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September 28, 2016 / 25 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Iran’

Peres Interrupts Busy Schedule to Receive Pace Maker

Monday, September 5th, 2016

Former president Shimon Peres is expected to undergo surgery to implant a pace maker Monday. Peres, 93, who suffered a mild heart attack three months ago, which was followed with catheterization, will undergo the procedure at Sheba Medical Center near Tel Aviv, with partial anesthesia.

Peres continued his full schedule prior to Monday’s procedure and over the weekend participated in an economic conference on Lake Como, Italy, where he shared a panel with Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal and Wu Hongbo, Under-Secretary-General of the UN. They discussed for two and a half days global risks and their impact on business, as well as the future of the Euro. Prince Al-Faisal, a member of the Saudi royal family, talked about political risks in the Arab region.

A few years ago, Prince Al Faisal told the Daily Mail that Saudi Arabia may have to arm itself with nuclear weapons to counter threats from Iran and Israel. In 1956, Shimon Peres, in his role as Director-General of the Ministry of Defense, was responsible for acquiring a French nuclear reactor that launched Israel’s atomic program.

Small world.

Incidentally, last January, when the former president was rushed to Sheba Medical Center after complaining of chest pains, he had to cancel one of the items on his busy schedule: a visit to the Soreq Nuclear Research Center.

JNi.Media

IDF Retaliates for Syrian Mortar Attack on Israel

Monday, September 5th, 2016

IDF military forces opened fire at Syrian artillery launchers on Sunday in retaliation for a mortar attack on northern Israel earlier in the day.

The forces targeted the Syrian unit a few hours after northern Israel was shelled earlier in the day.

The central Golan Heights was struck by Syrian mortar fire near al-Furan, although it was not clear who was shelling the area.

No one was physically hurt and no property damage was reported in the attack, which a military source said was likely caused by spillover from the raging civil war.

Nevertheless, Israel holds the Syrian government responsible for all actions that take place within its borders, the IDF said in a statement.

Hana Levi Julian

Report: Obama Granted Iran Nuclear Program Secret Exemptions

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

David Albright, president of the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security, and his co-author, senior policy analyst Andrea Stricker, issued a report on Thursday saying the US and other world powers have secretly allowed Iran to exceed the nuclear deal’s limits on stockpiles of enriched uranium and other dangerous materials. Albright cited key secret exemptions which were made in secret meetings of the Joint Commission that was composed of Iran, the US, the UK, France, China, Russia, and the European Union.

Albright is a physicist who took part in UN weapons inspections in Iraq, and has been a self-appointed watchdog over the Iran nuclear deal. He has repeatedly raised doubts that the deal is being implemented honestly.

Albright’s report claims Iran would not have been able to meet its compliance requirements by January 16, 2016—the deal’s Implementation Day: “The exemptions and in one case, a loophole, involved the low enriched uranium (LEU) cap of 300 kilograms, some of the near 20 percent LEU, the heavy water cap, and the number of large hot cells allowed to remain in Iran,” the report reveals, citing a senior knowledgeable official who stated that “if the Joint Commission had not acted to create these exemptions, some of Iran’s nuclear facilities would not have been in compliance with the JCPOA by Implementation Day.”

The report also suggests “the Joint Commission allowed Iran to store large amounts of heavy water in Oman that remained under Iran’s control, effectively allowing Iran to exceed its cap of 130 tons of heavy water as it continues to produce heavy water at its Arak facility.”

“Any rationale for keeping these exemptions secret appears unjustified,” the report said, noting that “these decisions, which are written down, amount to additional secret or confidential documents linked to the JCPOA.” The report also claims that “the Joint Commission’s secretive decision-making process risks advantaging Iran by allowing it to try to systematically weaken the JCPOA. It appears to be succeeding in several key areas.”

“Given the technical complexity and public importance of the various JCPOA exemptions and loopholes, the administration’s policy to maintain secrecy interferes in the process of establishing adequate Congressional and public oversight of the JCPOA,” the report said, stressing that “this is particularly true concerning potentially agreement-weakening decisions by the Joint Commission. As a matter of policy, the United States should agree to any exemptions or loopholes in the JCPOA only if the decisions are simultaneously made public.”

State Department spokesman John Kirby said on Thursday that “the Joint Commission has not and will not loosen any of the commitments and has not provided any exceptions that would allow Iran to retain or process material In excess of its (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) limits that it could use in a breakout scenario,” adding his assurance that “there’s been no cutting of slack.”

White House spokesman Josh Earnest expressed the administration’s “significant objections” to the Albright report, assuring reporters that “Iran is in compliance with the agreement. That’s not my opinion. That’s not rhetoric. That is not a conjecture. That is a fact that is verified by independent international experts who, because of the agreement, now have the kind of access that is required to verify it.”

The Trump campaigned quickly took advantage of the report, with a statement by retired Army General Michael Flynn, a top Trump adviser, who said, “The deeply flawed nuclear deal Hillary Clinton secretly spearheaded with Iran looks worse and worse by the day. It’s now clear President Obama gave away the store to secure a weak agreement that is full of loopholes.”

Matt Brooks, Executive Director of the Republican Jewish Coalition released a statement saying,
“This latest report further confirms that the Obama Administration has consistently misled the American people on the Iran nuclear deal. First we learned about a secret side deal that allows Iran to upgrade its centrifuges, then it was the secret $400 million ransom payment, and now these secret exemptions that allow Iran to evade restrictions on their nuclear capabilities. Simply put, President Obama and his fellow Democrats have never been straightforward with the American people about Iran. It’s clear this is a dangerous and reckless deal with the largest state sponsor of terrorism, and no one who is serious about our national security could support it.”

JNi.Media

Defeat For Terror Victims, Windfall For Iran

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

American victims of Iranian terror were handed a $400 million loss with the payment of that sum to the Iranian government earlier this year. Whether it was a ransom payment for the release of hostages or, as defined by the White House, the payment of Iranian claims against the United States that was used as leverage for the hostages release, the fact of the matter is that the Obama administration has turned its back on American victims of Iranian terrorism.

My daughter Alisa, a 20-years old Brandeis University student studying in Israel, was murdered in 1995 by Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a client of the Islamic Republic of Iran that was caught red-handed funding PIJ murders. Using the provisions of a 1996 federal law, our family pursued the Iranian government for its role in the attack, and in 1998 was awarded approximately $250 million in damages.

The small feeling of victory that led me to believe we would hold Iran financially accountable was soon dashed to bits by the Clinton administration as it fought to prevent us from collecting money from the Iranians. Every time we attempted to seize an Iranian-controlled asset in this country, we were confronted by a phalanx of lawyers from the departments of Justice, State and Treasury.

Despite our courtroom losses, a number of victims’ families banded together to press the fight in the Congress and in the press. As a result we were able to convince the Clinton administration that something had to be done and President Clinton selected Jacob Lew, then director of the Office of Management and Budget, to act as a sort of mediator in the discussions between the families and the government.

Lew’s efforts were rewarded with an agreement that would allow terror victims to receive payment on a portion of their damage claims. Not wanting to take taxpayer money, I insisted that the money come from designated Iranian assets, the main one being the $400 million of Iranian money in the Foreign Military Sales Program account. Lew assured me the money would have to come through the Treasury but there was that account to reimburse the government for any payments.

With the families in agreement as to the nature of the payments and their source, President Clinton signed Public Law 106-386 on October 28, 2000. Payments were made to my family and others, and the issue of the Iranian money faded into the background until earlier this year when it was revealed that $400 million was paid to Iran. The same amount as in the FMSP account.

At this point I should be beyond being shocked at the treatment of American terror victims by our government, but I am not – as the source of money that was to be used to reimburse American taxpayers for the money I received was used for other purposes.

Notwithstanding the grandiose verbiage used by the White House and the State and Treasury departments to describe the payment and the reasons behind it, I can only view it as a sellout of American victims of Iranian terror and of the American taxpayer.

I have publicly stated that, despite what happened to Alisa, I was never opposed to the restoration of relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran. However, that restoration had a price – Iran had to account for its role in the murders of Alisa and so many others. Indeed, the statute that gave us our payments provides just for that.

No doubt, the White House and other government spokesmen will come up with more platitudes as to just what the statute means. To my mind, they can say what they want; the bottom line is that terror victims have seen their claims pushed aside by a government desperate to bring Iran to the negotiating table. Unfortunately, it’s more of a poker table, and the Iranians hold the cards.

Stephen M. Flatow

Iran ‘Not Worried’ About Falling Oil Prices

Monday, August 29th, 2016

Iranian Economy Minister Ali Tayebnia says his country has been the “least to suffer” from a recent fall in oil prices, and as a result, Tehran’s economy has been the least damaged by the decline.

“Based on newly released statistics of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Iran was the least to suffer from the fall in oil prices, and that means that Iran has lowered its vulnerability of overseas shocks in the economic domain,” Tayebnia said, according to the Iranian Oil Ministry’s SHANA news website.

The report by the IMF quoted by the Iranian finance minister said Iran had been able to “retool its economy under sanctions pressure to that inflation declined from 45 percent in 2013, to around 8 percent this year,” according to the UPI website.

Tayebnia estimated that Iran’s inflation is now hovering at around two percent, with the Central Bank of Iran estimating a growth rate in the GDP of around five percent through early 2017.

Iran is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC.) Total production for Tehran in July was at its highest level since 2014.

Hana Levi Julian

Iran Deploys S-300 Long Range Missiles at Fordow Nuclear Site

Monday, August 29th, 2016

Iran has deployed Russian-made S-300 long-range missiles in its Fordow nuclear facility, Tehran Times and other Iranian state-run media reported Sunday. State TV showed the missiles and other counter-strike weapons being transported to Fordow.

The Fordow Fuel Enrichment Plant (FFEP) is a uranium enrichment facility located 20 miles northeast of the city of Qom. The site is the second Iranian uranium enrichment facility, the other one is in Natanz. In January 2012 the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) announced that Iran had started producing uranium enriched up to 20%.

Earlier on Sunday, Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in a speech at the Khatam Al-Anbia Air Defense Base, said that “malicious, treacherous, and systematically opposing our independence” are trying to weaken Iran’s defensive capabilities, and so, in response to this threat, “air defense should be in the frontline against this enemy.”

Khamenei stated: “Human will along with indigenous capability should provide a means to thwart the enemies’ plots and they should not let enemies even entertain any encroachments of our borders and sovereignty.” He condemned the “media hype” that followed Russia’s delivery of the S300 missile systems, which he insisted are merely a defensive weapon. He rebuked the US, whose “propaganda about Fordow underground facilities … revealed the very nature of an enemy who would not recognize the right to defend our people. They would only be satisfied when we are rendered defenseless and an easy prey to their invasion,” the Ayatollah stressed.

“The Air Defense base should be armed with diverse technological innovations and techniques; the enemy should understand that if it strikes, it will definitely be stricken by a yet stronger blow, with active defense turning to active assault as well,” Khamenei concluded.

A spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), announced, also on Sunday, plans to build two more nuclear power plants in Bushehr, a city in southern Iran which already has an operational nuclear power plant, built by the Russians and completed in April 2016. The spokesman said: “We try to start construction of the next nuclear power plant in Bushehr within the next one and a half months.”

JNi.Media

Tehran Arrests Local IranDeal Negotiator as Spy

Sunday, August 28th, 2016

Tehran has arrested a member of the IranDeal negotiating team barely a year after signing the agreement that lifted international sanctions and restored billions of dollars to the Islamic Republic coffers.

Iranian state media reported Sunday the unidentified negotiator is under investigation for being a “spy who infiltrated the nuclear team.” The suspect was allegedly held for several days but has since been released, according to the report.

Earlier this month, U.S. President Barack Obama announced with pride that Israel’s “military and security community” has realized he was right all along and now supports the deal with Iran. “The country that was most opposed to the deal,” he said in news conference on August 6, “acknowledges that this has been a game-changer.”

Not exactly. Nevertheless, by some standards it appeared that for diplomacy’s sake the Israeli response was still somewhat restrained.

The Iranian prosecutor general announced August 16 that a dual national linked to British intelligence had been arrested, but at the time did not link the arrest to the nuclear talks. At the same time, the UK said it was trying to find out more about the arrest of a dual national, Reuters reported.

On Sunday, Iranian judiciary spokesperson Gholamhossein Mohseni Ejei responded during a weekly briefing to a question by a reporter about a reference by an Iranian lawmaker to a member of the negotiating team with dual nationality, who was arrested on charges of espionage. He did not, however, confirm the suspect had British citizenship.

Earlier this month, nuclear scientist Shahram Amiri was executed by Iran “for revealing the country’s top secrets to the (U.S.) enemy,” Ejei was quoted as saying by the Mizan Online news site. The scientist’s body was returned to his home town with what appeared to be rope marks on his neck, according to his family, suggesting execution by hanging, media reported.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/tehran-arrests-local-irandeal-negotiator-as-spy/2016/08/28/

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