Tahereh Hadian-Jazy

  • Iranian Society Shaken by Former Mayor’s Murder of His Wife

    In Iran, as in other societies, citizens wish to see those in high political office as exemplars of positive values and ideals such as virtue, decency and morality. 

    If an official of the Islamic Republic is caught in a scandal, he or she is likely to be removed or forced to resign. Still, Iranians have become used to financial corruption. But the case of former Tehran mayor and education minister Mohammad Ali Najafi—who has confessed to shooting to death his second wife—has profoundly shocked the nation, touched off a debate about polygamy and domestic violence and become enmeshed in Iran’s bitter factional politics.

    Read More
  • US Sanctions Are Causing Medicine Shortages, According to Iranians

    The re-imposition of US sanctions since President Donald Trump abandoned the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in May 2018 has had a devastating effect on the Iranian economy and has especially impacted the lives of those who struggle to provide medicine for themselves and their families. 

    Medicine is supposed to be exempt from the sanctions. Yet Europeans companies and banks have refused to participate in financial transactions involving pharmaceuticals out of fear of US secondary sanctions.

    Read More
  • Mixed Reactions in Iran to Trump’s Maximum Pressure Policy

    Harsh measures by the Trump administration against Iran have largely united Iranian political factions against the United States but have triggered a variety of reactions from ordinary Iranians.

    Some have expressed hope for a more open environment as the government seeks to shore up popularity despite rising prices and diminished economic opportunity. Others believe Iran should stand up to US “bullying” despite the costs.

    Read More
  • A Right-Wing Loyalist, Sadeq Larijani, Gains More Power in Iran

    Following the death of Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi after a long illness, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has chosen the current head of the judiciary, Ayatollah Sadeq Larijani, to another powerful post: chairman of a council tasked with resolving disputes among government branches and potentially playing a role in selecting Khamenei’s successor.

    Shahroudi, who replaced the late President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani as head of the Expediency Council in August 2017 after Rafsanjani’s death, was considered a relative moderate within Iran’s political spectrum despite a decade heading the judiciary from 1999 to 2009 and a record of repressing dissidents.

    Read More
  • New Tehran Mayor Takes Office After Controversy

    Pirouz Hanachi was narrowly elected mayor of Tehran last month by the capital’s city council, besting former roads and urban development minister Amir-Abbas Akhoundi by one vote—eleven to ten.

    Hanachi replaces Mohammad Ali Afshani as the third mayor of the capital in the council’s current term. However, the Interior Ministry delayed accepting his election and officially ratifying it. This was due to the fact that the Intelligence Ministry did not swiftly approve Hanachi’s clearance for reasons that have not been disclosed. 

    Read More
  • Jamal Khashoggi Murder Bolsters Iran’s Strategic Position

    With international attention glued to the gruesome murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi for the past few weeks, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the United States have struggled to gain the upper hand over the narrative while Iran has largely been a contented bystander.

    The crime has weakened the position of Iran’s arch rival at least temporarily and severely undermined, if not, destroyed the “reformist image” of powerful Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Subsequent denials and clumsy cover-ups have further damaged Saudi Arabia’s reputation and could indeed upset the power balance in the Middle East.

    Read More
  • ICJ Decision a Victory for Iranian Public Diplomacy

    A recent decision by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) regarding US sanctions against Iran is an important success story for the Islamic Republic.

    The ICJ decreed on October 3 that Washington must insure that its sanctions don’t adversely impact humanitarian goods or civil aviation safety in Iran. Even though the Trump administration rejected the rulingand the ICJ lacks the means to enforce its decisionit still carries a great deal of soft power in the court of international public opinion.

    Facing a US administration that rejects international agreements and attempts to get its way through unilateral pressure, Iran has increasingly been turning to international fora and to public diplomacy. Victories in this arena come at a time when public awareness is at its...

    Read More
  • FATF Legislation Reflects Continuing Political Divide in Iran

    Enacting legislation against money laundering and terrorism financing has been a long struggle between the Iranian parliament, which is dominated by moderate conservatives and reformists, and the Guardian Council, whose members are largely appointed by Iran’s Supreme Leader.

    Parliament passed several laws in time for a meeting that began October 14 of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global body that monitors financial transparency and counter-terrorism financing. Over 800 officials representing 204 institutions, including the International Monetary Fund, United Nations and World Bank, attended the meeting. Fulfilling the obligations set by FATF is crucial for Iran to avoid a FATF blacklist, continue to connect with the international banking system and benefit from trade relations with European countries and China at a time when Iran’s economy is facing resumed US sanctions.

    Read More
  • Travel Ban Punishes Iranian Scholars and Undermines US Economy

    The Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision to uphold the third iteration of President Donald Trump’s travel ban falls hardest on Iranians – both those seeking to travel to the US and those in the US who cannot go home without jeopardizing their ability to return.

    The situation is particularly dire for Iranians studying for graduate degrees, doing research and teaching at US universities. They can no longer leave for any destination because of fear that they will not be able to complete their studies or resume their research-affiliated positions. 

    Read More
  • Filmmakers Explore Changing Mores of Iranian Women

    Films are a window through which one can glimpse cultural, social and political dynamics in societies and gain a better understanding of underlying cultural traits, traditions, beliefs and aspirations. Several recent films provide such insights about the changing mores of women in Iran.

    Tahmineh Milani, a feminist Iranian filmmaker, has been addressing women’s issues rooted in religious, traditional and cultural practices for the past two decades. She has challenged patriarchal traditions in films such as “Two Women,” “Hidden Half” and “Fifth Reaction.”

    Read More