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UPDATE: 9:00 PM CET
Va. Man, 72, Gets 41 Months in Prison for Violating Iran Sanctions
A 72-year-old Virginia man was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison Tuesday after pleading guilty to violating U.S. sanctions against Iran. Behrouz Mokhtari of McLean, Virginia, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Iran, conspired to engage in prohibited business activities on behalf of people and entities in Iran, the Department of Justice said in a news release. Mokhtari also was ordered to forfeit $2,862,598 in criminal proceeds and a residence he purchased in Campbell, California, for more than $1.5 million, the DOJ said.
UPDATE: 1:00 PM CET
Water Crisis Deepens in Iran: 16 Dams with Less Than 50% Capacity, Some Completely Empty
Official statistics indicate that 16 dams in Iran currently have less than 50% of their water capacity. The dams in the northern Golestan province are reported to be completely empty, while the Rudbar dam in the central Fars province holds only “two million cubic meters” of water.
According to information from the “Office of Water Information and Data” affiliated with the Iranian regime’s Ministry of Energy, several dams are experiencing low levels, with the percentages of capacity in dams of Panzdah-e Khordad (Ghomroud basin), Sabalan (Ardabil), Setareh Khan (East Azerbaijan), Agh Chay (West Azerbaijan), Esteghlal, Shamil and Nian, and Sornay (Hormozgan), Shirin Darreh (North Khorasan), Tangouyeh and Nesa (Kerman), and Saveh (Markazi) all being below “50 percent.”
Additionally, the water wells in Sistan and Baluchestan province have also reached a critically low level at only “five percent” capacity.
Despite some scattered and seasonal rainfall in recent years, Iran is currently facing its third consecutive year of drought. The National Meteorological Organization had previously announced that “100 percent” of the areas in Alborz, Yazd, and Semnan provinces are experiencing drought conditions.
The mismanagement of water resources and the ongoing water crisis pose significant and serious challenges in different regions of Iran. Mustafa Fadaie Fard, the head of the specialized committee responsible for assessing floods at the “National Committee for Large Dams of Iran,” expressed concerns in September 2021 about the lack of a comprehensive and dependable water plan. He warned that large areas of Iran are susceptible to “land subsidence,” and as a result, approximately “37 million” people may be forced to migrate to the northern and western parts of the country.
UPDATE: 8:30 AM CET
The Iranian Regime’s “Morality Police” Predicament
The Iranian regime, which wanted to give morale to its forces by relaunching the morality police, has tried to use this repressive patrol to impose the mandatory hijab through indirect repressive methods. On July 26th, the Mizan News Agency, affiliated with the judiciary, wrote, “Following the publication of images in cyberspace regarding the non-observance of the hijab by the employees of the Taqcheh company in the workplace, a court case was filed in this regard.” On the same day, the state-run news website Etemad Online wrote, “The public and revolutionary prosecutor of Damavand city announced the arrest of the manager and employee of a bank in Damavand for providing services to a woman not observing hijab rules.” The prosecutor added, “If the veiled person does not pay attention to the warning and insists on breaking the rule, it is necessary to immediately contact the State Security Force and inform the officers about the matter.”
Gooden Resolution Condemns Iran
U.S. Rep. Lance Gooden introduced a House resolution on Thursday condemning the government of Iran for alleged human rights abuses. The congressman’s rebuke covers Iran’s alleged 1988 massacre of political prisoners and recent violent uprisings in 2018, 2019, and 2022.
“This resolution affirms the commitment of Congress to support the Iranian people’s pursuit for a democratic, secular, and non-nuclear Iran,” Gooden (R-TX) said in a news release. Gooden pointed out that in 1988, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini initiated a campaign to eliminate perceived political adversaries of the regime.
People of Iran Mark Significant Religious Occasion by Commemorating Victims of Iran Protests
The people of Iran took the opportunity of one of the most significant religious occasions in Iran and the Middle East, to pay tribute to the victims of the 2022-2023 Iran protests. Friday, July 28, 2023, marked the day of martyrdom of the third Shiite Imam, Hussain (AS), the beloved grandson of the Prophet Mohammad. The incident is symbolic of sacrifice in the fight against oppression and injustice. On this day, Iranian people visited the tombs of the courageous young people who were slain during the protests last year. A group of musicians marched to the tomb of Ghazaleh Chalabi in Amol. They played a memorable tune in tribute to those who die in the fight for freedom. In Arak, people gathered at the tomb of Mehrshad Shahidi, the young baker who died during the protests last year in this city.
Coordination by Autocrats Must Be Countered by Coordination with Democratic Activists
Recently, five other former heads of state and I visited France to attend a conference at the headquarters of the National Council of Resistance of Iran. A month earlier, I joined more than 100 politicians and former high-ranking government officials from various countries in signing an open letter that expressed solidarity with Iran’s democratic Resistance movement and reiterated our endorsement of the 10-point plan for Iran’s future which has been presented by NCRI leader Maryam Rajavi. Our letter emphasized that in the wake of the latest popular uprising in the Islamic Republic, the time has come for the international community to hold Iranian officials for a long list of crimes including the murder of 750 protesters last year, and the systematic execution of roughly 30,000 political prisoners in the summer of 1988.
Tragic Loss of Lives in Sistan and Baluchestan: Five Fuel Porters and Three Girls Drown in Devastating Floods
Following heavy rainfall and flash floods in the southern regions of Sistan and Baluchestan, and the overflowing of seasonal rivers in the border area of Pirkour, there were tragic consequences. Five Baloch fuel porters lost their lives, and at least five others are still missing. Local residents discovered the bodies of the five deceased fuel porters.
Additionally, on July 24 and 25, two more Baloch fuel porters lost their lives in the Nohang River area after getting trapped in the floodwaters.
On July 27, three young girls aged 14, 12, and 16, who were originally from Sistan and Baluchestan, drowned in the floodwaters of the Sikhvaran River in the Siahoo region of Hormozgan province.
Narges Khorrami Fard
Narges Khorrami Fard, born on March 12, 1991, in Mashhad, was a dedicated lawyer known for her integrity and commitment to justice. She held license number 31997 and was a member of Tehran’s Lawyers’ Guild, although she primarily practiced in Mashhad. After the tragic and cold-blooded murder of Mahsa Amini, Narges became actively involved in protests, demonstrating her unwavering support for the cause. During the 2022-2023 Iran uprising, she fearlessly defended numerous young individuals who had been arrested or abducted, despite facing repeated threats and interrogations. Narges Khorrami Fard firmly believed in upholding her professional integrity and remained steadfast in her pursuit of justice.
Menendez, Rubio Introduce Resolution Honoring Victims of Terrorist Attacks Against Argentina’s Jewish Community
WASHINGTON – Today, in a posthumous tribute to the fallen victims and the wounded, and following the 29th anniversary of the terrorist attack against the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA), U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) introduced a bipartisan resolution to recommit efforts to uphold justice for the victims of these vicious attacks.
“As antisemitism is on the rise across the United States and around the world, it is vital that we stand unequivocally with Jewish communities and against words and acts of hate, wherever they occur,” said Chairman Menendez. “As I told leaders of Argentina’s Jewish community during my visit to the Argentine Israeli Mutual Association (AMIA) last October, we will never forget the 1994 bombing – the deadliest antisemitic attack outside Israel since the Holocaust – nor will we stay silent in the face of hate and violence directed towards the Jewish people.
Also, read Iran News in Brief – July 28, 2023