Top UN Court To Rule In Iran-US Dispute Over Frozen Assets


Top UN Court To Rule In Iran-US Dispute Over Frozen Assets | Associated Press 

The United Nations’ highest court is set to rule Thursday in a case filed by Iran against the United States over frozen Iranian assets worth some $2 billion that the U.S. Supreme Court awarded to victims of a 1983 bombing in Lebanon and other attacks linked to Tehran. At hearings last year, lawyers representing the U.S. urged the International Court of Justice to reject the claim. Iran cast the asset freeze as an attempt to destabilize the Tehran government and a violation of international law. Iran took its claim to the world court in 2016 after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that money belonging to Iran’s central bank could be used as compensation for the 241 American troops who died in the 1983 bombing, which was believed to be linked to Tehran.  

Iranian Foreign Minister In Moscow For Nuclear Deal Talks | The National 

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian has arrived in Russia to hold talks with the country's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov over efforts to revive the 2015 nuclear deal. The agreement, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, aimed to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions, in exchange for sanctions relief. It collapsed when the US, under president Donald Trump, withdrew in 2018, with efforts to revive the agreement proving unsuccessful so far. “The window of dialogue is still open and one of the topics of the conversation with Mr Lavrov is the JCPOA and the return of parties to their commitments,” Mr Amirabdollahian said in Moscow on Tuesday.  

Azerbaijani Student Reported Missing In Iran | Voice Of America  

An Azerbaijani student studying in Germany has disappeared after traveling to Iran to meet his girlfriend, according to his family. Farid Safarli’s mother, who is currently in Iran searching for him, told VOA that Iranian law enforcement agencies have not given her any information about him. "There was no information about Farid in the system of law enforcement agencies. Some agencies even refused to check the system,” Dilara Asgarova told VOA. 


Falsely Flagged Vessels Pose ‘Grave Threat’ To Global Maritime Rules | TradeWinds 

The 299,000-dwt Roma (built 2000) loaded crude from Kharg Island, Iran, with its AIS transponder turned on, according to United Against Nuclear Iran, which tracks tankers that breach US sanctions on Iran. It said foreign-flag vessels typically turn off their AIS to disguise where they are loading to avoid potential legal and financial problems with the US authorities. 


Iran May Set Deadline For Nuclear Talks, Says Fm Amir-Abdollahian | Al Jazeera 

Iran may set a legal deadline for deadlocked talks aimed at restoring its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, the country’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian has suggested to Al Jazeera in an exclusive interview. The move could happen through the parliament as some politicians in Tehran are growing increasingly impatient with the unending talks, Amir-Abdollahian. “In the parliament, there is this idea that the government should not perennially be in a path of negotiations to bring all parties back to the JCPOA,” he said referring to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the accord that the United States unilaterally abandoned in 2018. According to Amir-Abdollahian, some factions of Iran’s parliament are pushing for proposals and legislation that could make the government’s work “more difficult” in continuing the talks.  


Iran Faces Uphill Battle In Push To Revive LNG Export Projects | Natural Gas Intelligence  

Iran, the world’s third largest gas producer, shares the giant North Dome/South Pars field with Qatar, but it has fallen far behind in developing its reserves to meet domestic and international gas demand. “If you compare Iran with neighboring Qatar, a top LNG exporter, sharing the same huge gas reserve, you question why Iran is so far behind in developing its gas assets,” said Alex Vatanka, director of the Iran program at the Washington-based Middle East Institute. The government made a decision in the 1990s that pipelines were the future for gas exports and determined liquefied natural gas projects were considered too expensive, Vatanka told NGI.  


The Farda Briefing: Iran's Hard-Liners Propose Tougher Measures To Enforce Hijab Law | Radio Free Europe   

Hard-line lawmakers in Iran have proposed new tougher measures to enforce the country's hijab law. The proposed measures would impose fines of up to $60,000 on women who violate the law as well as the confiscation of their passports and driver's licenses, according to lawmaker Hossein Jalali. Another member of parliament, Bijan Nobaveh, said the proposed measures also include using surveillance cameras to monitor if women in public are wearing the compulsory hijab.  

Missing Iranian Cleric Warns Of His Possible Detention, Death | Radio Free Europe 

Four months after the disappearance of Molavi Abdul Ghaffar Naqshbandi, the Sunni imam from the Iranian city of Rask in Sistan-Baluchistan Province who disclosed the alleged rape of a 15-year-old girl by a local police commander, a video has surfaced in which he warns of the possibility that he may be "assassinated" or "apprehended." Naqshbandi disappeared after he was summoned to a court in the northeastern Iranian city of Mashhad late last year. Since attending a court session in December, his whereabouts have been unknown and his family says they have no information on where he might be detained.  


Top US General Says Increased Partnership Between Iran, Russia, And China Will Make Them ‘Problematic’ For ‘Years To Come’ | CNN 

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley told lawmakers Wednesday that China, Russia, and Iran would be a problem for the US “for many years to come” as the three are working more closely together. Speaking before the House Armed Services Committee alongside Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Milley said Russia and China are “getting closer together.” “I wouldn’t call it a true full alliance in the real meaning of that word, but we are seeing them moving closer together, and that’s troublesome,” Milley said. “And then … Iran is the third. So those three countries together are going to be problematic for many years to come I think, especially Russia and China because of their capability.”  

Top US General Advocates Targeting Iran’s IRGC Quds Force After Syria Drone Attack | Al Monitor 

The Pentagon’s top general publicly advocated a more forceful US response targeting the Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps after a spate of attacks on US bases in Syria last week. US Army Gen. Mark Milley told members of Congress on Tuesday that the US should target the Quds Force “harshly” in order to deter future rocket and drone attacks by Iran-backed militias on US troops in Syria and Iraq. “Some of these groups are much more aggressive than others,” Milley told members of the Senate’s Armed Services committee during a hearing.  


Iran's Foreign Ministry Is Side-Lined, Ex-Diplomats Say | Iran International  

Senior Iranian regime officials are trying to dismiss criticism that the foreign ministry is not up to the job, after other top officials went on diplomatic missions. National security council secretary Ali Shamkhani was the first official tasked by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to travel to China in early March and sign an agreement with Saudi Arabia to restore diplomatic relations. This was followed by Khamenei’s foreign policy advisor Kamal Kharrazi and former nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi traveling to Syria and Lebanon last week. These missions did not escape the attention of local commentators who noted the absence of the foreign ministry in these high-level diplomatic initiatives.  


Biden Administration Has Only Launched Four ‘Major Responses’ To Iranian-Backed Attacks On U.S. Forces, Austin Says | Jewish Insider 

Top military leaders revealed yesterday that U.S. forces have launched just four “major responses” to 83 attacks on U.S. forces by Iranian proxies in Iraq and Syria during the Biden administration’s tenure. Lawmakers questioned Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley yesterday about the U.S. strategy for responding to repeated Iranian-backed attacks on U.S. forces inside Syria; the line of questioning came in the wake of attacks last week that killed a U.S. contractor and injured other U.S. service members, prompting a retaliatory strike by the U.S. on Iran-backed forces.“Our troops have the ability to, certainly, protect themselves and there have been responses — local responses to certain types of activity. Our troops always have the ability to do that,” Austin said. “In terms of major responses — strikes… there’s only been four of those.”