Tuesday, May 29, 2007


Today, the Spokesman of the Iranian Judiciary announced that Kian Tajbakhsh (along with Haleh Esfandiary) is accused of spying and acting against Iran's national security.

Mr. Tajbakhsh was collaborating with the Open Society Institute. But if having contacts with OSI is tantamount to spying, then perhaps someone else will also be in trouble when he returns to Iran...

Sunday, May 27, 2007

To all the Iranians

Marjane Satrapi has won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival for Persepolis. Clearly, I have not seen the film but being a fan and having read the books I can imagine that it is a very well deserved prize.

Most likely, the IRI will not think so.

And yet, when asked to comment about the controversy in a press conference, she tried not to fuel the fire by saying that the film is humanist and could have been set anywhere in the world.

Other Iranians in Cannes have made veiled comments, which were subsequently unveiled...

Tonight, Ms. Satrapi herself added to her first comment by saying: Although, as I said, this film shows events that could happen to anyone in the world -- that one's life be affected by a revolution, a war... this particular story happened in Iran and I dedicate this award to all the Iranians.

Thanks Marjane!

PS: Kiarostami's contribution to the film in honour of the 60th Anniversary of the Festival was about women. Every single one of them would have been stopped in the street for bad hijab...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

The Great Pretender

I am sorry...

This was the first comment that was left on this photographer's blog, responding to the question posed on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the 2nd of Khordad, what was your image of the next ten years at the time you were voting for Khatami?

The next comment is "Oh my! these people have no memory..."

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Well, yes... but no, really...

It seems that our dear Minister of Foreign Affairs doesn't quite seem to be able to make up his mind, one days he says a thing and the next he really meant something else.

Of course, he was under pressure, having to match the statement Mr. Larijani had made the day before.

But we have to raise our hat to the man who prompted all this by saying: "Talk about adding Palestine to the map and not cancelling Israel."

PS: You will note, however, that at the end of the day, both Mottaki and Larijani agree that is it either the "claim" or the "bi-product" of Western media

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Stormy weather

A few days ago, first hail

and then rain

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

The hard way

Thanks to this blogger, I found out about the site in support of Ms. Haleh Esfandiary's release. Very quickly set up and quite sophisticated. I don't think I have seen such a high quality site put together for any Iranian prisoner of conscience before, not even for Mr. Ganji.

I once heard Ms. Esfandiary speak at Asia Society in New York, on women's rights. That evening she said that Iranian women are protected by the Constitution...

We all hope that Ms. Esfandiary will be released very soon, Evin is no place to linger in, and I hope that when she returns to the US safe and sound she will take on the defence of those who will (unfortunately) still be suffering from human rights violations in Iran and who will not have the benefit of such public attention.

Thursday, May 03, 2007


So, the cat is finally out of the bag: Switzerland was working on a proposal to settle the nuclear issue. This explains why it has been turning a blind eye on Iran's human rights. Unlike all other Western countries, it recently abstained on the vote at the Human Rights Council and it did not co-sponsor the resolution at the UN General Assembly.

Trying to be a broker is not a bad thing per se, but not at the cost of human rights, particularly when we know what generally happens to Swiss proposals regarding Iran.