Hardline cleric Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi criticized politicians who studied at western universities saying, “Those who were educated in England, the United States, and France are responsible for the country's most important cultural diversions; because their intellectual thought process is formed in those countries.” Many of President Hassan Rouhani’s cabinet ministers attended graduate school at western universities.
During a television program, Iranian nuclear physicist and principalist politician Mehdi Chamran was asked by the host to briefly describe a number of influential Iranians. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad: “A hardworking man with ideals.” Mir Hussein Mousavi: “An artist who entered politics and wasn’t able to figure it out in the end.” Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani: “A wise cleric who God-willing will remain on the same path.” Former President Mohammed Khatami: “A cultural and political personality.” President Hassan Rouhani: “A moderate cleric who is eager to see the country advance.”
ECONOMY & ENERGY
The National Iranian Oil Products Distribution Company (NIOPDC) announced a dramatic decline in gasoline consumption since the cutting of state fuel subsides. Phase two of fuel subsidy reform was implemented last Friday which caused the price of fuel to increase upwards up to 50-75 percent.
While on a trip to Lorestan, Turkey’s Ambassador to Iran, Umit Yardim expressed that that the goal of the trip was to “establish economic and cultural ties,” and stressed “the (economic) relationship between Ankara and Tehran is not sufficient and it’s my belief that we need to interact with other cities.”
The website for Iran’s Oil Ministry reports that it plans on extracting 30,000 bpd from the joint Azar oil field, shared with Iraq. The ministry estimates that the first phase of production will yield 30,000 bpd, and “once the field’s development plan is completed oil output will reach 65,000 bpd.”
During a meeting with two grand ayatollahs, Iran’s Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani said, “Thankfully the nuclear negotiations are on the right path, and (our) negotiating team is in the final stages (of talks).”
SOCIETY & CULTURE
Dr. Behnam Behnoosh of Tehran University told IRIB that “most suicides among Iranian females are within the age range of 18-40,” and that while men tend to commit suicide as a result of economic issues, the “majority of females who commit suicide do so as a result of depression or other mental health problems.”
While speaking with Ayatollah Nouri Hamedani, Iran’s Health Minister Hassan Hashemi said, “70 percent of the deaths in Iran are related to non-communicable diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and drug addiction,” and that dealing with this issue is a “major priority” for the health ministry.
Hardline Mashhad Friday Prayer Leader Ayatollah Ahmad Alamolhoda today criticized Minister of Communication Mahmoud Vaezi for his comments about making Facebook accessible for Iranians. “Unfortunately, if what he said is true, this means the flood gates will be opened to the enemies of Islam and their culture,” said Alamolhoda.
In commemoration of National Teacher’s Day: A photo essay of Iran’s nomadic teachers who travel to villages to teach school children.
In commemoration of National Teacher’s Day: Iranian teachers showcased in front of their classroom chalkboards.
Striking photo essay expresses the medical concern of low-flying airplanes over Tehran and the noise pollution emitted from the jets.