Abdolfattah Soltani, the human rights lawyer was released from prison today. He was incarcerated in the Summer of 2011.
Soltani is a member of the Human Rights Defenders organization. He was incarcerated on the charges of propaganda against the regime, forming the Human Rights Defenders organization, conspiracy and assembly against the regime, and earning illegitimate money. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison, banishment to Borazjan, and 20 years barred from practicing law. The sentence was reduced a year later to 13 years. He is now released on parole.
Center for Statistics: Price of food items increased by 56 percent in Spring
The most recent report published by Iran’s Center for Statistics shows a 56 percent inflation rate in the price of food items during the Spring. For non-consumable goods and services, the inflation rate was at 30 percent.
According to the report, in food items, the potato with almost 90 percent and eggs with -18 percent (due to subsidies) had the highest increase and decrease in prices.
The country’s inflation rate reached 37.6 in the Spring.
Facebook deletes 200 Iranian and Russian fake accounts
Facebook announced on Monday that it has deleted almost 200 fake accounts with ties to the government of Iran and Russia’s Internet Research Agency.
According to the reports, these accounts were mainly focused on the 2020 elections in the US, and the number of Iranian fake accounts and their activity were more than the Russians.
21 Iranian user accounts on Instagram and 135 fake accounts on Facebook were deleted.
According to Facebook, these accounts were mostly in sync with the propaganda of the Iranian state media.
Minister of Islamic Guidance: Average reading in Iran is 13 minutes
The minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance of the Islamic Republic of Iran warned about the drop in the average time of reading in the country. Salehi said on Monday: “Currently, the reading average in the country is almost 13 minutes, while the average use of the Internet is 169 minutes and watching TV is 72 minutes.”
The low number of public libraries, books, and cultural infrastructure have been mentioned as the reasons for this decrease.
International Chess Federation investigates Iranian players avoiding facing Israeli opponents
The International Chess Federation (Fide) told Iran International that it is reviewing the issue of Iranian players avoiding playing against Israeli opponents.
Fide told Iran International that the issue has been raised in the meeting of the federation’s executives and said the federation is obligated to punish such practices. The International Chess Federation also mentioned that in most cases Iranian chess players do not make these decisions by choice and said the punishments will be in a way that will not negatively impact the lives of chess players or put them in harm’s way in Iran.
In the youth world chess championship games in India, Mohammad Amin Tabatabaei refused to face an Israeli opponent. Before that, Arian Gholami also refused to play against an Israeli opponent and dropped out of the competition.
Bahareh Zare Bahari: Manila police is trying to deport me to Iran
Bahareh Zare Bahari, Miss Iran in China’s Miss Globe pageant says the Manila airport police is trying to deport her back to Iran.
Bahari participated as Miss Iran in the last year’s Miss Globe pageant in China, and in January 2019, she participated in the Miss Intercontinental pageant in the Philippines. She says the Iranian police and embassy have pressured the Philippines, where she studies medicine, to deport her back to Iran.
175 percent increase in price of land in Iran during the Spring
Iran’s Center for Statistics announced that during the Spring of 2019, the price of land has increased by 175 percent. According to the report, the cost of rent from the Spring of 2018 to 2019 has gone up by 35 percent. The price of residential apartments has increased by 110 percent.
UAE releases $700 million of Iran’s frozen funds
An Iranian MP announced that relations between the Islamic Republic and the United Arab Emirates are improving and the country has just released $700 million of Iran’s frozen funds.
Akbar Torki added: “UAE has distanced itself from Saudi Arabia and the United States and it is amending its relations with Iran.”
Last week, Rouhani’s chief of staff also announced that the relations between Iran and Emirates are “slowly changing” and Saudi Arabia has also slowly moved away from “hostile relations.”
After being shut down for a while, Iranian currency exchange businesses in Dubai have also reopened.
Sweden has arrested an Iranian suspected of espionage
Swedish newspapers reported that Swedish security police arrested a 46-year old Iranian man on the suspicion of espionage for Iranian Intelligence organizations seven months ago.
According to the report, this individual was arrested in connection to several assassination plots in Europe. The person’s name has not been revealed but according to the report he exited Iran almost 10 years ago and is a Swedish national. He was working as a journalist in Sweden.
In September of 2018, Denmark security police closed the connecting bridge between Denmark and Sweden. It was later announced that it was an operation to arrest suspects of an assassination plot of an Islamic Republic dissident.