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Friday, May 31, 2013

Sadr Gives Maliki 'Final Warning'

What I noticed some common strategy and planning between Altaf & Muqtada's Power Politics. Amazing one is in beard and other is clean shaved. They both are hardliner and they both have to continue supporting their Premier or President (Al-Maliki & Zardari- Karzai). These rulers are installed only after US Invasion and State Department Dictated Democracies and uncalled Invasion of Baghdad/ISLAMabad/Kabul. In the sameway How Communisim rules China, Khamenie wants to prolong his control in Middle East by using excuse of Welayet-e-Faqih Principle. (56) Allah has promised to those of you who believe and do good that He will most certainly make them rulers in the earth as He made rulers those before them, and that He will most certainly establish for them their religion which He has chosen for them, and that He will most certainly, after their fear, give them security in exchange; they shall serve Me, not associating aught with Me; and whoever is ungrateful after this, these it is who are the. transgressors. ) اللہ نے ایسے لوگوں سے وعدہ فرمایا ہے (جس کا ایفا اور تعمیل امت پر لازم ہے) جو تم میں سے ایمان لائے اور نیک عمل کرتے رہے وہ ضرور انہی کو زمین میں خلافت (یعنی امانتِ اقتدار کا حق) عطا فرمائے گا جیسا کہ اس نے ان لوگوں کو (حقِ) حکومت بخشا تھا جو ان سے پہلے تھے اور ان کے لئے ان کے دین کو جسے اس نے ان کے لئے پسند فرمایا ہے (غلبہ و اقتدار کے ذریعہ) مضبوط و مستحکم فرما دے گا اور وہ ضرور (اس تمکّن کے باعث) ان کے پچھلے خوف کو (جو ان کی سیاسی، معاشی اور سماجی کمزوری کی وجہ سے تھا) ان کے لئے امن و حفاظت کی حالت سے بدل دے گا، وہ (بے خوف ہو کر) میری عبادت کریں گے میرے ساتھ کسی کو شریک نہیں ٹھہرائیں گے (یعنی صرف میرے حکم اور نظام کے تابع رہیں گے)، اور جس نے اس کے بعد ناشکری (یعنی میرے احکام سے انحراف و انکار) کو اختیار کیا تو وہی لوگ فاسق (و نافرمان) ہوں گے ﴿۵۵﴾
============ Sadr Gives Maliki 'Final Warning' Iraqi Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr (R) and Ammar al-Hakim, leader of the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq (ISCI), hold a news conference in Najaf, 160 km (100 miles) south of Baghdad, May 8, 2013. (photo by REUTERS/Haider Ala ) • Print • FONT SIZE • • By: Ali Abel Sadah for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse Posted on May 29. إقرأ باللغة العربية What did controversial Iraqi Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr mean when he issued on May 27 “a final warning to the government to assume its duty of protecting the people"? About This Article Summary : Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr has issued a warning to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to withdraw militants from the streets amid a series of devastating car bombings throughout Iraq. Original Title: Muqtada al-Sadr: A Final Call to Maliki After a Series of Bombings in Baghdad Author: Ali Abel Sadah Translated by: Naria Tanoukhi Categories :Originals Iraq Security Political observers in Iraq were expecting one of the most prominent Shiite leaders opposed to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to leave the Iraqi National Alliance, and [thus] end the political majority of the Shiite forces in the country. Sadr's call came after a series of bloody acts of violence, including 10 car bombs that targeted Shiite neighborhoods in the capital and resulted in the killing of at least 70 people. Sadr said in the statement that "terrorism has influence and control in Iraq. They (militants) frequently step up their bombings, which are met by mere condemnation or silence by all parties." He added that "the people are now without a government to protect them and are facing terrorism without help from anyone." The Shiite leader called on Iraqis to “eliminate hatred from the hearts, defuse sectarian rancor, and return to God." "As for the government, it must prosecute and expel incompetent and disloyal members of the security corps who are only after power and recognition,” he added. This is not the first time that Sadr has given advice to the Maliki government on security issues. In his latest statement, he reiterated his call for "[the need to] consolidate intelligence efforts by using the correct methods and working hard to defuse sectarian tension." However, Sadr’s statement clearly indicated that Maliki wants to engage in an internal war in the country. He said, "We have learned that the prime minister wants to declare the start of a sectarian war in Iraq." Sadr called on the government to "unite [political forces], but not through banquets and economic forums attended by Israelis, but purely national meetings which I have called for and accepted to attend." Sadr concluded his statement and calls for the people and government by saying: "This is the last call I make to the people on one hand, and the government on the other hand. Forewarned is forearmed. Oh God, I have warned." Sadr's position coincided with security developments that followed a series of bombings. Armed men deployed in towns in central Baghdad and its suburbs. Eyewitnesses and security sources provided conflicting accounts regarding the identity of the gunmen, but some stated that they belong to the Asaib Ahl al-Haq. Asaib Ahl al-Haq is an insurgent group that defected from the Sadrist current about five years ago. Last year, Qais al-Khazali, the group’s leader, expressed [favorable] positions toward the prime minister and declared that [his group] was defending the Shiites in Iraq. This raised the concerns of Sunni parties in the government. In his statement, Sadr gave Maliki an ultimatum, calling on him to withdraw the Asaib Ahl al-Haq militants from the streets of Baghdad within 24 hours. A senior security source in the Ministry of Interior told Al-Monitor that “special forces deployed in the streets of Baghdad, following news about the spread of militants in some towns. But he denied knowledge of who the insurgents are affiliated with." Sadr’s warnings were immediately accepted by the Sunnis. The protesters in Anbar "welcomed" Sadr’s "ultimatum to Maliki to withdraw the Asaib Ahl al-Haq militias" from the streets of Baghdad. Abdul-Razzaq al-Shammari, spokesman of the political bureau of the protest square in Ramadi, said that the protesters "support the step taken by Muqtada al-Sadr." In an interview with Al-Monitor’s correspondent, he said that "all Arab religious and social authorities and tribal leaders in the southern provinces should take a similar step before a human catastrophe happens in Baghdad." He said that the militias are still committing criminal acts in Baghdad. The Iraqi public is accustomed to strong statements by Sadr against his Shiite ally and rival Maliki. However, their strategic alliance has never been broken since the formation of a Shiite-dominated government as a result of the alliance between the Dawa Party and the Sadrist movement. Still, this does not mean that Sadr is not considering overthrowing Maliki, and the security deterioration may be an opportunity to do that. Maha al-Douri, a Shiite politician in the Sadrist movement, called on Maliki to resign as prime minister. Douri told Al-Monitor, "Maliki has two options, either to step down or [waive the post of prime minister] to a Shiite figure in the Iraqi National Alliance." Douri said this would "spare the bloodshed of Iraqis." Ali Abel Sadah is a Baghdad-based writer for both Iraqi and Arab media. He has been a managing editor for local newspapers as well as a political and cultural reporter for more than 10 years. Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2013/05/sadr-maliki-iraq-warning.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter#ixzz2UvdFlOTt ====================== Iraqis Fear Return of 'Death Squads' To Baghdad Streets Iraqis inspect the damage following fighting in Baghdad's Sadr City, Aug. 7, 2006, when US and Iraqi forces raided a suspected death squad in the area. (photo by REUTERS/Kareem Raheem) • Print • FONT SIZE • • By: Mushreq Abbas for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse Posted on May 30. إقرأ باللغة العربية The term "death squads" evokes an unequaled panic among Iraqis. Memories of the killings based on ID cards during the Iraqi civil war cannot be forgotten. The civil war erupted after the bombing of the holy Shiite shrine in Samarra in 2006, and transformed ethnically-mixed cities in Iraq — particularly Baghdad — into the biggest scene of conflict. During the war, atrocities were committed by both Sunni and Shiite armed groups, including exchange killings and forcibly displacing people to different neighborhoods. About This Article Summary : In light of escalating political crises and sectarian divisions in Iraq, some fear the return of Baghdad’s infamous "death squads," who reigned with terror over the past 10 years. Original Title: Did the Death Squads Return to the Streets of Baghdad? Author: Mushreq Abbas Translated by: Joelle El-Khoury Categories :Originals Iraq Security In turn, the death squads were the most ambiguous aspect of the war. They carried out kidnappings and killings by wearing Iraqi police uniforms, and traveling in official and military vehicles in 2006-2007 — while an evening curfew was in place (from midnight to 6 a.m.) — to hunt for their victims. This term goes back to before the civil war, when The Washington Post used it on Dec. 4, 2005, while criticizing the way the Iraqi police forces were formed and infiltrated by militias. Remarkably, the term has re-emerged after eight years. As news reports in Baghdad talked about the return of militants and killings carried out by armed militias in broad daylight, the Sunni Mutahidoun bloc held the Iraqi authorities responsible for this matter and accused them of bringing back the civil war. The Iraqi Interior Ministry denied this matter and stressed that talk of false checkpoints where people are being killed according to their IDs in the streets of Baghdad is a rumor designed to spread panic. Regardless of the number of assassinations carried out by the new death squads in Baghdad these days, they can really spread panic among city residents. Horrific stories of assassinations carried out before the government forces’ eyes in the neighborhoods of Sedea, ad-Dawrah, Kadhimiya and al-Shaab, targeting both Sunni and Shiite citizens, have circulated among the population. In light of the lack of accurate information from the authorities, the panic mainly reflects the fragility of the security situation in this country, and its vulnerability to internal confrontation. The reason behind this impression is that talk about the return of the death squads in Iraqi police uniforms followed a series of developments. They began with intensified attacks by al-Qaeda and armed Sunni groups against Shiite residential compounds, which coincided with the outbreak of demonstrations in the Sunni cities in late 2012, and the rise of concerns about a potential new confrontation between the Sunnis and Shiites. This is particularly the case since Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki publicly warned that a civil war may erupt against the backdrop of demonstrations. It could be said that the major achievement made by Maliki throughout his rule, which began in 2006, is eliminating the death squads through the so-called Saulat al-Fursan [Charge of the Nights] military operations. These operations were followed by a large-scale cleansing of the security forces, which included hundreds of officers and soldiers who were believed to be involved in one way or another in the establishment of the death squads. This achievement is not only about Maliki himself, as head of the government or leader of the State of Law Coalition, but mainly about the people’s trust in the security services, and whether or not this trust will be undermined by high rates of violence and the return of various aspects of the civil war. The main problem regarding the formation of the security and military forces in Iraq from 2003 until today is linked to accusations that they favor one social group at the expense of another, or maintain allegiance to Maliki's party alone. Such accusations would be baseless had the Iraqi security forces committed themselves to the same role they played during and after the Battle of Basra, by declaring themselves the protectors and defenders of the people against terrorist acts. It seems remarkable that the warnings of a civil war have not been associated with the bombings, for which al-Qaeda in Iraq has often claimed responsibility. These bombings did not shake the Iraqis’ confidence in the impartiality of the security forces — even though the number of victims in these bombings, which have continued throughout the past 10 years, exceeded the number of victims in the killings that have taken place in Baghdad these days. The decisive factor in this matter is the neutrality of the military and security forces, and their commitment not to become involved in political or sectarian conflict. This scenario seems to be more difficult with the absence of US forces, which assumed the role of broker between political parties during the war, and had succeeded in restoring relative civil peace since 2008. The American absence from the whole Iraqi crisis — whose security implications correlate with its political and social implications — was expressed by Iraq’s Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari. He told CNN in an interview on May 24: “We have lost the service of an honest broker. Before, it used to be the United States." He also noted that the Iraqi government “has failed to rise above sectarian differences.” Although Zebari ruled out the possibility that Iraq could slip into civil war again, the signs regarding the recent assassinations in Baghdad may indicate the opposite. Today, the urgent question in the streets of Baghdad is, “Have all opportunities to prevent a civil war been squandered?” The answer is probably difficult; however, it stresses the need for having political leaders that are up to confronting the crisis, not being a part of it. Mushreq Abbas is a contributing writer for Al-Monitor’s Iraq Pulse. He has been managing editor of Al-Hayat’s Iraq bureau since 2005, and written studies and articles on Iraqi crises for domestic and international publication. Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2013/05/death-squads-iraq-fears.html#ixzz2UvhICmP3 ======================= KHI: Paharganj. Yazidiyon ny Imam bargah pr abhi Dasti bomb sy hamla kiya hy. Ahliyan-e-Mohallah ka moaqaf #shiagenocide same as Manzar Imam of MQM killed because of his name, but he was also not shia.. T♡M ALERT ( EXTREMIST THREATENS SHIA AREAS ) Quetta on threat , ALAMDAR ROAD , BURORI shia areas on threat . extremists threatened to launch an offensive in shia areas of QUETTA , such as ALAMDAR ROAD / BURORI after the one top leader was killed in an air strike . lot of security forces are covering up the mountains . please khuwara wa madara mo rafth amad khu ra da barai chand roz limited kanin or koshish kin ki az main roads raah narin as pasi kocha borin . EVERYBODY ALERT / QUETTA / ALAMDAR RD / BURORI PEOPLE BE VIGILANT watch and be extra cautious . http://t.co/oQB2jdIhlp Sadr Gives Maliki 'Final Warning' http://almon.co/8tw 29 May Sadr warns Maliki "to withdraw the Asaib Ahl al-Haq militants from the streets of Baghdad within 24 hours." Final final final warning Claim that Abu Diri killed in Sayyida Zainab. Sadrist says resistance has no right to fight in Syria on any side http://ara.tv/canfg (Ar) Rebels in Syria carry on their unholy mission to destroy holy sites in the name of God http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLVcc6-0lbk … http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLVcc6-0lbk جدہ میں واقع مسجد ’’فاطمہ زہرا (س)‘‘ کا نام تبدیل اہلبیت علیہم السلام سے تکفیری وہابیوں کی دشمنی کا ایک نیا ثبوت یہ ہے کہ انہوں نے سعودی عرب کے شہر جدہ میں واقع مسجد ’’ حضرت فاطمہ زہرا سلام اللہ علیہا‘‘ کا نام تبدیل کر کے’’ مسجد الرحمہ‘‘ رکھ دیا ہے۔

Turk police in teargas crackdown on anti-government protesters

https://www.facebook.com/video/embed?video_id=656778244339723 LIVE UPDATES: Turkish police clamp down on anti-government protests Get short URL Published time: May 31, 2013 22:31 Edited time: June 01, 2013 07:03 An anti-government protester sits in front of rubbish set on fire by protesters as they clash with riot police in central Ankara early June 1, 2013 (Reuters / Umit Bektas) Share on tumblr Turkish police have fired tear gas and water cannon to disperse a massive demonstration against the demolition of a park in central Istanbul. The rally grew into a wider anti-government protest and is spreading across the country. 06:20 GMT: Police are firing teargas to bar the protesters from reaching the main square, AP reported Saturday morning. Protestors clash with Turkish riot policemen on May 31, 2013.(AFP Photo / Gurcan Ozturk) 05:40 GMT: Security has been stepped up in the metropolis, with police forces drafted from other regions. Some districts in Istanbul have been cordoned off. Traffic is currently at a standstill. 04:55 GMT: Thousands are crossing the Bosphorus Bridge this morning, to get to Taskim Square in the heart of Istanbul, marking the second day of protest turbulence engulfing Istanbul. Photo from twitter.com user @sekermurat 02:34 GMT: The photos show angry crowds in the streets of the Turkish capital, Ankara, overnight. Thousands rallied in the center of the city earlier on Friday chanting for the government to resign. Police fired tear gas to disperse several dozen opposition supporters trying to reach the AKP headquarters. Anti-government protesters shout slogans as they clash with riot police in central Ankara early June 1, 2013 (Reuters / Umit Bektas) Anti-government protesters clash with riot police in central Ankara early June 1, 2013 (Reuters / Umit Bektas) 01:20 GMT: Thousands of fans from the three largest soccer teams in Turkey joined the demonstrators in Istanbul, Ayda said. 01:18 GMT: As of 3:00am local time, even the most remote and quiet neighborhoods of Istanbul had joined in the protest, Ayda, a demonstrator, told RT. People are "banging on pots and pans, yelling, honking their car horns on the streets, and yelling slogans like "Erdogan, istifa!" (Turkish: Erdogan, resign!)."
00:00 GMT: Istanbul resident Tan Tunali told RT Istiklal Caddesi, the street leading to Taksim Square, was almost empty as of 2:00am local time, with the protesters spreading to other streets. “Now a lot of people spontaneously started taking to the streets and probably many of them are trying to get to Taksim.” Saturday, June 1 23:50 GMT: According to an Istanbul-based activist, who has chosen to go by the alias Pink Pig, the protest is growing bigger. “People are coming from everywhere.” A witness video shows that the demonstration has spread to the Besiktas Sqaure, which is to the west of Taksim Square. “Today the police used gas bombs and water cannon to get the protesters away from the Gezi park. And then from Taksim square too. They closed all the entries to the Taksim square. They closed the Taksim metro station. Since the morning we smelt gas in the streets of Taksim,” the activist told RT.
23:19 GMT: 22: 40 GMT: Witness says '1000s of people in Ankara closed off the protocol road, marching toward the parliament building.' Earlier reports emerged of the protests and tear-gas having spread from Istanbul's Gezi to the capital Ankara. Protesters also witnessed at two locations in Izmir, according to social media pictures. Thousands are currently reported to be marching towards the Parliament. Demonstrators set fire to barricades as they clash with riot police during an anti-government protest at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Murad Sezer) Riot police use tear gas to disperse the crowd during an anti-government protests at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Murad Sezer) 22:36 GMT: There are reports that police are teargassing people in a subway station. 22: 31 GMT: Witness says 'military distriburting masks' as police continue with the teargas, adding that it appears 'the military haven't been reined in by the government.' 22:26 GMT: 22:24 GMT: Police said to have used plastic bullets, causing more severe injuries. Riot police use tear gas to disperse the crowd during an anti-government protests at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Osman Orsal) 22:15 GMT: Six out the twelve protesters injured so far have incurred serious head trauma. 22:00 GMT: 12 protesters injured, 100 receive minor injuries. 20:00 GMT: Police carry out dawn raid against protesters. 21:39 GMT: 21:00: GMT: A video shows police using water cannons to disperse protesters at Istanbul's landmark Taksim Square. 21:00 GMT: Share on tumblr Comments (25) Riots, barricades, street battles as police fight protesters in Turkey (PHOTOS, VIDEO) Published time: May 31, 2013 18:24 Edited time: June 01, 2013 03:51 Riot police use tear gas to disperse the crowd during an anti-government protests at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Murad Sezer) Clashes, History, Politics, Protest A peaceful rally in Istanbul against the demolition of a landmark park has ignited violent protests across the country, leading to fierce clashes with police leaving hundreds injured, highlighting people’s growing discontent with the current government. Follow RT's Live Updates on protests in Turkey The clashes erupted after police carried out a dawn raid against protesters Friday, the second in as many days. Demonstrators are angry at government plans to cut down trees in Gezi Park, next to Taksim Square, to make way for a replica Ottoman army barracks and a shopping mall. They say it is the last green space of any size in the center of Istanbul. At least 12 people including a pro-Kurdish MP and a Reuters photographer, suffered trauma injuries. Six of the injured are suffering from serious head trauma. A 34-year old Egyptian tourist is undergoing an operation after suffering a brain hemorrhage, Huseyin Demirduzen, from the Istanbul Medical Chamber board, told Reuters. While a member of the opposition Peace and Democratic Party is in intensive care in a serious condition. Hundreds more suffered respiratory problems due to the effects of tear gas, Demirduzen said. Several people were injured after a wall they were trying to climb in an attempt to get away from clouds of tear gas collapsed underneath them. A Turkish riot policeman uses tear gas as a demonstrator holds a banner which reads that, "Chemical Tayyip", referring to Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. (Reuters / Murad Sezer) Late Wednesday the main opposition leader, Kemal Kilicdaroglu from the Republic People’s Party (CHP) made a surprise visit to the protest camp of several hundred demonstrators and promised that members of his party would take turns to help the protesters stop an attempt to bring back the bulldozers. In the first raid against crowds on Thursday, police used a Mass Incident Intervention Vehicle (TOMA) to disperse them before seizing and burning some of their tents, according to the Hurriyet Daily News. The Peace and Democracy Party described the police intervention as “state terror” in an e-mailed statement. Amnesty International also said it was concerned with “the use of excessive force” by police after what started as a peaceful protest. The protest at Gezi Park started on Monday after developers tore up trees but has now become a broader demonstration against Prime Minster Tayyip Erdogan’s Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP). “This isn’t about trees anymore; it’s about all of the pressure we’re under from this government. We’re fed up; we don’t like the direction the country is headed in,” Mert Burge, an 18 year-old student, who came to support the protesters after he heard about the use of tear gas via twitter, told Reuters. Turkish riot police use water cannon to disperse demonstrators during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. (Reuters / Murad Sezer) In Ankara, the Turkish capital, police also used tear gas to disperse protesters trying to reach the headquarters of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in support of the anti-government supporters in Istanbul. Erdogan has said he wants to introduce an Ottoman cultural revival. As well as a more assertive foreign policy, more conservative policies are also being gradually introduced at home. He is also authorizing a slew of multi-billion dollar projects aimed at reflecting Turkey’s reemergence as a major power including a third airport in Istanbul, which will be one the world’s biggest and a shipping canal as big as the Suez or Panama canals. Tayyip Erdogan defended the decision concerning the Gezi Park, saying “Whatever you do, we’ve made our decision and we will implement it, we will revive history there.” Although the government has denied that the mall is part of the plan, insisting it needs the space to widen a nearby road and ease traffic congestion, according to RTE News. While the Istanbul deputy of Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) Sirin Unal tweeted his support of the police’s heavy-handed response. “Obviously there are some people in need of gas. If you leave there [Taksim Square] I hope you will have a good day, the system needs to be obeyed,” he wrote. On May Day police clashed with tens of thousands of demonstrators in Istanbul and there have been several smaller protests against a tightening of alcohol sales and displays of public affection as well the government’s stance on the neighboring Syria conflict. A demonstrator covers her face as riot police use tear gas to disperse the crowd during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. (Reuters / Murad Sezer) Turkish riot police use water cannon to disperse demonstrators during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. (Reuters / Osman Orsal) A demonstrator reacts as riot police use a water cannon and tear gas to disperse the crowd during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Murad Sezer) Riot police use tear gas to disperse the crowd during an anti-government protests at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Osman Orsal) Demonstrators set fire to barricades as they clash with riot police during an anti-government protest at Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013 (Reuters / Murad Sezer) ================= Turk police in teargas crackdown on anti-government protesters KARACHI MAY Ki Killing 1st Week>60 2nd Week>60 3rd Week>53 4th Week>90 Firing Blasts O Pur Tashadud Waqiat Me 263 Afrad Qatal Karachi, May 31: A prominent Shia educationist and his driver on Friday were shot and killed by unknown attackers in Pakistan's financial capital Karachi, police said. Syed Azfar Rizvi was in his car with the driver when unidentified gunmen riding a motorcycle opened fire at them. Both Rizvi and his driver succumbed to their injuries on their way to hospital. Their bodies have been shifted to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for medico-legal formalities, police said. Rizvi was head of the Dhaka Group of Educational Institutions and served as an honorary secretary of Anjuman-e-Taraqqi-e-Urdu Pakistan. SSP of district central Aamir Farooqi said that Rizvi along with the driver was returning home from the Karimabad branch of the Dhaka Coaching Centre's chain when two assailants on a motorcycle ambushed his car near Cafe Student. Earlier on Friday, Rizvi had sent an article to the media in which he supported Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain's recent party reorganisation. Private Schools Association has announced to observe a day of mourning on Saturday. Motive behind the targeted killing is yet to be ascertained. Turkey is same country which is involved in financing and exporting terrorists in Syria to destabilize Assad,( implementing Saudi-NATO-Washington Plan)Its God's wrath that people rose up due to several reasons and at the moment 2 of its major cities are under public control: Twit1: Beautiful people marching from Asia to European side in Istanbul to help protestors , Twit 2:The Middle Class of Turkey is Rising Up, and Decreasing Rights and Conditions lead to #direngeziparki (Today I am Turkish, Tomorrow I will be Kurdish, Today I am Punjabi, Tomorrow I will prove to be a Mohajir-Tit for Tat) 1 of 7. Turkish riot police use tear gas to disperse demonstrators during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. Credit: Reuters/Osman Orsal By Murad Sezer and Osman Orsal ISTANBUL | Fri May 31, 2013 1:16pm BST ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish police fired tear gas and water cannon on Friday at protesters occupying a park in central Istanbul, injuring scores in the latest violent crackdown on anti-government demonstrations. The protest at Gezi Park started late on Monday after developers tore up trees but has widened into a broader demonstration against Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's Islamist-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP). FINANCIAL COMMENTARIES AND GUIDESADVERTISEMENTPOWERED BY Dividend season Dividend season Resilience of corporate dividend payments [For advisers] Read the blog >>Investing in Brazil Investing in Brazil Is the tide turning in Brazil? Find out more >> Riot police recently clashed with tens of thousands of May Day protesters in Istanbul. There have also been protests against the government's stance on the conflict in neighbouring Syria, a recent tightening of restrictions on alcohol sales and warnings against public displays of affection. Police staged a dawn raid on demonstrators who had been camping for days in Gezi Park in anger at plans to build a shopping mall, and clouds of tear gas rose around the area in Taksim Square that has long been a venue for political protest. "We do not have a government, we have Tayyip Erdogan...Even AK Party supporters are saying they have lost their mind, they are not listening to us," said Koray Caliskan, a political scientist at Bosphorus University who attended the protest. "This is the beginning of a summer of discontent." The Istanbul Medical Chamber, a doctors' association, said at least 100 people sustained minor injuries on Friday, some of them when a wall they were climbing collapsed as they tried to flee clouds of tear gas. Amnesty International said it was concerned by what it described as "the use of excessive force" by the police against what had started out as a peaceful protest. Erdogan has overseen a transformation in Turkey during his decade in power, turning its economy from crisis-prone into Europe's fastest-growing. Per capita income has tripled in nominal terms since his party rose to power. He remains by far Turkey's most popular politician, and is widely viewed as its most powerful leader since Mustafa Kemal Ataturk founded the modern secular republic on the ashes of the Ottoman Empire 90 years ago. The unrest has been far from the sort of mass demonstrations seen in other parts of the Middle East or even parts of Europe in recent years, but it reflects growing opposition concern about Erdogan's authoritarianism. DEFIANCE Hundreds of military officers have been jailed on charges of plotting a coup against Erdogan in recent years; others including academics, journalists and politicians face trial on similar accusations. Erdogan has made no secret of his ambition to run for the presidency in elections next year when his term as prime minister ends, exacerbating opposition concerns. "These people will not bow down to you" read one banner at the Gezi Park protest, alongside a cartoon of Erdogan wearing an Ottoman emperor's turban. Postings on social media including Twitter, where "Occupy Gezi" - a reference to protests in New York and London last year - was a top-trending hashtag, and Facebook said similar demonstrations were planned for the next few days in other Turkish cities including Ankara, Izmir, Adana and Bursa. "Kiss protests" - in which demonstrators are urged to lock lips - had already been planned for Istanbul and Ankara this weekend after subway officials were reported to have admonished a couple for kissing in public a week ago. Erdogan is pushing ahead with a slew of multi-billion dollar projects which he sees as embodying Turkey's emergence as a major power. They include a shipping canal designed to rival Panama or Suez, a giant mosque and a third Istanbul airport billed to be one of the world's biggest. Speaking just a few miles from Gezi Park at the launch on Wednesday of construction of a third bridge linking Istanbul's European and Asian shores, Erdogan vowed to pursue plans to redevelop Taksim Square. Architects, leftist political parties, academics, city planners and others have long opposed the plans, saying they lacked consultation with civic groups and would remove one of central Istanbul's few green spaces. (Additional reporting by Ece Toksabay and Ayla Jean Yackley; Writing by Nick Tattersall; Editing by Mark Heinrich) =========== Chairmen Dhaka Group, Azeem Ustad,Ashiq Ehlybait A.s S.AZFAR RIZVI Ki Namaz Janaza Darbar Sultani Masjid F.B AREA Me AJ 4 Bjy Hogi. متحدہ قومی موومنٹ کے قائد جناب الطاف حسین نے ماہر تعلیم،ممتازسماجی کارکن ایم کیوایم فیڈرل بی ایریا سیکٹر اورفیڈرل بی ایریاریزیڈنٹ کمیٹی کے دیرینہ رکن پروفیسر اظفررضوی اورانکے ڈرائیور کے بہیمانہ قتل کی سخت ترین الفاظ میں مذمت کی ہے اورحکومت سے مطالبہ کیاہے کہ اظفررضوی شہید کے قاتلوں کوگرفتارکیاجائے۔ایک بیان میں جناب الطاف حسین نے کہاکہ پروفیسر اظفررضوی ایک انتہائی نفیس اورباکردار شخصیت اورسادہ طبیعت کے انسان تھے،وہ ادبی اورسماجی حلقوں میں ایک سرگرم شخصیت تھے اور ان کاقتل بڑاسانحہ اورادبی وسماجی حلقو ں اور تعلیم کے شعبے کاقابل تلافی نقصان ہے۔انہوں نے کہا کہ اظفررضوی اپنی ادبی اور سماجی سرگرمیوں کے ساتھ ساتھ ایم کیوایم کے پیغام کوپھیلانے میں بھی سرگرم عمل تھے اورایم کیوایم کی فلاحی سرگرمیوں میں بھی بڑھ چڑھ کرحصہ لیتے تھے۔ اظفررضوی جیسے شریف النفس اورتعلیم یافتہ شخص کونشانہ بنانے والے کسی بھی قیمت پر انسان کہلانے کے مستحق نہیں ۔ان درندوں نے صرف ایک گھر نہیں اجاڑاہے بلکہ انسانیت کوناقابل تلافی نقصان پہنچایا ہے ۔جناب الطاف حسین نے اظفررضوی شہیدکے سوگوار لواحقین سے دلی تعزیت وہمدردی کا اظہار کرتے ہوئے کہاکہ دکھ اورافسوس کی گھڑی میں مجھ سمیت ایم کیوایم کے تمام کارکنان آپکے غم میں برابرکے شریک ہیں ۔ انہوں نے دعاکی کہ اللہ تعالیٰ اظفر رضوی شہیدکواپنی جواررحمت میں اعلیٰ مقام عطافرمائے اورسوگوارلواحقین کو صبرجمل عطاکرے۔جناب الطاف حسین نے صدر مملکت آصف علی زرداری ، نگراں وزیراعظم میرہزار خان کھوسہ، نگراں وفاقی وزیرداخلہ ملک حبیب اور سندھ حکومت سے مطالبہ کیاکہ ایم کیوایم کے کارکن وماہرتعلیم اظفررضوی اورانکے ڈرائیور کے بہیمانہ قتل کافوری نوٹس لیاجائے اورقتل کی المناک واردات میں ملوث دہشت گردوں کوگرفتارکرکے سخت ترین سزادی جائے۔ ================ Wednesday, June 05, 2013 ERDOGAN TO BE TOPPLED? The BBC appears to reveal the thinking of MI6, the CIA and the Zionists on Turkey: "Turkey was suggested as a model for a Muslim democracy. "Some Arabs, who took to the streets against their own leaders, are having second thoughts about that as they watch pictures of Turkish riot police attacking demonstrators." Could protests be Erdogan's undoing? This might be translated as: The Zionist model for Moslem countries may not be Turkey. It is more likely to be Afghanistan. Behind you! MICHAEL RUBIN, in the Wall Street Journal, tells us more about (what would seem to be the Zionist attitude to) the Turkish Uprising "Erdoğan has accumulated more foreign debt in his rule than all of Turkey's previous prime ministers combined... "Many Turks are enraged by signs that Mr. Erdoğan and his aides have enriched themselves while in power. "Few believe the prime minister's explanation that his newfound wealth - millions of dollars in property and a reputed eight Swiss bank accounts, according to U.S. diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks - is the result of wedding gifts received by his son. "Turks remember that 13 corruption cases pending from his Istanbul mayoral tenure remain suspended only because he enjoys parliamentary immunity." This might be translated as: You are going to be toppled, just like Suharto and a host of other former friends. In April 2013, John Kerry said that the United States asked Erdogan to delay a Gaza Strip visit so as not to upset U.S. efforts to revive Ankara's ties with Israel and Middle East peace talks. United States asked Turkey PM April 2013 - Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate met up with Turkish President Abdullah Gül during their official visit to Turkey. Erdogan is still popular with half of the Turkish population. If 'the powers-that-be' have decided to topple Erdogan, they will need to have assets within the Turkish military. It was CIA assets within the Egyptian and Tunisian militaries that toppled Mubarak and Ben Ali. The chief of the Turkish general staff, Necdet Ozel, is said to be fiercely loyal to Prime Minister Erdogan. Turkey and its army: Erdogan and his generals | The Economist April 2013. What are they plotting? Kerry’s visit to Turkey was clouded by Erdogan’s plans for a trip to Gaza. "The silence of the Turkish army has been deafening... "The backbone of the Turkish military remains fundamentally secular and Ataturkian. "Many of them voted for Erdogan's AKP in the last elections, not because of religious faith but because, as one high-ranking officer explained, Erdogan ''put the economy back on track, tripled per capita income, made Turkey the 17th world economy, a regional power''. "But the army's secular soul remains. 'If he tries to institute an Islamic republic, we will stop him', the officer promised." Turkey: the strange silence of Ataturk's military - Politics - ANSAMed.it Ergenekon was the name given to to the CIA's terrorist activity in Turkey. "The investigation into the illegal network known as Ergenekon, which was plotting to overthrow the Erdogan Government and replace it by a pro-U.S. military dictatorship, revealed that this terrorist organisation was a remodeled version of the Turkish Gladio. "However, Ergenekon didn’t receive orders only from NATO; it allegedly also maintained close ties with the Mossad through Rabbi Tuncay Guney." The Israeli Lobby On 3 June 2013, Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan was visiting Morocco. "Moroccan King Mohammad VI did not receive Erdoğan during the official visit to Morocco, the country's media reported June 4." Turkish PM Erdoğan did not meet King Mohammad VI during Morocco visit Mohammad VI is a close friend of the USA and Israel, reportedly. Erdogan in Algeria Erdogan left for Algeria on 4 June 2013, and traveled to Tunisia on 5 June, to "take part in the first meeting of the Turko-Tunisian strategic cooperation council." "He is due to return to Turkey on Thursday." Turkish PM Erdogan arrives in Morocco Gladio A made use of Nazis. Gladio B made use of fascist 'Islamists'. Gladio C may make use of fascist mercenaries. ==================== U.S. intelligence chief says surveillance targets non-U.S. citizens Thu, Jun 06 22:38 PM EDT WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. intelligence chief James Clapper said on Thursday the law that allows American government agencies to collect communications from internet companies only permits the targeting of "non-U.S. persons" outside the United States. Responding to articles published by the Washington Post and Britain's Guardian newspaper, Clapper, the director of national intelligence, said in a statement that the stories contained "numerous inaccuracies," but he did not offer any details. The Post and Guardian reported that the U.S. government tapped directly into the servers of leading U.S. internet companies, allowing agents to examine emails, photos and other documents. (Reporting by Jim Loney; Editing by Eric Beech) ==========================

Iraq says it averted al Qaeda tanker truck attack on major oil site

* Al Qaeda attack on major oil facility stopped * Violence surging as insurgents step up bombings By Ahmed Rasheed BAGHDAD, May 30 (Reuters) - Iraq foiled an al Qaeda plot to use tanker trucks packed with explosives to attack a key Baghdad oil facility, a senior security official and oil sources said. The security official declined to name the facility because the investigation was underway but oil ministry officials said the security forces were on high alert following a spate of attacks on a northern pipeline. Protecting infrastructure for the world's fourth largest oil reserves is crucial for Iraq as it rebuilds an industry battered by years of war following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion and sanctions against former ruler Saddam Hussein. "We have arrested a key local leader of al Qaeda who organised the plan to launch a major attack against a large oil facility in Baghdad," a senior anti-terrorism official said. The security source said insurgents planned to pack explosives into tankers transporting crude oil from southern Basra oilfields to the main oil storage depots inside the major oil facility of Baghdad, where the bombs would be detonated. "They were planning to put in explosives and booby-trap more than one oil tanker," he said. Baghdad oil facilities include the large Doura refinery, East Baghdad oilfield, which currently has limited production of around 10,000 barrels per day to feed Doura, and a gas facility just north of the capital. Militants often target security forces, and Shi'ite and Sunni mosques, but attacks on major oil sites beyond pipeline bombings are rarer. A key pipeline from Iraq's northern oilfields around Kirkuk to the Turkish port of Ceyhan has been repeatedly attacked by militants over the last month. Gunmen attacked a gas field operated by Korea Gas Company in April, killing three local contractors. Violence has spiked since the start of the year as al Qaeda's local wing, the Islamic State of Iraq, and other Sunni Islamist insurgents stepped up attacks to try to stoke a widescale sectarian conflict. Iraq expects to boost its oil output to rival the level of top producer Saudi Arabia after awarding some of its most attractive oilfields to global oil companies, including BP , Shell and Exxon Mobil. Iraq Minister: Shale to Have Minimal Effect on Oil Demand by Dow Jones Newswires | Hassan Hafidh | Thursday, May 30, 2013 VIENNA - Rising U.S. shale oil production will have only minimal effect on demand for crude oil from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, meaning most members of the group want to leave their output ceiling unchanged at 30 million barrels a day, said Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Kareem Luaiby Thursday. OPEC members will discuss the selection criteria for choosing a new Secretary General at its meeting Friday and Iraq's candidate for the job, Thamer Ghadban, is still standing, Mr. Luaiby told reporters at a briefing in Vienna. Iraq will continue to increase its oil production to 3.525 million barrels a day by the end of this year, compared with 3.125 million barrels a day currently, Mr. Luaiby said. As part of talks aimed at lowering Iraq's long-term oil output target, but prolonging the period of highest production, the Iraqi government has agreed with Italian oil company Eni SpA to reduce the output target for the Zubair oil field to 850,000 barrels a day, from 1 million barrels a day previously, he said.

Moscow suggests missiles have yet to reach Assad

Moscow suggests missiles have yet to reach Assad Thu, May 30 20:27 PM EDT 1 of 15 By Mariam Karouny and Erika Solomon BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on Thursday Moscow was still committed to sending him advanced anti-aircraft weapons, although a source close to the Russian defense ministry said the missiles had yet to arrive. The prospect of the missiles arriving is a serious worry for Western and regional countries opposing Assad which have called on Moscow not to send them. The S-300 missiles would make it far more dangerous for Western countries to impose any future no-fly zone over Syrian air space, and could even be used to shoot down aircraft deep over the air space of neighbors like Israel or Turkey. The two-year-old civil war, which has killed more than 80,000 people, has reached one of its bloodiest phases with a counter-offensive by Assad's forces, backed openly by allies from neighboring Lebanon's Hezbollah Shi'ite militia. Syrian rebels under siege in Qusair near the Lebanese border pleaded for help on Thursday, warning that the strategic town they are struggling to hold faced total destruction. With Iran and Hezbollah rallying to Assad's defense and his Western-backed Syrian opponents mired in squabbles, the president sounded confident of his position.
Speaking to Hezbollah's al-Manar television, he said he would attend talks in Geneva convened by Washington and Moscow, but expected to keep fighting. By taking part in peace talks, Syria would effectively be negotiating with its international foes who back the opposition, he said: "When we negotiate with the slave we are actually negotiating with the master." A Lebanese newspaper earlier quoted Assad as saying in his al-Manar interview that Moscow had already sent a first shipment of missiles, although when the actual interview was broadcast Assad appeared to stop short of saying the missiles had arrived. "Everything we have agreed on with Russia will take place, and part of it has already taken place," he said, without giving further details.
Russia, which has supported Assad's family since the Cold War, says it will send the S-300 missiles in part to help prevent the West from imposing a no-fly zone. A source close to the Defense Ministry in Moscow said the "hardware itself" had not yet arrived, although the contract was being implemented. SURROUNDED Rebels in the besieged border town of Qusair warned that it could be wiped off the map and hundreds of their wounded might die if no help came soon. "The town is surrounded and there's no way to bring in medical aid," Malek Ammar, an opposition activist in the town, told Reuters over an Internet link, adding that about 100 of the 700 wounded needed bottled oxygen to keep breathing. "What we need them to do," he said of other rebel units, "is come to the outskirts of the city and attack the checkpoints so we can get routes in and out of the city". U.S., Russian and U.N. officials will meet on June 5 to make arrangements for a peace conference, known as "Geneva 2" after a first conference last year in the Swiss city, which produced an international agreement to set up a "transitional government" but no agreement on whether Assad would remain a part of it. If the latest U.S. initiative aims to win over Moscow to the position that Assad must leave power, it seems to have failed. Moscow spoke out on Thursday against the Syrian opposition's insistence on Assad's removal as a precondition for talks and criticized Washington for refusing to rule out imposing a no-fly zone to help the rebels. NEW INITIATIVE Washington has been pushing for the new diplomatic initiative, driven by worsening reports of atrocities committed by both sides, by allegations that chemical weapons have been used and by the emergence of al Qaeda allies among the rebels, raising worries that the West could be helping its own enemies. An exchange of fire across the Turkish border on Thursday was a reminder that all Syria's neighbors risk being sucked in to a regional conflict. Turkish police arrested 12 suspected terrorists in raids. Turkish media reported they were suspected members of the al Nusra front, a Syrian rebel force that has pledged allegiance to al Qaeda. Inside Syria, rebels at Qusair and comrades encircled near Damascus face shortages of weapons. Fears of the Islamists in the rebel ranks have deterred Western powers from supplying them, despite wanting to see Assad fall. The result, after two years of fighting and more than 80,000 deaths, has been an increasingly sectarian stalemate in which Assad has lost control of swathes of territory but remains in power. Taking back Qusair would secure the government's access to the coastline populated by Assad's minority fellow Alawites. For the rebels, mostly drawn from the Sunni Muslim majority, Qusair secures supply lines from sympathizers in Lebanon and from further afield, notably Sunni-ruled states in the Gulf. Rebel commanders at Qusair warned of dire consequences if help fails to arrive for men who have been fighting house to house for more than a week against a force armed with tanks and spearheaded by seasoned Lebanese fighters from Hezbollah. "If all rebel fronts do not move to stop this crime being led by Hezbollah and Assad's traitorous army of dogs ... we will soon be saying that there was once a city called Qusair," the commanders said in a statement. Shells were landing by the minute and the attackers seemed to be advancing more quickly after seizing a nearby air base. DIVISIONS Assad has benefitted from divisions among his foes, split between fighters inside Syria and exiles abroad, Islamists and liberals. Exiled members of the main opposition umbrella group, the Syrian National Coalition, have spent a week arguing in Istanbul over how to present a common front at the Geneva talks. Islamist and liberal wings of the opposition sought a compromise by offering liberals more seats on the body intended to form a transitional government. Groups fighting inside Syria demanded that they be granted half the seats. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Coalition seemed to be "doing everything they can to prevent a political process from starting ... and achieve military intervention". "We consider such approaches unacceptable," he said, referring to rebel pleas for Western weapons which persuaded Britain and France this week to end an EU arms embargo. His ministry also chided Washington for keeping open the possibility of a no-fly zone. That, it said, "cast doubt on the sincerity of the desire of some of our ... partners for success in international efforts" to end the war. (Additional reporting by Khaled Yacoub Oweis in Istanbul, Jonathon Burch and Humeyra Pamuk in Ankara and Thomas Grove, Steve Gutterman and Alissa de Carbonnel in Moscow; Writing by Peter Graff and Alastair Macdonald; Editing by Andrew Roche)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

A View on the Ankara-Erbil Energy Partnership

http://www.newsnow.co.uk/A/648036853?-12497:5915 in the last 10mins A View on the Ankara-Erbil Energy Partnership Why Washington and Baghdad Did Not Have Any Reaction to Ankara-Erbil Energy Partnership A few hours before leaving Ankara for a historic meeting to declare a Washington-Ankara partnership against the Assad regime, Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, made a last minute announcement that Turkey will pursue separate oil arrangements with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), in partnership with Exxon Mobil. Surprisingly, neither the US and nor Iraq condemned this partnership, despite it defying the central government in Baghdad. On May 14, 2013, before his flight to Washington, Erdogan made an announcement that shook regional dynamics. “Turkey’s state-owned oil firm will work with US giant Exxon Mobil to develop oil in the Kurdish-run area," he said. “We will develop our agreement with the regional government after our visit in Washington.” The US president and the Turkish prime minister had a historical meeting for the prospects of a region covering Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria. The meeting agenda’s main item was creating a unified strategy for Syria’s future. By making a direct agreement with the KRG just before this meeting, Erdogan has, in a way, imposed on Obama a pre-condition for their alliance and partnership. “Countries from various parts of the world are taking steps to explore and produce oil in different parts of Iraq, and then deliver it to world oil markets. There's nothing more normal, more natural than Turkey, which provides all kinds of support and aid to its next-door neighbor, to take a step that is based on mutual benefit,” Erdogan said to journalists asking about the reactions of Baghdad and Washington-based parties. Turkey’s oil imports from Northern Iraq seem to have entered the Erdogan-Obama meeting's agenda at the last minute. Indeed, Turkey’s minister of energy and natural resources, Taner Yıldız, (who was not on the initial delegation list) abruptly joined the other ministers accompanying Erdogan. With this last minute resolution, Turkey has defied both Washington and Baghdad. US authorities have warned several occasions that they do not support any independent energy deal with Erbil, as Baghdad and Erbil have not yet resolved a long-standing oil and gas revenue sharing legislation feud. Besides Washington and Baghdad, Erdogan's announcement also seems to have broken a tacit agreement with the KRG, which had been considering the deal, too sensitive to be announced publically before Erdogan visited Washington. However, no reaction came from Turkey’s announcement. No American authority criticized Turkey for not following their advice, nor did any Baghdad authority warn of the unconstitutionality of the agreement, nor did any Kurdish authorities make a remark on the timing being proactive. Baghdad and Washington’s espousal becomes even more unexpected when one remembers that earlier this year, when the Turkish-British joint venture Genel Energy delivered via truck the first shipment of crude oil from the KRG's Taq Taq oil field to Turkey’s Ceyhan port on the Mediterranean Sea (where it was shipped to the international market), John Kerry, the US secretary of state, warned Masoud Barzani, the KRG’s president, against concluding an agreement with Turkey or any other state in the face of Baghdad’s opposition. Baghdad, on its side, called the KRG’s agreement unconstitutional and threatened to sue companies exporting crude from the KRG, warning them that they must choose between investing in the country's southern fields or in its KRG-controlled northern ones. Erbil’s silence can be analyzed in the context of its demand to the Obama administration for Washington to remain neutral in this dispute with the Iraqi central government. Baghdad’s silence, meanwhile, makes sense in the context of the breakthrough achieved over the last several weeks. Early in May Kurdish lawmakers returned to Baghdad, opened a new process for an agreement amending Iraq’s 2013 budget and formend a committee to study the oil and gas law. Iraq’s oil and gas law has been stuck in parliament for years due to a lack of consensus. Last Sunday, a delegation from the Iraqi central government, headed by Falih al-Fayadh, the country's national security advisor, visited Erbil. Both sides emphasized the need to continue holding negotiations to settle all pending issues between Baghdad and Erbil. Considering the meeting between Obama and Erdogan, the US seems to remains close to Turkey because the Syrian situation may have a priority over Iraq’s economic and politic unity for the US agenda. During his statement, Erdogan did not give the name of the state-owned firm which will spearhead efforts in the KRG, but various sources suggest the Turkish Petroleum International Company (TPIC), an arm of state-run Turkish Petroleum (TPAO), will enter a partnership with the KRG and Exxon Mobil to explore and develop hydrocarbons in Exxon Mobil's six untapped blocks in Iraqi Kurdistan. While penetration of the TPIC is a state affair, the Turkish-British joint venture Genel Energy remains today the largest producer for the KRG. Last month, Genel also announced making a significant oil discovery in the KRG’s First Chia Surkh field. Despite this success, Genel is still unable to easily export--it averages about 45,000 barrels per day in oil production due to disagreements between the central and regional governments. As the largest producer in the KRG, Genel Energy has already stated its interest in investing in a separate pipeline to connect KRG oil fields with Turkey, independent of any control from Baghdad. In this context, the Turkish government's cooperation with Exxon Mobil (which arrived in the region only in two years ago) over Turkey-based Genel brings a new dimension to the relation of private companies to the state in the region's energy diplomacy. Olgu Okumuş is an affiliated lecturer in energy diplomacy at Sciences Po, Paris and director of strategy development at LEO Advisors. She is also PhD candidate at Sciences Po, Paris, where her research focuses on Turkey’s energy transit policy. She can be reached at olgu.okumus@leoadvisors.com http://www.naturalgaseurope.com/washington-baghdad-ankara-erbil-energy-partnership ========= GKP's house broker seems keen to get their 15% recovery factor out there based on the 15 degree API oil from the Middle Jurassic Sargelu. If it is a Shaikan 'look -a-like' assumption then we know roughly where recovery factors will be for the FDP on Shaikan's Middle Jurassic. Recovery factors appear to be higher (as you would expect) for the better quality oil circa 25api to 30api as noted in previous zones. With assisted recovery techniques (electric pumps etc) they rates could be enhanced to double those rates imho. 300m column - there has to be more to that than just the middle jurassic. Come on Hayward - spill the beans. HUB ========= You wait for RNS's like buses and two come along out of the blue. Interesting choice of words from Genel regarding future work on the licence... “We plan to begin a phased development of the field in the second half of this year." END. I'm not sure I would have used the word 'development' - appraisal yes - even further exploration. Could just be a 'phrase' but the implications near term are that BB is back on Genel's work programme after being absent across most of their presentations. So why the u-turn? What's changed? Have the KRG and their new consortium of US and Turkish friends decided that BB is required to ensure volumes are met across the set of new pipelines? One thing is certain - GKP would not have budgeted for any cash burn on BB in 2013 based on Genel's previous work schedule. 40% of capex costs on 'development' could be large. Especially if you have plans to drill a very expensive deep well in SH-7. Can't help but think the 3rd bus to come along will be the funding type. If it does happen I can't see it being at sub previous ii levels of 140p. Might explain why Capital decided to load up at sub 140p? Still - it's an excellent problem to have. More oil. But for a company GKP's size the reality of bringing 4 x licence blocks into full field development looks less and less likely. Shaikan is too large as it is for GKP to go it alone. Throw in BB and SA and it gets ridiculous. Hence - something has to be farmed out or sold. And shaikan is almost wrapped up and ready to be packed off. Well, perhaps not until SH-7 hits the 5000 level. It's beginning to look rosey again. HUB ======== mmm - analyst meeting at present onsite at Shaikan. TK announcing corp governance and ceo/chairman split. mmm - anyone would think that GKP are looking to go cap in hand again. CBonds might be tricky to agree whilst production issues remain tight due to KRG / Baghdad power games. Anyone interested in some of those 100mln shares approved at last AGM? I can't see the Board getting agreement on a new batch if they haven't touched the last issue. Mates rates before CC judgement? Now that would be criminal. HUB ============== Ber Bahr Commercial Discovery Gramacho; It is very good to hear of a discovery at BB. However, 2100 bpd at 40% WI is not exactly stellar stuff compared with other discoveries nearby and adds only minimally to the asset base. I would have thought more wells would be urgently required to provide meaningful aggregates. No matter; I have a question that relates to your remarks on field development timing. It would be a reasonable guess that the oil quality is similar to Shaikan and therefore the thorny question of sulphur removal comes into play. Have you heard anything about preparations for connecting to Shaikan's PFs ( spur or trucking ) or for otherwise orders for the long-lead and expensive Claus units that will be required? If this issue is not addressed I cannot see how Ber Bahr can meaningfully affect GKP's production figures ( via truck ) any time before late-2014. renardargente = Renardargente, I'm extremely busy at the moment (and for the next week), so my apologies for missing your 9am deadline. However, this is to inform you that I am pleased to accept your challenge and will take the other side of your bet, provided that I am also allowed to make minor modifications as follows: 1. The pipeline does of course not actually 'export' until it reaches the Turkish coast at Ceyhan - so let's slightly modify your 'bet' wording to the complete line specification: 'Shaikan Jurassic crude will not be 'mixed' with Genel Taq Taq light crude in the Taq Taq->Khurmala->Fish Khabur->Ceyhan export pipeline within the next 3 years'. 2. The loser will pay £5000 directly to DB's wife (rather than DB's charity). For the avoidance of doubt, you say 'no', I say 'yes' (to mixing of crude en-route to Ceyhan). BBBS === Oilman....... Balance is great........ What's the sulphur content like at BB ? If it exists how can Genel go into phased development THIS YEAR with such long lead items ? If it does exist, why have they not had the forethought to advance purchase ( they are oilmen, experts?) http://www.iii.co.uk/investment/detail?code=cotn%3AGKP.L&display=discussion&action=detail&id=10632371 IMO There are experts......and there are experts Some are here to help, others appear to be here to unbalance logical thinking Jack ======== Kenetic: JG actually says between 60% and 80% RF from the Jurassic fractures system, which will be the lions share of the Jurassic in Shaikan, with some recovery coming from the matrix. He says this approx. 10 minutes into his presentation which you can find on GKP's home page. How much oil is there in the Jurassic system, 12bbls mean of the 13.7bbls that we know of? Average 70% recoverable from the fracture system? * 54.3% WI = 4.5bbls to GKP? Cretaceous / Triassic? I won't mention SA/BB toby ================= Re: MGW on Twitter - Ren->Bet->On View parent message Out yesterday but seems the BB was busy... So we had a poster asking MGW if Shaikan & TT =TaqTaq crudes would ever be mixed in the Kurd to Turkey pipeline. Ren discredits it and anyone who believes it. Offers Bet: Ren Wed 17.48: "I'll lay a bet with you now that Shaikan Jurassic crude will not EVER be placed in the TT to FK=Fish Khabur, Khurmala pipeline mixed with Taq Taq crude. Do you want to take the bet?" Ren Wed 19.58: "You were talking about the only known intra-KRG pipeline; TT( Genel )->Khurmala->FK . MGW understood your question and replied with the CERTAINTY ( i.e. 'will' ) that the pipeline would accommodate Shaikan crude; being GKP's only production, by the only means possible by mixing it with TTOPCO crude; i.e. 'the crudes mix' " Ren Wed 20.20: "I even offered the word 'EVER' to give the very best chance"; "I will even limit my bet to to £5,000 to reduce your exposure" Gets a bet back from JD about GKP SP but doesn't want to detract from the point he is trying to make: Ren Wed 22.23.:"I only 'make bets' on those wagers I consider certainties. I am however willing to take big risks that I have it right. For example; I am certain that MGW's statements are BS and those that claim otherwise are at best 'misguided'. "It is precedent and simpler. Their 'expert' has said that there is room for Shaikan crude in the Taq Taq pipeline and that the crude WILL be mixed. C'mon - £5k !!" Ren Thu 08.29: "That is; these individuals do not have the courage of their supposed convictions. I am very willing to modify the bet to any level of their expenditure to lessen your 'bully boy' concern. " Then yesterday after months of absence, BBBS reappears, accepts with the following caveat:
BBBS Thu 16.57: "1. The pipeline does of course not actually 'export' until it reaches the Turkish coast at Ceyhan - so let's slightly modify your 'bet' wording to the complete line specification: 'Shaikan Jurassic crude will not be 'mixed' with Genel Taq Taq light crude in the Taq Taq->Khurmala->Fish Khabur->Ceyhan export pipeline within the next 3 years'."
Ren then refuses the bet on the following grounds at 18.57: "It is a very long way way from MGW's original assertion reference Shaikan crude and the TT->FK pipeline ( the source of the original bet ) to what you propose. Do you agree with MGW that Shaikan crude will be mixed on-site ( approx ) with Taq Taq crude and transported by the TT->FK pipeline? Because that is what was challenged. Answer please because you apparently did not want to take this original bet. An entirely different one is what you propose now of course and I am disappointed that you are underhand enough to submit it. Why stop at Ceyhan? Customs facilities are at borders for a reason - that is where exports occur unless there are bonding arrangements in-country" So sticking to the facts and the posters own words it appears to me that the pipeline has the following route for this new (& not yet complete) oil pipeline path to Turkey TT->>--XX->->-KH->->-YY->->-FK-WW->->-ZZ->->->-CY where TT is TaqTaq, KH is Khurmala, FK is Fishkabour, CY is Ceylan and XX & YY are potential or actual feed-in sites in Kurdistan and WW & ZZ the same in Turkey. So the original question was whether there would be mixing of Shaikan crudes into the TT to Turkey pipeline which Ren set a bet was completely untrue and BBBS took up the bet saying it would be true but clarified that by Turkey he meant the specified end point of this export pipeline (Ceylan) not simply where it crosses the Turkish border. IMO BBBS modification makes sense for several reasons: - export Crude is paid for on delivery in Ceylan (with transit fees to Turkey) NOT paid for simply getting it to FK. It is simply metered at FK. - the pipeline on the Turkish side is actually made up of at least two pipes (one needs repair) - we have previously heard that the export pipeline might be two different blends, one of which would contain a mix of heavy crude with lighter crudes - the heavy crude pipeline (for Shaikan oil) will likely be built to head straight towards Turkey so would never get mixed at TT but likely blended at a more geographically appropriate location. - as highlighted by the Platts Blog I put up yesterday (which Ren commented on as important), for various legal & political reasons, it may be necessary to have new Kurdish feed-ins to happen on the other side of the Turkish border (ie WW on my path above) So if I have understood correctly: - BBBS is saying there will be mixing of Shaikan heavy crude into the export pipeline somewhere along the route (but maybe be as late as point WW). - MGW said there would be pipeline mixing which Ren disputes in his Wed 17.48 bet. - Ren refused the bet as too different and now alleging it concerned mixing crudes at TT With all due respect Ren I don't see BBBS' clarification as modifying the bet as I know you are fully aware of the intricacies and to use your own words it was a simple bet about Shaikan crude being mixed into the export pipeline. You showed willingness to accommodate on amounts, adding side bets but did not want to distract from the main crux of the debate: crude mixing which is fair. So I see no difference in what BBBS proposed. Your bet was taken up in less than 24 hours which for many who only have time to check the boards once a day (some even less) seems fair. We all know where BBBS habitually resides and likely only is able to read the BB in UK mid afternoon time so he never would have been able to meet your 9am timeline. It appears you are backtracking to a crude mix point of TT as justification for your rejection but that was never mentioned by anyone so it does appear that you are backing out of the bet for a purely arbitrary missed deadline that was likely either impossible to meet by the few with the knowledge and deep pockets to meet your bet and if you truly believed it was a "certainty" (your words) then surely a few hours (less than a day remember) wouldn't make a difference. Especially as you must have known those with the knowledge to confidently answer (and with a high bet) do not have the time to sit on the BBs 24/7 answering every post that concerns them. The 120 to 6 post ticks should indicate what most of us think of this bet and you are seriously undermining your credibility by the way you have backtracked. KKO PS: I can't believe you brought DB into all this and then back out on an arbitrary technicality. =============== Author Bah Bah Black Sheep 2013-02-20 11:43 Re: BBBS RNS View parent message Hello MARKETCHASER, regarding "if you're out there and I suspect you are, do you fancy giving us your interpretation of todays RNS", my flippant answer would be 'put GKP on ignore' - and 'read the MOL Operational Update': http://ir.mol.hu/en/operational-update-kurdistan-region-iraq-%E2%80%93-oil-discovery-bakrman-well-akri-bijeel-block/ How times have changed! Three and a half years ago we were all accusing MOL of being 'the silent one' who seemed quite happy to put the occasional boot into little old GKP (remember the Shaikan-1 sidetrack 'issue' and their down-playing of Shaikan significance?). Today's RNS from GKP is an abysmal precis of the MOL update - several significants pieces of information are omitted, and I would even go as far as to say that the current and future testing plans on Bakrman-1 (the discovery well) have been mis-represented. IMO. The most glaring omissions by GKP are discussed further below: Bakrman-1: - GKP only specified results for the Second Open Hole test, and even there they could not be bothered to give a rough translation on the gas flow rate (I believe some posters have already queried this aspect). The answer is found in the MOL Update: "the Second Open Hole test of Bakrman exploration well resulted 2,616 bbl oil and 5.86 MMscfd (1,070 boepd) gas inflows." There you go - 5.86 MMscfd translates to 1,070 boepd. - GKP totally ignored the information provided by MOL concerning the First Open Hole test: "First Open Hole test was done in interval 3,811-3,932 m MD (measured depth) Kurra Chine A and B zones where total mud loss took place during drilling. The test produced 1464 bbl/d water with N2 lifting". This First Open Hole test was conducted ABOVE the Second Open Hole test - over an interval that comprised both Kurre China A and B (as opposed to just the Kurre Chine B for the Second test). It seems very strange that the deeper Second test recovered oil and gas - with no water - in the Kurre Chine B, when the First test produced just water over an interval that also included the Kurre Chine B. Actually, it's not very strange at all, the key words being "where total mud loss took place during drilling" - the produced water is most likely none other than the fluids that were lost during drilling. IMO. Holders of Shamaran will know that this would not be the first time that 'water tests' can be deceptive in a fractured mud loss setting (compare results from Atrush-1 and Atrush-2). I would imagine that MOL will be evaluating these results further. - GKP's RNS is mis-leading with regard to the fact that many more well tests are yet to be made at Bakrman. GKP merely states "The well testing programme is ongoing and is expected to be completed in April 2013". Whereas the MOL Update is quite specific with "Five further tests (one is optional) are planned in the well and the program is ongoing till April 2013". A massive difference (IMO). They are now performing Cased Hole tests, so these will be 'bottom-to-top' in the well. Consequently, the three unsuccessful Cased Hole tests to date (MOL: "Three Cased Hole DST have been perforated till now. There was no oil inflow some traces of gas and H2S were experienced.") would have been in the Lower Jurassic - most likely Butmah Formation - which is known to be less productive than the Upper Jurassic (refer Shaikan, Atrush etc). The main point being that there are still FIVE MORE TESTS TO GO - and at least some of these will be over Formations that are known to exhibit better flow properties in adjacent properties. Bijell-3 (Aqra-1): - The well title used by MOL (as above) as opposed to simply 'Bijell-3' by GKP already says a lot. The well location is some way from the original Bijell-1 discovery well; indeed it sits on the side of the Aqra anticline. GKP also omit a very pertinent remark that is stated twice within the MOL Update: "Bijell-3 appraisal well, which was the riskiest from a geological point of view in the planned appraisal program, moreover, it is the farthest one from the Bijell-1 discovery". I despair when posters like Hub just take the GKP RNS and then immediately write-off the entire Bijeel discovery as 'pants'. It would appear that even Zengas only read the GKP precis and not the source MOL document. In conclusion with regard to GKP's Akri Bijeel Update, they are clearly disinterested in 'current values' - there is still much more testing to do on Bakrman alone before the full extent of this latest discovery is known. And much more information will also be known on the true extent of the Bijell structure - 'soon' - at least within 2013 with four more wells going down. What was that previous carp about bringing in PW to sell AB about Todd? AB is far too valuable - to the buyer of GKP .... IMO. As for GKP's belated update on Shaikan activities? Yes, more of the same minimalist carp. IMO. Would it be so hard to say why SH-6 was dropped and SH-10 added for PF2? Why do PI's have to guess - that perhaps SH-6 was drilled too far down on the flank (in order to try and define OWC's that so far only Joseki has told us about) and is consequently unsuitable for a Production well that should ideally initially withdraw reservoir fluids from the top part of the structure? When are we going to get test results from SH-5? When are we going to get test - and OWC - results from SH-6? I guess we will just have to rely on Joseki's report on what the Institutions were told on 28th May 2012 - you know, that post which was deleted by iii without any explanation to the author. At least it was good to note that the latest production promises are now verifiable within a rather short period of time ... over to you Hawrami - is the Turkey nearly done? And another reference to the 'synergy' word when talking about Sheikh Adi and Shaikan ... nice. With ExxonMobil due to spud Al Qush-1 'imminently' (refer Western Zagros 'internal' map) there may be some more use of the 'synergy' word in the not too far distant future ... (please do look at that map, and note the alleged boundary of Shaikan compared to the shape of the SH-AQ anticlines). Maybe Al Qush-1 has been re-named SH-9 ? GLA, BBBS P.S. KRG rules - but Turkey over-rules - in more ways than one. That'll be 'that' post again ... one day .. maybe 'soon'. ==================

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Bush’s Invasion of Iraq was Criminal … Obama’s About to Do the Same Thing In Syria

Bush’s Invasion of Iraq was Criminal … Obama’s About to Do the Same Thing In Syria Posted on May 29, 2013 by WashingtonsBlog Bush Launched the Iraq War For Oil … Obama Is Launching the Syrian War for Natural Gas The former head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – the highest ranking military officer in the United States – said that the Iraq war was “based on a series of lies”. Many high-ranking military officials, top Republican leaders and key architects of the Iraq war said that the war was really about oil. And yet the American people haven’t seen any benefit … top oil economists have said that the Iraq war substantially raised the price of oil. The American government sold the Iraq war under false pretenses. Indeed, the American government planned the Iraq war long before 9/11. Former CIA director George Tenet said that the White House wanted to invade Iraq long before 9/11, and inserted “crap” in its justifications for invading Iraq. Former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill – who sat on the National Security Council – also says that Bush planned the Iraq war before 9/11. Top British officials say that the U.S. discussed Iraq regime change even before Bush took office. In 2000, Cheney said a Bush administration might “have to take military action to forcibly remove Saddam from power.” And see this and this. Indeed, neoconservatives planned regime change in Iraq 20 years ago. National security experts – including both hawks and doves – agree that waging war against Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries has weakened America’s national security and increased terrorism risks. See this, this, this, this, this, this, this and this. In fact, there was no Al Qaeda in Iraq until the U.S. invaded in 2003: Similarly, neoconservatives planned regime change in Syria 20 years ago. And carrying out acts of violence and blaming it on the Syrian government as an excuse for regime change – i.e. false flag terror – was discussed over 50 years ago by British and American leaders. And Western governments want regime change in Syria because of gas: Syria is an integral partof the proposed 1,200km Arab Gas Pipeline: Here are some additional graphics courtesy of Adam Curry: *** Syria’s central role in the Arab gas pipeline is … a key to why it is now being targeted. Just as the Taliban was scheduled for removal after they demanded too much in return for the Unocal pipeline, Syria’s Assad is being targeted because he is not a reliable “player”. Specifically, Turkey, Israel and their ally the U.S. want an assured flow of gas through Syria, and don’t want a Syrian regime which is not unquestionably loyal to those 3 countries to stand in the way of the pipeline … or which demands too big a cut of the profits. A deal has also been inked to run a natural gas pipeline from Iran’s giant South Pars field through Iraq and Syria (with a possible extension to Lebanon). And a deal to run petroleum from Iraq’s Kirkuk oil field to the Syrian port of Banias has also been approved: Turkey and Israel would be cut out of these competing pipelines. No wonder Turkey and Israel are both launching military strikes against Syria. On the other hand, Russia’s giant natural gas industry would be threatened if Syria’s current regime is toppled … no wonder Israel and Russia are getting into it over Syria. And the monarchies in Qatar and Saudi Arabia would also benefit as competitors in the gas market if Syria’s regime is taken out … so they’re backing the “rebels” as well. And the U.S. is heavily backing backed Al Qaeda terrorists in Syria. (even the New York Times reports that virtually all of the rebel fighters are Al Qaeda terrorists.) Indeed, the U.S. has been arming the Syrian opposition since 2006. And the U.S. is now considering imposing a no-fly zone over Syria … which was also the opening move in the wars against Iraq and Libya. Bush launched the Iraq war under false pretenses … similarly, the war in Syria is really being launched by Obama and natural gas players in the region who want to cut Syria and Russia out of the game. Postscript: If the corporate media were reporting more accurately on Syria than they did on Iraq, the American people would realize that there is grave doubt about who is most responsible for the violence, and who really used chemical weapons in Syria. Not that Assad is a saint, but he poses no danger to the United States, and shouldn’t be demonized and turned into a threat to American national security man any more than Saddam Hussein. The Iraq war will end up with a final price tag of between $5-6 trillion dollars. We simply can’t afford to get involved in another war … especially with Russia and Iran actively aligned against us. سومو: ايران بلد منافس ولا ننسق معها بشأن صادراتنا 29.05.2013 براء عفيف اعلن العراق زيادة صادراته النفطية الى الهند بنسبة 30 في المئة لتعويضها عن انفخاض وارداتها من النفط الايراني المتأثر بالعقوبات الدولية المفروضة على طهران. وقال مدير عام شركة تسويق النفط العراقية "سومو" فلاح العامري ان وزارة النفط ستعلن في الاول من حزيران عن مقدار تلك الصادرات بشكل مفصل، مؤكدا ان صادرات العراق ترتفع بشكل سنوي لدول اسيا. واثارت هذه الخطوة العديد من الاسئلة حول تأثيرها على العلاقات العراقية الايرانية. ونفى العامري وجود ايه اتفاقات مع الجانب الايراني بهذا الصدد، مشيرا الى ان للعراق علاقاته التجارية باعتباره احدى الدول الاعضاء في منظمة اوبك وان ايران بلد منافس للعراق. لكن استاذ العلوم السياسية في جامعة النهرين عامر حسن فياض يرى ان العلاقات مع الجانب الايراني متشعبة بصورة ايجابية متوقعا حدوت تفاهم بين الطرفين بشأن توريد النفط العراقي الى دول اسيوية طالما استفادت من النفط الايراني قبل العقوبات عليها. وكانت منظمة اوبك قد توقعت ان يغطي العراق نحو 45% من الطلب المتزايد على النفط في المرحلة المقبلة. ويجد المراقبون في فرض العقوبات الدولية على ايران فرصة مناسبة للعراق ممكن استثمارها لحصد المزيد من المكاسب في الاسواق العالمية. ويقول الخبير الاقتصادي هلال الطعان ان فرض العقوبات على الجانب الايراني ستفتح افاق جديدة للنفط العراقي وعلى العراق ان يستغل هذه الفرصة بشكل جيد خاصة وان العراق من اكبر الدول المصدرة للنفط في العالم. وتشكل الاسواق الاسيوية افاقا تجارية واعدة لصادرات النفط العراقي، يقول وزير النفط العراقي الاسبق ابراهيم بحر العلوم ان العراق اليوم بات يصدر 45 % نفطه الى الدول الاسيوية، وهو خط شروع قابل للتوسع. وتشكل صادرات العراق للهند البالغة 300 ألف برميل يومياً نسبة 11 إلى 12 % من إجمالي الاستهلاك المحلي الهندي. The Iraqi authorities and Eni have agreed to cut the final production target for the giant Zubair oil field in southern Iraq to 850,000 barrels a day, Iraq's Oil Minister says.

Barred from poll, Rafsanjani calls Iranian leaders ignorant

Thu, May 23 05:45 AM EDT By Marcus George and Yeganeh Torbati DUBAI (Reuters) - Former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has accused Iran's leadership of incompetence and ignorance just days after he was barred from standing in an election next month, the opposition Kaleme website reported on Thursday. Rafsanjani's comments appeared to add to the political conflict between those loyal to the leadership and opposition groups who have been marginalized since post-election unrest in 2009.
"I don't think the country could have been run worse, even if it had been planned in advance," Rafsanjani said to members of his campaign team on Wednesday, according to the Kaleme report. "I don't want to stoop to their propaganda and attacks but ignorance is troubling. Don't they understand what they're doing?"
Before he was disqualified from next month's presidential election, the 78-year-old Rafsanjani caused high interest in a ballot many believe was a race between hardliners. He attracted the endorsement of reformist groups whose leaders had disputed the re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Rafsanjani did not indicate specifically who he was addressing but after the unrest following Ahmadinejad re-election in 2009, he criticized the authorities heavy-handed response and has since been regarded as a threat to the establishment.
The two-term president warned of "dangerous" threats from the United States and Israel, which have threatened to use military action against what they suspect is Iran's development of nuclear weapons. He said he had not realized his candidacy would create a wave in the country but that it was a sign of people's despair. Now was the time to stay calm, he said. "In no instance should people despair. There will be a day when those who must come, will come," he said, an apparent reference to advocates for political and social reforms who have been sidelined.
With Rafsanjani and Ahmadinejad's close ally, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, now out of the picture, the election field is again dominated by hardliners loyal to Iran's clerical leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Rafsanjani's ally Hassan Rohani, a former nuclear negotiator, and reformist Mohammad Aref, remain in the contest.
Rafsanjani said the experiences of rebuilding the country after the Iran-Iraq war was one that was needed now. He was elected president in 1989, a year after the war ended, and his administration came to be called the "government of reconstruction", an era when economic rebuilding and reform put Iran back on its feet. "The foreigners called me "easy man" because it took no time before the doors opened. Now that experience could be easily used again, except back then, people were sympathetic." According to the report, Rafsanjani - regarded as one of the founding fathers of the Islamic Republic - said he should not have run. "There was a flood of letters and telephone calls from Najaf, Qom and Mashhad, all major clerics for my candidacy. How could I be so obstinate and say no to them, especially to the youth?"
Analysts say he was disqualified from the election because he campaign had already become hugely popular and he was regarded as a threat to the leadership. (Editing by Angus MacSwan) ======================================== Iran's Khamenei says has no favourite to succeed Ahmadinejad Wed, May 29 07:46 AM EDT * Ayatollah is supposed to be above political fray * Says has no favourite, but candidates already been vetted * Ahaminejad's successor to be elected next month By Yeganeh Torbati DUBAI, May 29 (Reuters) - Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Wednesday he does not favour any candidate for June's presidential election, although hardliners with outlooks similar to his dominate the field. The field of candidates was narrowed considerably last week when the Guardian Council, a body of clerics and jurists that vets all candidates, disqualified two independent contenders - former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, a close aide of current President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Reformists, who ran at the last election four years ago, have been largely excluded this time, with the leaders of the "Green movement", that protested against what they said was a rigged result, under unofficial house arrest for more than the last two years. Analysts say Khamenei is intent on seeing a loyal and docile candidate enter office after the unrest that followed the 2009 election. Though he initially had Khamenei's backing, Ahmadinejad challenged the supreme leader throughout his second term and has lost favour with the conservative establishment. Khamenei said on Wednesday that any notion that he had a favourite to win this time was wrong. "These things have always been said and it's not true, because no one knows who the leader will vote for," Khamenei said in a speech to parliamentarians, according to his website. "Just like everyone else, the leader only has one vote." Although supposedly above the fray of everyday politics, Khamenei endorsed Ahmadinejad's disputed victory in 2009. The months of protests that followed were eventually crushed by security forces. Iran's leaders have always denied vote rigging and said the unrest had been fomented by the country's foreign enemies that want to see an end to the Islamic Republic system of government. FRONTRUNNER Khamenei directly appoints six of the Guardian Council's 12 members, and analysts say he has a direct influence in who gets to run. The final list of eight candidates approved by the council includes Saeed Jalili, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator who once worked in Khamenei's office; Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel, a close aide and relative of Khamenei; and Ali Akbar Velayati, a foreign policy advisor to the supreme leader. Jalili, who has overseen a hardening in Iran's position in nuclear talks with world powers, has emerged as a frontrunner, with the backing of the conservative establishment. He gained the endorsement on Tuesday of senior cleric and ultraconservative Ayatollah Mohammad Taqi Mesbah-Yazdi, who served as a religious mentor to Ahmadinejad but has since turned against the president, who fell out of favour with the clerical elite during his second four-year term. Mesbah-Yazdi's followers have great sway among Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards and the Basij volunteer paramilitary force. In his speech on Wednesday, Khamenei thanked those who had been rejected by the Guardian Council and had chosen to "obey the law". That could be read as a veiled criticism of Ahmadinejad who said he hoped the bar on his aide Mashaie running for president would be overturned before the election. (Editing by Marcus George and Robin Pomeroy) ============= U.S. casts doubt on credibility of Iran election Fri, May 24 13:18 PM EDT By Arshad Mohammed TEL AVIV (Reuters) - The United States on Friday called into question the credibility of Iran's presidential election next month, criticizing the disqualification of candidates and accusing Tehran of disrupting Internet access. On a visit to Israel, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry also warned that time was running out to resolve the deadlock over Iran's contested nuclear program. Iran's Guardian Council, the state body that vets all candidates, has barred a number of hopefuls from the roster in the June 14 ballot, including former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who is seen as sympathetic to reform. "The Council narrowed a list of almost seven hundred potential candidates down to...officials of their choice, based solely on who represents the regime's interests," Kerry said shortly before flying out of Israel. "That is hardly an election by standards which most people in most countries judge free, fair, open, accessible, accountable elections." Most of the remaining eight men left on the Iranian ballot are seen as loyalists to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Kerry, whose country's decades-old rift with Iran has widened over the latter's nuclear ambitions, said Washington saw "troubling signs" that the Iranian government was slowing down or cutting off Internet access to its citizens. "Ultimately the Iranian people (will) be prevented not only from choosing someone who might have reflected their point of view, but also taking part in a way that is essential to any kind of legitimate democracy," he said. Israel and most Western powers, including the United States, believe Iran is seeking to obtain nuclear weapons - something Tehran has denied. Israel, which is assumed to have its own nuclear arsenal, has warned it might attack Iran if it does not halt its atomic work, but Kerry said he hoped a diplomatic solution could still be found. "Our hope is, for the sake of the region, the world, the Iranian people, ourselves, that we can have a peaceful resolution, but it is going to have to be demonstrated much more affirmatively than it has been to date that Iran is interested in that kind of a solution," he said. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said this week in a report that Iran was trying to accelerate its uranium enrichment program. "The clock is clearly ticking," Kerry added. (Reporting by Arshad Mohammed; Writing by Crispian Balmer) (This story is refiled to fix typo in headline) =========================== Iran's rulers risk alienating voters by candidate bans Wed, May 22 08:51 AM EDT By Yeganeh Torbati and Marcus George DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran's clerical rulers may have sought to remove any challenge to their grip by barring two vivid contenders from next month's presidential election, but they risk alienating voters already disillusioned by the violent aftermath of the 2009 poll. The June 14 vote will have little bearing on the policies that have long put Iran at odds with the West - ranging from its nuclear program to its support for Syria's President Bashar al-Assad and Lebanon's Shi'ite Hezbollah guerrillas. These will remain firmly under the control of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has refused to curb sensitive atomic work despite crippling Western sanctions and Israeli and U.S. threats of military action. Iran denies seeking nuclear weapons. Yet Iran's rulers have always seen a high election turnout, as underpinning their legitimacy - hence the danger of voiding them of any credibility in the eyes of voters by using the many institutional levers available to limit free democratic choice. The Guardian Council, a vetting body, disqualified ex-President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, despite his hefty political role in the past three decades, as well as Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's former chief of staff, leaving a field dominated by hardliners loyal to Khamenei. Ahmadinejad said on Wednesday he would ask Khamenei to reverse the ban on Mashaie. Rafsanjani, a pillar of the 1979 Islamic Revolution who has held a series of powerful positions in the past, will not appeal, his campaign chief said. Barring surprises, their elimination sets the stage for a Khamenei loyalist from the "principlist" camp to win - and will disappoint many Iranians, notably those from urban and middle-class backgrounds, who had hoped for a more open contest. "I feel indifferent," said a 33-year-old dissident journalist in Tehran who gave his name only as Hamed. "Most people feel the same as long as they don't have a say in the political arena, as long as the authorities are running the election and can rig the votes at will and as long as the ruling system can filter candidates at their own discretion." STAYING AT HOME A 27-year-old translator named Firouzeh said she had been undecided about whether to vote. "Thanks to the Guardian Council for disqualifying Hashemi (Rafsanjani). Now I can stay home on election day without any doubts," she said sarcastically. Khamenei is seen as wanting a more docile president than the turbulent populist Ahmadinejad, who had often challenged his authority, even though he had endorsed his divisive re-election. In theory the supreme leader could reinstate the two high-profile challengers in the race, but this seems unlikely. "Khamenei surely signaled to the Guardian Council ... that he did not want Rafsanjani or Mashaie to run," said Cliff Kupchan of Eurasia Group, a political risk consultancy. "The leader wants a pliant president and a calm election." Ahmadinejad's 2009 triumph in a vote his opponents said was rigged led to the worst popular unrest in the Islamic Republic's history, severely damaging the ruling system's credentials. Rafsanjani earned hardliners' wrath at the time for criticizing authorities' treatment of protesters. His last-minute entry into the presidential race had already captured the interest of Iranian voters - something which may have prompted the decision to nip his candidacy in the bud. "I was really surprised by the ferment and the (pro-Rafsanjani) wave of joy that broke out in the country, and in my opinion this wave upset the principlists," Tehran University professor Sadeq Zibakalam told Asr-e Iran daily on Tuesday. Eshaq Jahangiri, head of Rafsanjani's campaign, was quoted in ISNA news agency on Wednesday as saying the veteran politician would not object to the Guardian Council's decision. Rafsanjani was a close associate of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, founder of the Islamic Republic, whose daughter has voiced dismay at the ban on her late father's one-time aide. "This act has no meaning other than creating a separation between two companions of the Imam (Khomeini) and a disregarding of the enthusiasm and interest of the people towards the system and the elections," Zahra Mostafavi wrote in a letter on the Jamaran news site, thought to be linked to Khomeini's family. "The gradual separation between the two of you (Khamenei and Rafsanjani) will be the biggest blow to the revolution and the system," she wrote. "The Imam always said: 'These two are good when they are together'." AHMADINEJAD'S OPTIONS Ahmadinejad, who cannot run for a third consecutive term himself, said he would challenge the ban on Mashaie, calling him a "righteous person and beneficial for the country", ISNA said. Ahmadinejad has in the past threatened to reveal evidence of corruption by his rivals, though analysts said any such challenge to the ruling establishment would carry grave risks. "The institutional leverage available to the supreme leader and his allies will outweigh any evidence or anything that Ahmadinejad and his team have up their sleeve," said Yasmin Alem, a U.S.-based expert on Iran's electoral system. Hardliners loathe Mashaie, seeing him as figurehead of a "deviant" nationalist current bent on undermining clerical rule. Nevertheless, Ahmadinejad, an ambitious, fiery figure, seems reluctant to see his own political power eclipsed. The former Revolutionary Guard commander is thought to remain popular with many poorer Iranians, especially in the provinces, who have benefited from his cash handouts and local development projects. Two prominent reformists, former nuclear negotiator Hassan Rohani and Mohammad Reza Aref, a former vice-president under ex-President Mohammad Khatami, remain in the race but they lack the charisma and organization to make much impact, according to Ali Ansari, an Iran analyst at St Andrew's University in Scotland. He said Saeed Jalili, Iran's current nuclear negotiator, was emerging as the frontrunner among Khamenei loyalists who also include Tehran mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf and former Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati. "Basically Jalili is the man to beat, this is how the script is intended to go now," Ansari said. "A nice, tidy election unless Ahmadinejad chooses to do something disruptive." The defeated opposition candidates in the 2009 election, Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karoubi, are under house arrest and their "Green Movement" has been cowed and suppressed. France said their fate showed that Iran's elections would be held in a "climate of growing repression" and criticized the bans imposed by the Guardian Council on would-be candidates. This "shows the extent the Iranian system is bolted", said Foreign Ministry spokesman Philippe Lalliot. "The eligibility criteria undeniably lacks transparency." ================== Pressure Mounts for Iran’s Moderate Candidates to Unite Posted on June 6, 2013 by Arash Karami With eight days left before the June 14 election and the unpredictable nature of Iranian presidential politics, Reformists and moderates have been exerting pressure on Mohammad Reza Aref and Hassan Rouhani to unite. Some fear that if Aref and Rouhani fail to unite, their votes there could be a repeat of 2005 election that brought the hard-line Ahmadinejad to power. Motahhareh Shaffei wrote in Arman newspaper that “It wasn’t that long ago in the 2005 election when the Reformists felt they didn’t need the support of Rafsanjani,” adding, “However, today the Reformists have felt that the country needs other elements … and despite their own political views, have decided to support a moderate candidate.” Well-known Reformists have essentially been sidelined from the political scene in Iran and some believe that supporting a so-called moderate candidate is the best path for them to achieve some of their goals. Shaffi wrote that of the potential candidates Reformists could support, “One is Hassan Rouhani and the other is Mohammad Reza Aref. Both are moderates and have taken the middle path, and no extreme action has been seen from either one of them.” On Monday, while campaigning in Iran’s Gazvin province, Aref, who was Khatami’s first vice president in Khatami’s second term and the minister of technology under Khatami’s first term, said of the possibility of building a coalition, he would “listen to Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani and Mohammad Khatami’s final opinion on the matter.” However, that same day, he told Mehr News in response to the possibility of a coalition that “A lot of news is published on this matter but I have no intention of doing this, and I will remain until the end of the election race.” On Tuesday, Mohammad Reza Nematzadeh, a member of Aref’s campaign staff, denied rumors that Aref would step aside in favor of Rouhani. Aref, who upon registering for the presidency said that he would pull out if Rafsanjani or Khatami decided to run, also complained about the last-minute nature of Iranian presidential politics. “Nowhere in the world do you see with one day left to register for the election, that there would be such big changes” Aref said. Aref continued, “Everywhere in the world, political parties introduce themselves, their policies and their staff one year before the elections. … Rafsanjani’s registration put all of my campaigning to rest and after 11 days [when the Guardian Council disqualified him], we began our campaigning again. Under these conditions, how can one expect us to talk about our activities and our cabinet?” Rafsanjani, Ahmadinejad ally Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei and Saeed Jalili all registered on May 12 for the presidential election, the final day of the one-week window, which is approximately one month before the June 14 election. On Sunday, Mohammad Ali Najafi said that that the coalition of Reformist groups had created a seven-member panel that would “negotiate with some of the leaders of the country and the two candidates under consideration (Aref and Rouhani) toward a coalition, and based on polling across the country, to create the necessary environment and mechanisms for a consensuses and coalition.” Najafi, who introduced himself as the spokesman for this panel, said, “When we reach a final decision, we will announce our single candidate on Saturday.” Neither Rafsanjani nor Khatami have endorsed a candidate in this election yet. It is not certain that they will. However, Khatami’s website did issue a statement from a council of Khatami’s advisers on Sunday that encouraged Rouhani and Aref to reach a coalition. ==============