Iran Update
Volume: 1 - Issue:  2416 April 2010
Iran Update
Dear Friend,

We are delighted to present you with the current issue of Iran Update, a publication of International Solidarity for Democratic Change in Iran (ISDCI).    
Execution sentence for a female Ashura protester 
ISDCI
15 April 2010

According to reports from Iran, an Ashoura day protestor, Motahareh Bahrami, who was arrested during the Ashura protests on 27 December 2009, has been sentenced to death. Mrs. Bahrami was detained in ward 209 of Evin prison for a period of time with Baha'i prisoners and then with journalists. She is currently detained in the female's ward of Evin prison. Motahareh Bahrami was arrested along with her husband Mohsen Daneshvar, her son Mehdi Daneshvar, and a friend Reyhaneh Haj Ebrahimi. Bahrami has been accused of connections with the Mujahedin Khalgh (PMOI) and was sentenced to death.

Iran's ticking bomb 
The Wall Street Journal
Alejo Vidal-Quadras
15 April 2010

...Engagement with Iran has been based on the false premise that the mullahs would respond to carrots and somehow act in Iran's national interest. In diplomacy, there is only one thing more dangerous than failing to respond firmly to threats to international security, and that is threatening to respond firmly, but failing to follow through. The Iranian regime knows now, if it had any doubts before, that the international community lacks the courage or conviction to confront its nuclear program.
One reason why our leaders pursued a policy of appeasement toward Iran over the past decade was that they argued, falsely, that the only alternative was a military attack on Iran. Biting sanctions, though, could have and still could work. Of course, a military confrontation with Iran would be devastating for its 70 million people. But allowing the regime to gain weapons of mass destruction could in the end be even more devastating for Iran and the entire region if it triggered a wider war. Engaging the mullahs only had the effect of legitimizing them and extending their brutal reign.
It is time for Europe and the United States to redouble their efforts for winning as broad a coalition as possible for biting sanctions that stand a chance of changing the regime's behavior. Equally important will be to politically support the opposition and the millions of brave Iranians marching on the streets and demanding change and democracy. Summits in Washington are fine, but Iran is moving much faster than that. So we'd better catch up.
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Zahra Asadpour Gorji, ailing female prisoner taken to unknown location
PMOI Website
15 April 2010
According to reports, political prisoner Zahra Asadpour Gorji was taken to an unknown location yesterday from Gohardasht Prison in Karaj.
This 51 year old political prisoner was transferred from the women's cellblock on April 11 to an unknown location. Her condition had become critical in the past few days to the point that she was not able to move the left side of her body and had nose bleeds. Before the new years break, doctors in the prison infirmary had requested an urgent medical leave for her critical heart problems but Mohebi, the head intelligence interrogator prevented her leave and told Mrs. Gorji that 'I will only agree with your corpse leaving this prison'. This political prisoner went on a hunger strike for more than six days in protest to the psychological pressure and threats of this interrogator against her, her family and her jailed son, Reza Jushan.
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Thinking creatively about Iran policy
Democracy Arsenal
Joel Rubin
14 April 2010
When President Obama and his foreign policy advisors took office last year, one of the most pressing items on the agenda was the challenge coming from Iran. That country, which had been the subject of American economic sanctions and diplomatic isolation for more than three decades, had grown increasingly powerful and aggressive during the Bush administration and was central to a variety of regional and international issues of vital concern to the United States. Creative action was needed...
Yet in an almost surreal policy dance that could only be choreographed in Washington, the changes in Iran, instead of shaking up the policy community, only served to reinforce its long held assumptions. For the sanctions advocates, their efforts intensified, as they used the street protests to justify tougher action against the regime. For the war hawks, they more aggressively argued that military force was inevitable, as a murderous regime could not be trusted to make a diplomatic deal. And for the foreign policy realists, they chose to ignore the fact that people were dying in the streets, viewing this as an inconvenience to potential deal making with the regime.
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US sees 'urgency' to new UN sanctions on Iran
AFP
14 April 2010

WASHINGTON - The United States seeks a new wave of UN sanctions on Iran "with a sense of urgency", a top US diplomat said Wednesday, while warning that even punishing measures will not sway Iran "overnight."
And "the process of getting consensus" in the UN Security Council is "always challenging," cautioned Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns said in a prepared statement to the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Faced with Iran's defiance of world pressure to freeze its suspect nuclear program, "we are moving with a sense of urgency toward a new UN Security Council resolution," Burns said.
"We are working aggressively to adopt concrete measures that will serve as a platform to strengthen and expand upon existing sanctions and target the power centers mostly likely to have an impact on Iran's strategic calculus," he said.
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McCain: Time to 'pull the trigger' with Iran
Associated Press
14 April 2010

WASHINGTON - Senator John McCain says the United States has been backing away from a brewing fight with Iran, while that country moves ever closer to having nuclear weapons.
McCain opened a Senate hearing Wednesday by saying that Iran will get the bomb unless the United States acts more boldly.
Speaking figuratively, the Arizona Republican says the U.S. keeps pointing a loaded gun at Iran but failing to "pull the trigger."
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Thank you for your reading Iran Update. We welcome your comments. 
 
 
Sincerely,
 
ISDCI News Group
In This Issue
Execution sentence for a female Ashura protester
Iran's ticking bomb
Zahra Asadpour Gorji, ailing female prisoner taken to unknown location
Thinking creatively about Iran policy
US sees 'urgency' to new UN sanctions on Iran
McCain: Time to 'pull the trigger' with Iran
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Putting Human Rights
First
We invite you to write to your national government officials to ask them to freeze all commercial and diplomatic ties with the Iranian regime until there is a full stop to repression of protests in Iran, release of political prisoners and respect for human rights as demanded in the recent UN Human Rights Council session.