into Syria, the officials said. "No Iraqi casualties have been reported", said an Iraqi border police officer. Huge blaze was seen on the Syrian side of the border, said a security official. The convoy included more than 20 tanker trucks.
UANI IN THE NEWS
De Amerikaanse organisatie United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) noemt de gelijktijdige zakelijke relaties van grootaandeelhouder Willem Blijdorp van B&S Group met Iran en de Verenigde Staten 'een duidelijke schending van de Iran-sancties’ van de internationale gemeenschap. Dit zegt onderzoeksdirecteur Daniel Roth van UANI tegen het FD. Roth reageert op de onthulling door het FD woensdag dat Blijdorp afgelopen jaren minstens negen medewerkers en leidinggevenden van zijn beursgenoteerde groothandel B&S BSGR:€4,99-7,25% inschakelde bij zijn investeringen van €75 mln in negen Iraanse marmermijnen. B&S, waarin Blijdorp 67% van de aandelen bezit, is ook leverancier aan het Amerikaanse leger. Iran en de VS zijn aartsvijanden van elkaar.
… "Taken Hostage" also explores the backstory of how America became mired in the Middle East and the nation’s role in igniting the firestorm that has consumed the most strategically important part of the world for the last 40 years. The film is told largely through the lens of the exceptional love story of former hostage Barry Rosen and his wife Barbara, who was suddenly thrust into the public eye as the crisis dragged on.
SANCTIONS, BUSINESS RISKS, & OTHER ECONOMIC NEWS
As India’s oil and gas demand continues to grow, the South Asian country is looking to any supplier offering a low-cost product, regardless of how controversial they may be. India’s refiners are diversifying their supply, in response to recent OPEC oil quota cuts, and turning to sanctioned states, such as Russia and Iran, to ensure their crude supply. With little support from the West to support the country’s burgeoning renewable energy industry, India’s partnership with controversial oil suppliers is likely to continue. In October, India announced it would be speeding up the diversification of oil imports to mitigate the risk of potential OPEC+ oil cuts.
PROTESTS & HUMAN RIGHTS
After numerous calls for harsh punishments in recent days, the Iranian parliament on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly in favor of the death penalty for protesters. Iran has been experiencing unprecedented levels of protests and civil unrest since the death of Mahsa Amini on September 16. The 22-year-old Kurdish woman was arrested by the country's "morality police" for supposedly wearing an "improper" form of hijab during a visit to Tehran and allegedly beaten severely while in custody. The beatings are believed to have led to her death from a fatal head injury, but Iranian authorities have denied the accusation.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have arrested prominent lawyer Mostafa Nili, one of more than a dozen rounded up amid a crackdown on protests sparked by Mahsa Amini’s death, his sister said. Guards intelligence agents detained Nili at Tehran’s Mehrabad international airport on Monday night before raiding his mother’s house and taking him into custody, Fatemeh Nili tweeted. Another prominent lawyer, Saeid Dehghan, who is believed to be abroad, confirmed his arrest in a post on Twitter.
Below the streets of Iran’s capital, a quiet but powerful protest movement is unfolding. Across the carriages and platforms of the Tehran Metro, small acts of resistance are everywhere, mirroring the widespread demonstrations that are taking place in the country’s streets, as people demand greater freedom and rights for women. Here, protest slogans plaster subway walls, and anti-government chants ring out through the tunnels. Some 3 million people in the mega-city’s population of 14 million take the metro every day, and with a smaller police presence, women feel more free to reject the country’s strict dress code around wearing headscarves.
U.S.-IRAN RELATIONS & NEGOTIATIONS
President Joe Biden recently appeared to break from America’s stance not to call for regime change in Iran when he said, "We’re going to free Iran." His remarks to an audience in Los Angeles last Thursday were soon qualified by John Kirby, the National Security Council strategic communications coordinator, who noted that Biden was "expressing, again, our solidarity" with Iranian protesters and not outlining a new approach. Since protests began in Iran immediately following the Sept. 16 death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was arrested by the country’s morality police on Sept. 13 for not wearing a hijab, more than 300 deaths have been reported.
IRANIAN INTERNAL DEVELOPMENTS
The Iranian leadership is resisting growing demands from clerics and some reformist politicians to stage a new referendum on Iran’s constitution as hardline parliamentarians meanwhile insist the only response to the recent unrest sweeping the country is for violent protesters to be executed. The power struggle among the country’s rulers appears to leave the government sending out mixed messages on how to respond to the protests, but in practice the security forces have gone ahead with a severe crackdown and arrested nearly 10,000 people, including 60 journalists.
RUSSIA, SYRIA, ISRAEL, HEZBOLLAH, LEBANON & IRAN
Unidentified aircraft targeted sites belonging to Iranian militias along the border between Iraq and Syria on Tuesday night, according to Arabic-language media. The strikes were first reported by the Iraqi Sabareen news channel which is affiliated with militias backed by Iran. The channel blamed the US for carrying out the strikes near the Al-Qaim border crossing and claimed that 25 people were killed. Sabareen and additional news sites reported that fuel tankers carrying Iranian gasoline for Lebanon were hit.
GULF STATES, YEMEN, & IRAN
Russia’s special presidential representative for the Middle East and African countries said Moscow is ready to play the role of a mediator between Tehran and Riyadh if they need it. “Of course, we keep in touch with both our Saudi friends and Iranian friends,” Mikhail Bogdanov told the media on Tuesday, when asked whether Moscow was in contact with Riyadh and Tehran. “And, of course, we are for resolving all misunderstandings and contradictions within the framework of a constructive dialogue at the negotiating table. We have always been ready and are really exerting efforts to play a certain mediating role, if this is requested by our friends in Riyadh and Tehran,” he added.
IRAQ & IRAN
Mohammad Bagheri, Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps military commander, held a phone call on Tuesday with Thabet Muhammad Al-Abasi, Iraq’s minister of defense, to discuss security issues. During a telephonic conversation, the Iranian commander demonstrates his support for Iraqi counter-terrorism forces, and stressed that both countries must share military information with each other. “Iranian security forces have a great experience in combating terrorists, they can share their experience with Iraq’s counter-terrorism forces,” Bagheri said in a telephonic conversation.