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Saudi regime forces shoot dead a protester in Qatif

At least one protester has been shot dead by the Al Saud regime forces during a demonstration to demand the release of political prisoners in the country’s oil-rich Eastern Province.

Local activists said on Friday that the Saudi regime forces opened fire on demonstrators in the Qatif district, east of the capital, Riyadh, killing 18-year-old Ali al-Marar.

According to local reports, several others were also injured and arrested during the demonstration that, once again, called on the regime to stop cracking down on protesters.

Activists further said that security forces in two vehicles had shot "indiscriminately" at the demonstrators in the central part of Qatif. The forces had also reportedly opened fire at the people on rooftops.

Saudi Arabia’s oil-rich Eastern Province has been rocked by anti-regime protests since February 2011.

Saudi protesters have held demonstrations on an almost regular basis mainly in the Qatif region and the town of Awamiyah in Eastern Province. Their primary demands are the release of all political prisoners, social justice and an end to systematic discrimination.

However, the demonstrations have turned into protests against the repressive Al Saud regime, especially since November 2011, when Saudi security forces killed five protesters and injured many others in the province.

According to Human Rights Watch, the Saudi regime “routinely represses expression critical of the government."


Iranian gas platforms exceed Qatar's




CEO of Iran Oil and Gas Company has provided comments on the latest developments of 5 global megaprojects in Asaluyeh, announced the gas injection and operation of phases 15 and 16 of the South Pars. “Despite sanctions, Iran’s platforms in South Pars have exceeded Qatar for the first time.

  On the expansion of the Iranian drilling platform fleet in the shared oil and gas fields of South Pars, Mousavi Souri said “Currently 15 platforms and jack-up rigs are operational at different phases of the gas, and the oil layer of the South Pars.

 “Accordingly, in the expansion process, 12 platforms operate at phase 12 of South Pars, and one at phases 4, 10, 13, 14, 19, and 22-25 each.” He added.

Member of Pars Special Economic Energy Zone Directing Board referred to the operation of 2 drilling platforms at each of the phases 15, 16, 17, 18, and said that it is expected that the number of Iranian jack-up rigs and drilling platforms on the field will grow until the end of this year

According to the timetable, it is expected that by the end of March, the number of platforms at South Pars will reach 20, making it to 28 by the next Iranian year.

According to the Oil Ministry’s agreement, South Park contractors will be provided with $40 million for prepayment or rent for drilling platforms.

It is expected that with the advance payment, drilling platform trade-in to South Pars phases will be facilitated. The project initiative was made operational toward the end of last Iranian year (late March), which resulted in the increase in the number of drilling platforms at the shared fields of South Pars.





Iran, Armenia Stress Peaceful Settlement of Crisis in Syria

Iran and Armenia called for peaceful settlement of the ongoing crisis in Syria, according to IRNA. 

 In a meeting between the Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia-Pacific Affairs Abbas Araqchi and the Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian, the two officials expressed concern over the present situation in Syria and underlined the need for working out peaceful solutions to problems in Syria and the start of national dialogue in the country.

They also dismissed intervention of foreign forces in Syria and called for adoption of any policy to avoid worsening situation in the region.

The Iranian and Armenian officials further stressed the peaceful settlement of Karabakh dispute according to international laws.

They also discussed bilateral relations as well as the latest regional and international developments.


Iraqi Parliamentarians: Erdogan Iraq's Enemy

BAGHDAD, (ST)- Several Iraqi parliamentarians  have called for the expulsion of the Turkish Ambassador from Baghdad and considered the Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan  as Iraq 's enemy because of his continuous intervention in the internal affairs of Iraq and his  threats to the Iraqis by dragging terrorism, that the Syrian people suffer from, to Iraq.

"  Erdogan who invested  himself as a  sectarian policeman in the region in a manner reminds of the  Shah of Iran, who was a policeman of the  Gulf on behalf of the USA  and in coordination with Israel." Said  Iraqi parliamentarian, Yassin Majeed.

Majeed demanded the Iraqi political forces to condemn Erdogan's statement and work on the expulsion of its ambassador from Baghdad after he had exceeded all .
For his part, MP Adnan al Shahmani  said that the Turkish interference in the affairs of Iraq and the region is not new and is caused by the complicity of some at home who betray Iraq on the basis of narrow personal ambitions.

While MP Mohammad al-Hindawi, a member of the National Alliance said Erdogan's remarks are a blatant interference in its internal affairs which is prohibited by international laws work as well as diplomatic relations between the two countries, which provides for the mutual respect for the sovereignty of each country and non-interference in its internal affairs.

Erdogan is well- known his abhorrent sectarianism and expansionist ambitions beyond all international  laws and conventions and seeks through his statements to create a crisis in a safe, stable and democratic country, Hindawi said.

Hindawi stressed that the Erdogan's plan, his Qatari and Saudi partners to ignite an internal war in Iraq as they did in Syria and called on Iraqis to  be united and  to boost patriotism among all components of the people.

MP Alia Nassif called on presenting a complaint to the United Nations against the Turkish practices aimed at inciting sectarian strife in Iraq.

"Erdogan is adopting a sectarian discourse toward Iraqis without showing any respect to the components of the Iraqi people and Turkey seeks behind the scenes to inciting sectarian strife in Iraq to achieve their own agendas, Nassif said

While MP, Kamal Saadi, that history will see the collapse of Erdogan as he put his hands in the swamp of sectarian pointing out that vanity and Ottoman trend mixed with sectarianism dressed Erdogan.

Al Sa'idi confirmed that attempts to re-produce Ottoman occupation of the past and become and  the Iraqis will never accept this and if Erdogan wants to drag the region into a sectarian war, this war will burn him.



FM: Iran Standing Firm against Imposition of Foreign Solutions for Crisis




TEHRAN, (ST)_ ''As we have announced, this crisis should be resolved through a Syrian-Syrian solution and the Islamic Republic of Iran will not allow a foreign solution to be imposed to end the Syrian crisis," Salehi told reporters at the end of a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday.

  He said that Iran is pursuing its 6-point plant to settle the crisis in Syria, adding that he will have a meeting with foreign ambassadors to Tehran to discuss the issue.

Iranian officials have recently called on political leaders and religious figures in the region to support Tehran's 6-point plan to settle the crisis in Syria.

Iran's proposed plan calls for an immediate end to violence and a start of the national dialogue. The third step is to create a reconciliation government and provide humanitarian aid to the people of Syria. The next step is the release of prisoners, who have not committed a crime against Syrians. And the final point is to allow media's full access to Syria.

Tehran has recently doubled its efforts to settle the problems in Syria which has been experiencing unrests since March 2011 with organized attacks by well-armed gangs against Syrian security forces and border guards.

On November 18, Iran hosted the Syrian National Dialogue Conference, with the motto "No to Violence, Yes to Democracy."

Over 200 Syrian religious and political figures, leaders of tribes and parties as well as representatives and leaders of the opposition groups took part in the two-day meeting in Tehran.

A number of Syrian parliament members as well as senior political figures from Sudan, Algeria, Turkey, Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq, Brazil and Zimbabwe also took part in the meeting.