Mullah Regime 14
The directive by Iran s Supreme Cyberspace Council to require social messaging apps to start storing user data in Iran within a year was the result of a majority vote by people directly appointed to the body by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, a source told the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran. Iranian officials have previously made several unsuccessful attempts to convince the owners of social messaging apps to move their servers to Iran, but the Council s directive is the first instance of a government agency trying to force the demand.
Iran s government admits that the country will face a serious water crisis this summer, putting 37 million people at risk of dehydration over the summer. The water issues are already harming stability, as Iranian farmers began protesting over water rights earlier this month, according to the Iranian branch of the American-funded Radio Liberty.
An Iranian court has sentenced a well-known tycoon to death for corruption linked to oil sales during the rule of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the judiciary spokesman said Sunday. Babak Zanjani and two of his associates were sentenced to death for “money laundering,” among other charges, Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejehi said in brief remarks broadcast on state TV. He did not identify the two associates. Previous state media reports have said the three were charged with forgery and fraud.
Iranian officials have reportedly seized thousands of cars from women who were deemed to be driving without their hair properly covered. Rules which made headlines around the world a few months ago require women to wear headscarves at all times while driving, or risk being pulled over. According to the AFP News Agency, more than 40,000 “cases of bad hijab” since March.
A group of Iranian clerics is examining potential candidates to be the next Supreme Leader, former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has said, breaking a taboo of talking publicly about succession in the Islamic republic. Moderate president Hassan Rouhani and his allies are hoping to cash in on the popularity they have gained by striking a nuclear deal with world powers that could see sanctions lifted to win the majority of seats in the assembly and a parliamentary election that will be held on the same day.
Don’t look now but Iran s civil society is on fire. In recent weeks dissidents, ethnic minorities, and political activists have presented a formidable challenge to the claim that the Nuclear Deal with Iran would benefit human rights and political reform. Their presence is also a sharp critique towards the facade of reform projected by Hassan Rouhani.
An Iranian court has sentenced Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian to a prison term, the state news agency said on Sunday, quoting the judiciary spokesman in a case that is a sensitive issue in contentious U.S.-Iranian relations. The length of the prison term was not specified. “Serving a jail term is in Jason Rezaian’s sentence but I cannot give details,” judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei told a weekly news conference in Tehran, according to IRNA.
Iran’s president publicly criticized its hard-line media on Sunday, hinting that some outlets are connected to the security forces responsible for a wave of recent arrests in the country aimed at crippling Western influence. President Hassan Rouhani, in a speech broadcast live, accused some outlets of acting as “undercover police” and said that they even tell their audience who is going to be arrested tomorrow.” Since Ayatollah Khamenei’s speeches began, five activists and journalists have been arrested, with a member of the intelligence unit of the Revolutionary Guards Corps explaining on state television that they are accused of being pens for hire and that they had been working – some unwittingly – for the Central Intelligence Agency.
Iranian President Hassan Rohani has criticized a recent wave of arrests carried out by the intelligence branch of the powerful Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC). The arrests appear to be a backlash against Iran’s landmark nuclear agreement reached with world powers in July, as well as part of hard-liners’ efforts to stifle the political atmosphere ahead of national elections early next year. While Rohani and his ministers have expressed a desire for better ties with the West, hard-liners have made it clear that the deal should not result in a rapprochement with the United States.
This summer, 28-year-old artist Atena Farghadani drew a cartoon in response to legislation restricting birth control and the ability of a married woman to initiate a divorce. The drawing depicted Iranian parliamentary leaders with monkey and bull heads — mild stuff by U.S. or European cartooning standards. She posted it on Facebook and was jailed, and then sentenced to 12 years and 9 months in prison for “insulting members of parliament through paintings.”