4 Jan 2017 – A Kurdish engineer, arrested by the Iranian intelligence, has also gone missing for one month now – A Kurdish prisoner, convicted of homicide, was hanged on Tuesday in Iran, marking the first execution of Kurdish inmates in the country in 2017.
2 Jan 2017 – A veteran general in the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) militia was killed during clashes with opposition fighters in Syria, according to Iranian media sources close to the IRGC.
The Iranian Fars news agency said General Gholam Ali Gholizadeh, a veteran of the Iraq-Iran war in the 1980s, was killed during battles with opposition fighters in Syria, without providing further details.
January 01 2017 – By Scott Lucas – eaworldview – UPDATE 1315 GMT: The Iranian regime has continued its reception of the Syrian Foreign Minister with the declaration that Tehran will maintain “strategic ties” with the Assad regime.
Ali Akbar Velayati, the Supreme Leader’s top advisor, offered the remarks in his meeting with Walid al-Moallem, celebrating the reoccupation of all of Aleppo city by pro-Assad forces: “Aleppo’s liberation is a major victory, and Syria’s friends and enemies acknowledge it.”
Velayati tried to define next month’s proposed talks in Kazakhstan between the Assad regime and the Syrian opposition, saying that only rebels who “are willing to lay down their weapons and stop terrorist acts and accept to be a part of the great Syrian nation” can attend.He said those rebels must “respect Syria’s territorial integrity and legitimate sovereignty”.
Iran: Aleppo ist eine Front der Islamischen Revolution
26 Dec 2016 – „Commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari, has hailed the ‚victory‘ in Syria’s Aleppo claiming that the city represents a frontline for ‚Islamic revolution‘ in his country. According to him, Iranian authorities view the evacuation of citizens from Aleppo and the destruction of the city as ‚victory‘. Jafari also said that Tehran now views its security outside its borders. ‚Our security has surpassed our geographic borders,‘ he said, adding that ‚exporting Islamic revolution‘ is one of the achievements of his country led by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.“ (Ramdan al-Saadi: „Iranian commander: Aleppo is the ‚frontline of Islamic revolution‘“)
What are the Popular Mobilization Forces (IRAQ) ? – Jack Watling writes for The Atlantic:
25 Dec 2016 – Along the road joining the cities of Najaf and Karbala in southern Iraq is a line of placards, attached at 50-meter intervals to every lamppost. Each one shows the face of a volunteer killed in the fight against the Islamic State. But these are not the faces of Iraqi army soldiers. They are the faces of fighters from the Hash’d al Shaabi, the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) created via fatwa by the senior-most cleric in Shia Islam, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, in response to the fall of Mosul in 2014. Sistani declared the fight against the Islamic State “a sacred defense,” and promised that “whoever of you sacrifices himself to defend his country and his family and their honor will be a martyr.”
!KNOW BETTER WITH MESOP NEWS ! – U.N. Agency Publishes Secret Iran Deal Docs On Exemptions Obama Admin Dismissed / Top Nuclear Ex-pert: “You just have to ask the question of, what else is being hidden?”
9:00 AM, Dec 25, 2016 | By Jenna Lifhits – WEEKLY STANDARD – Iran was given secret exemptions allowing the country to exceed restrictions set out by the landmark nuclear deal inked last year, some of which were made public this week by the United Nations nuclear watchdog and others that are likely still being withheld, according to diplomatic sources and a top nuclear expert who spoke to THE WEEKLY STANDARD. – The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Friday posted documents revealing that Iran had been given exemptions in January that permit the country to stockpile uranium in excess of the 300 kilogram limit set by the nuclear deal, experts said. The agreements had been kept secret for almost a year, but recent reports indicated that the Trump administration intended to make them public.
Iranian Kurdish groups warn of further attacks against them in Kurdistan Region
By Rudaw 26 Dec 2016 – ERBIL, Kurdistan Region– Representatives from thirty Kurdish political factions on Sunday condemned last week’s deadly bombing in Koya which targeted the offices of Iran’s Kurdistan Democratic Party (PDK, HDK). The factions also expressed concern for what they described as possible escalation of attacks on Iran’s Kurdish opposition in the Kurdistan Region.
MESOP NEWS BACKGROUNDER : LEBANON & SYRIA MORE & MORE IN TEHRANS HANDS – “US Plot v. Syria Was 1st Step Towards Regime Change in Tehran”
December 26 – by Scott Lucas – eaworldview – The deputy head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards has declared the US “interfered” in Syria as its first step towards overthrow of the Iranian regime.Brigadier General Hossein Salami said in a televised interview that Washington wanted to curb Iran’s regional influence by gradually approaching its borders and entangling the Islamic Republic in a crisis at home. He explained wanted to “undercut the Resistance drive, depose the Syrian administration, and partition the Arab country before heading to Lebanon and Iraq and eventually reaching Iran”.
EAST KURDISTAN (IRAN) – December 25 – 2016 – Iran’s President Rouhani has conferred with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin by phone, their third discussion about the Syrian crisis within a month.
MESOP BACKGOUNDER : December 23 – Iran’s regime continues to hail “victory” in Syria’s largest city Aleppo, but trouble may loom with Russia, the other major supporter of the Assad regime.
The Supreme Leader’s top aide, Ali Akbar Velayati, praised Tuesday’s meeting of Russia, Iran, and Turkey as a “major development”, since Ankara has up to now backed the Syrian opposition and rebels:In the past, Iran and Russia have been on one side, and Turkey on the other. Today, however, these three countries have formed the premise for achieving… the liberation of the Syrian government and people from the hands of foreigners.Velayati said he hoped that “through this meeting, the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the legitimate government of Syria will be stabilized, the people will escape this ruinous war, the terrorists will be driven out of Syria, and Syria will be out of the hands of foreigners.”