Sunday, 25 November 2012

The Latest from Iran (25 November): Larijani's Diplomatic Push

0700 GMT: News inside Iran is dominated by the observance of the religious holiday of Ashura, with thousands gathering to remember the killing of Imam Hussein and ceremonies including the Supreme Leader.

Outside Iran, the headline is of Tehran's continued attempt to turn the Gaza War to its advantage. Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani has led the effort with his tour of Syria, Lebanon, and Turkey. On Saturday, he met Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

There are no visible outcomes from the missions yet, despite Larijani's claim "that Tehran, Damascus, Beirut and Ankara came closer to a common stance on leading regional issues". Instead, on his return to Tehran, Larijani appeared to pick a fight with Ankara by challenging its request for the placement of NATO Patriot anti-missile systems on the Syria border: "In meetings with Turkey’s top officials, we warned that the deployment of such systems will have adverse consequences and will exacerbate problems in the region."

President Ahmadinejad also tried to get into the diplomatic act from Tehran. Pro-Ahmadinejad State news agency IRNA highlights the President's phone calls with Gazan Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and with the Director-General of Islamic Jihad, Ramadan Abdullah.

from EA WorldView: EA Iran

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