In a dangerous game

October 14, 2019 00:30 am

Unless the rest of the world gets involved, the dangerous game the US and Iran are playing could end in direct confrontation

DUBAI, Oct 1: Iranian courts have sentenced one person to death for spying for the United States and jailed two others for 10 years for the same crime, as well as imprisoning a fourth person for 10 years for spying for Britain, a judiciary spokesman said on Tuesday.

DUBAI, Sept 25: Iran is willing to give reassurances on not seeking nuclear arms and accept changes to its 2015 nuclear accord with world power if the United States returns to the deal and lifts sanctions, a government spokesman said on Wednesday.

DUBAI, UAE, Sept 19: Iran’s top diplomat said Thursday that any attack on his country over a drone-and-missile strike on Saudi Arabia’s oil industry will result in “all-out war,” further pushing up tensions across the Persian Gulf.

ZURICH, Sept 19: FIFA president Gianni Infantino has told Iran it is time to allow women into football stadiums and the global soccer body expects “positive developments” starting with their next home match in October.

TEHRAN, IRAN, Sept 17:  Iran’s supreme leader announced on Tuesday that “there will be no talks with the U.S. at any level” — remarks apparently meant to end all speculation about a possible U.S.-Iran meeting between the two countries’ presidents at the U.N. later this month.

WASHINGTON, Sept 16: U.S. President Donald Trump said on Sunday the United States was “locked and loaded” for a potential response to the attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil facilities, after a senior U.S. administration official said Iran was to blame.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, Sept 15: A weekend drone attack on Saudi Arabia that cut into global energy supplies and halved the kingdom’s oil production threatened Sunday to fuel regional tensions, as Iran denied U.S. allegations it launched the assault and tensions remained high over Tehran’s collapsing nuclear deal with world powers.

DUBAI, Sept 15: Iran denied on Sunday it was involved in Yemen rebel drone attacks the previous day that hit the world’s biggest oil processing facility and an oil field in Saudi Arabia, just hours after America’s top diplomat alleged that Tehran was behind the “unprecedented attack on the world’s energy supply.”

DUBAI, Sept 7: Iran’s coast guard has seized a vessel for allegedly smuggling fuel in the Gulf and detained its 12 crew members from the Philippines, the semi-official news agency ISNA reported.

Remembrance is what makes memories alive throughout life. A mix-media exhibition ‘Space A’ by Iranian artists Farshid Davoodi, Maryam Ashkanian and Sima Shahmoradi began on August 28 at Siddhartha Art Gallery, Baber Mahal Revisited.

DUBAI, Sept 2: Iran is prepared to take a “stronger step” in reducing its commitments under the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers if European countries don’t take action to save the pact, its foreign ministry’s spokesman said on Monday.

TEHRAN, Iran, Sept. 2: Iran will “take a strong step” away from its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers if Europe cannot offer the country new terms by a deadline at the end of this week, a government spokesman said Monday as top Iranian diplomats traveled to France and Russia for last-minute talks.

DUBAI, Aug 27: Iran will not talk to the United States until all sanctions imposed on Tehran are lifted, President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday, a day after President Donald Trump said he would meet his Iranian counterpart to try to end a nuclear standoff.

Aug 26: From the vast deserts of Saudi Arabia to the crowded neighborhoods of Beirut, a drone war has taken flight across the wider Middle East, raising the stakes in the ongoing tensions between the U.S. and Iran.

JERUSALEM, Aug 23: Israel was responsible for the bombing of an Iranian weapons depot in Iraq lost a month, U.S. officials have confirmed, an attack that would mark a significant escalation in Israel’s years-long campaign against Iranian military entrenchment across the region.

UNITED NATIONS, Aug 21: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday that greater cooperation and “fresh thinking to solve old problems” are needed in the Middle East — but he also condemned Iran and its proxies for continuing “to foment terror and unrest” in the region.

TEHRAN, Aug 21: Iran’s president sent a bill to parliament Wednesday that would cut four zeroes from the value of the Islamic Republic’s sanctions-battered currency, the rial, as tensions remain high between Tehran and Washington.

HELSINKI, Aug 19:  Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday said Iran is not interested in talks with Washington, but any mediation should focus on bringing the United States back to the 2015 nuclear deal which it left last year.

LONDON/GIBRALTAR, August 15: The United States has applied to seize the Iranian Grace 1 tanker in Gibraltar commandeered by British Royal Marines in the Mediterranean last month, complicating a possible tanker swap between Britain and the Islamic Republic.

DUBAI, August 12: Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused the United States on Monday of turning the Gulf region into a “matchbox ready to ignite”, according to Al Jazeera television.

Trump’s failed Iran policy

August 11, 2019 01:30 am

Trump’s biggest problem is that the other signatories to the 2015 nuclear agreement from which he has withdrawn the United States, have remained committed to the deal

DUBAI, Aug 5: Iran will no longer turn a blind eye to “maritime offenses” in the Gulf, its foreign minister said on Monday, a day after it seized an Iraqi oil tanker there that it accused of smuggling fuel.

DUBAI, August 3:  Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps has seized a foreign oil tanker in the Gulf that was smuggling fuel to some Arab states, Iran’s state TV reported, adding that seven sailors onboard of the tanker had been detained.

DUBAI, August 1: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused the United States of “childish behavior” and acting out of fear on Thursday after Washington imposed sanctions on Iran’s foreign minister amid rising tensions between the two countries.

VIENNA, July 28: An emergency meeting with parties to Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with major powers was “constructive”, Iranian official Abbas Araqchi said on Sunday, but said Tehran would continue to reduce its nuclear commitments if Europeans failed to salvage the pact.

NEW DELHI, July 27:  Iran has freed nine Indian crew members of a Panama-flagged tanker it seized this month, the Indian foreign ministry said on Saturday, and it appealed for the release of three remaining crew members held from the same ship.

BRUSSELS, July 23: Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China will meet Iran in Vienna on July 28 to discuss how to save the 2015 nuclear deal, the EU’s foreign policy service said in a statement on Tuesday.

FRANKFURT, July 20: Germany on Saturday condemned the “unjustifiable” seizure by Iran of two merchant ships in the Strait of Hormuz and said the move dangerously exacerbated an already tense situation in the area.

LONDON/DUBAI, July 20:  Britain said Iran seized two oil tankers in the Gulf on Friday and told Tehran to return the vessels or face consequences in the latest confrontation to ratchet up tension along a vital international oil shipping route.

LONDON, July 20: British foreign minister Jeremy Hunt said on Saturday that he was worried that Iran had taken a “dangerous path” after it seized a British-flagged tanker on Friday in the Strait of Hormuz.

LONDON, July 20:  Iran seized a British-flagged oil tanker Friday and briefly detained the second vessel in the Strait of Hormuz, intensifying tensions in the strategic waterway that has become a flashpoint between Tehran and the West.

WASHINGTON, July 19: The United States said on Thursday that a U.S. Navy ship had “destroyed” an Iranian drone in the Strait of Hormuz after the aircraft threatened the vessel, but Iran said it had no information about losing a drone.

GENEVA/WASHINGTON, July 18: The increased use of drones by Iran and its allies for surveillance and attacks across the Middle East is raising alarms in Washington.

UNITED NATIONS, July 17: The United States has tightly restricted the travel of more than a dozen Iranian diplomats and their families living in New York, according to a U.S. diplomatic note to sent to the Iran mission to the United Nations and seen by Reuters on Tuesday.

DUBAI, July 16:  Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Tuesday Iran would continue to reduce its commitments under its nuclear deal, accusing European partners of not fulfilling their obligations.

DUBAI, July 13: Iran called on Britain on Friday to immediately release an oil tanker that British Royal Marines seized last week on suspicion it was breaking European sanctions by taking oil to Syria, a foreign ministry spokesman told state news agency IRNA.

TEHRAN, July 10: The Latest on the tensions between the U.S. and Iran (all times local):

VIENNA, July 10: The United States will use an emergency meeting of the U.N. nuclear watchdog’s board on Wednesday to raise pressure on Iran over breaches of its nuclear deal, but diplomats expect no concrete action as parties to the deal consider their next move.

July 10: Iran welcomes France’s efforts to save the 2015 nuclear deal, Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Wednesday, as French President Emmanuel Macron’s top diplomatic adviser visits Tehran for talks to help ease the crisis.

Iranian metal guerrillas Confess have been sentenced to 14 1/2 years in prison by the Revolutionary Tribunal of Tehran. For the crime of playing metal, frontman Nikan Khosravi has also been sentenced to 74 lashes.

TEHRAN, July 8: Iran began enriching uranium Monday to 4.5%, breaking the limit set by its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, semi-official news agencies in the country reported.

TEHRAN, July 8:  Iran increased its uranium enrichment Sunday beyond the limit allowed by its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, inching its program closer toward weapons-grade levels while calling for a diplomatic solution to a crisis heightening tensions with the U.S.

DUBAI, July 7: Iran said on Sunday it would further scale back its commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, raising its uranium enrichment level beyond agreed levels to produce fuel for power plants.

LONDON/DUBAI, July 6: An Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander threatened on Friday to seize a British ship in retaliation for the capture of an Iranian supertanker by Royal Marines in Gibraltar.

PARIS, July 3: Iran will gain nothing by departing from the terms of its nuclear agreement, the French foreign ministry said on Wednesday, responding to Tehran’s announcement that it will boost the enrichment level of its uranium.

DUBAI/VIENNA July 1: Iran announced on Monday it had amassed more low-enriched uranium than permitted under its 2015 deal with major powers, its first major step in violation of the deal since the United States pulled out of it more than a year ago.

VIENNA, June 28: World powers will warn Iran to stick to the terms of their nuclear deal when they meet on Friday for “last chance” talks, but with Tehran feeling the pressure from punishing U.S. sanctions expectations of saving the 2015 accord are low, diplomats say.

VIENNA, June 28: Senior officials from Iran and the remaining signatories to its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers are gathering in Vienna Friday as tensions in the Persian Gulf simmer and Tehran is poised to surpass a uranium stockpile threshold, posing a threat to the accord.

OSAKA, June 27: Trade and geopolitical tensions, and the looming threat of climate change, are on the agenda as the presidents of the United States and China and other world leaders gather in Osaka, Japan, for a summit of the Group of 20 major economies.