Iran asks KSA to rescind immunity over diplomat’s deadly crash

An Iranian lawmaker says the Islamic Republic is pursuing the case of the deadly car crash caused by a drunken Saudi Arabian diplomat in Tehran and has asked Riyadh to rescind the man’s diplomatic immunity.

MP Mehdi Davatgari, who is a member of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, said on Monday that the Iranian Judiciary initially wrote a letter about the case to the Iranian Foreign Ministry, which later posted another letter to the Saudi Arabian Foreign Ministry demanding that the diplomat’s immunity be rescinded.

Given the diplomatic immunity of the Saudi diplomat, of course the case is facing some difficulties, the Iranian legislator said, adding that there are two solutions to the problem: either the Iranian Judiciary takes up the case itself, or the Saudi Judiciary commits itself to the prosecution of the diplomat and the rescission of his diplomatic immunity.

Davatgari said Iran adheres to international conventions to which Saudi Arabia is also a member.

He went on to say that the Iranian Foreign Ministry and Majlis are trying to safeguard the rights of the children and relatives of the deceased Iranian citizen to receive legal damages.

On March 18, a drunken Saudi Embassy staffer killed an Iranian driver and injured a passerby in a car accident in a neighborhood of northeastern Tehran.

The Saudi staffer rammed his vehicle into the Iranian car before veering off the road. The Iranian driver was killed on the spot.

Four bottles of alcoholic beverages were found in the Saudi Embassy employee’s car. The police quickly arrived at the scene and started an investigation into the case.

On March 19, former Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said, “The Foreign Ministry immediately began pursuing the issue through judicial and diplomatic channels after being informed [of the accident] and has taken the necessary measures in this regard.”

M.D

Iran, Iraq sign new gas agreement

 TEHRAN, (ST) - The Iranian Ministry of Oil signed a new agreement for Iranian gas exports with the Iraqi Ministry of Energy in conjunction with the binary compatibility to lift the size of Iran's electricity exports to Iraq.

According to Mehr news agency reported recently that under the new contract between Iran and Iraq the Iranian Oil Ministry undertakes to export about 25 million cubic meters of gas per day from the South Pars field of acid gas west of the country to Iraq.

The Iranian Assistant President for International Affairs, Ali Saeedlou, pointed out  to the development and industrial contracts signed between Iran and Iraq, noting that Iran currently exports over 1300 MW of electricity per day to Iraq, where it is expected to add 150 megawatts a day to total Iranian exports of electrical power.

 “An economic strategy aimed, from behind the export of electricity to Iraq, to make it a transit point for the delivery of electricity to Syria and Lebanon in the near term, Mr. Saeedlou added.

Sh. Kh.

Opposition Figure: Crisis Settlement Impeded by Al-Khalifa's Grip on Power

A senior member of Bahrain's al-Wefaq National Islamic Society blasted the al-Khalifa regime for impeding a settlement of the crisis in tiny Gulf island by its grip on power.

"Manama's insistence on self-centeredness and grip on power delays settlement of the current crisis," Majid Milad told FNA in Manama on Tuesday.

He underlined the necessity for the al-Khalifa regime to respect freedom of expression and accept the opposition groups' criticism about the government's performance, and said, "The Bahraini regime doesn’t accept the freedom of expression unless it falls within the limits specified by the regime and to its own benefit."

Anti-government protesters have been holding peaceful demonstrations across Bahrain since mid-February 2011, calling for an end to the al-Khalifa dynasty.

Violence against the defenseless people escalated after a Saudi-led conglomerate of police, security and military forces from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states - Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar - were dispatched to the tiny Gulf kingdom on March 2011, to help Manama crack down on peaceful protestors.

So far, tens of protesters have been killed, hundreds have gone missing and thousands of others have been injured.

R.S

Iran Reiterates Call for Peaceful Settlement of Crisis in Syria, Urges National Dialogue

TEHRAN- (ST) -  Chief of the Foreign PolicyandNational Security Committee at theIranian Shura Council Alaeddin Boroujerdi has reiterated Iran's firm stance on the need to adopt a political solution to the crisis in Syria based on national dialogue among the Syrians.

In a statement on Tuesday,Boroujerdi, who ruled out military solution to the crisis, affirmed that "other countries also have to back dialogue between the Syrian government and the opposition instead of keeping interference in the Syrian affairs."

He warned against attempts by foreign parties like the United States and its allies in Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar to have political influence in the Syrian issue through holding different meetings for the "opposition" after their failure to achieve their schemes in Syria during the 28-month long crisis in the country.

On the situation in Egypt, Boroujerdi reiterated the need not to allow extremists to lead Egypt towards tragic events like those happening in Syria and Iraq. He expressed  Iran's hope that Egypt will surpass the ongoing crisis as soon as possible, and stressed his country's support for stability in this Arab country.   

"The United States and the Zionist entity are pleased to witness such a crisis in Egypt," Boroujerdi said, urging Egyptian parties to attain understanding, make the national interest as a top priority and be keen on preserving Egypt's national security.

Meanwhile, Iran's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Araqchi  affirmed Iran's call for political solution to the crisis in Syria based on national dialogue.

In a statement to the Iranian news agency, Araqchi  said: "Iran's stances have been evident since the beginning of the crisis as it is still calling for peaceful solution  and it believes that only dialogue and political settlement will serve the Syrian people's interests." 

On the French double standard policy and the French Foreign Ministry claims about Iran's interference in the Syrian issue, Araqchi stressed that Western countries' reactions after the election of President Hassan Rohani have been different, because these countries lack  right and objective analysis of the nature of Iran's stances on international causes , including the crisis in Syria.

H. Mustafa

     

Terrorist Blast Hits Bir Al-Abed Region in Beirut’s Southern Suburb

BEIRUT- A massive explosion hit Bir Al-Abed region in the Southern Suburb of Beirut on Tuesday, leaving 38 people slightly wounded and causing material damage at the place, according to al-Manar Website..

The criminal act was the result of a booby-trapped car parked in a parking lot in the crowded area, and it came only one day before the start of the Holy Month of Ramadan.

Black smoke billowed into the sky and firefighters rushed to the area to douse a fire that erupted after the blast. Security forces cordoned off the area for fearing another blast would go off at the place.

Al-Manar correspondent said that the bomb which exploded in Bir Al-Abed contained 35 kilograms of TNT.

"Bahman" Hospital Manager said that 38 injuries reached the hospital, 30 were cured and left it.

 

This terrorist act aims at weakening stability and security to this area and its people.

Lebanese President Michel Sleiman condemns the Dahiyeh blast, stressing that  security apparatus should intensify its investigations to uncover the perpetrators

Interior Minister Marwan Charbel said upon arriving at the explosion area, that this criminal act was aimed at dividing the country and causing sectarian strife, but it won't happen.

Lebanese Caretaker PM Najeeb Mikati affirmed that "the blast demonstrates that the criminals are bent on proceeding with their plan to cause unrest in Lebanon without distinguishing between one area and another."

Hezbollah MP Ali Ammar stressed to al-Manar that the Bir al-Abed blast was carried out by the supporters of the American-Israeli project.

H.M