Some Iranians Speak Out Against Hamas
December 31 -- An Iranian newspaper was closed by authorities after publishing a statement critical of the government's support for Hamas. The statement was made by a pro-reform student group to "Kargozaran," a paper affiliated with former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani [read more in Persian and in English]. During a discussion of the Gaza conflict, a Radio Farda listener in Tehran calls Hamas an obstacle to peace [listen in Persian]. Another listener from Southern Iran wonders why the government is sending support to the Palestinians when there are so many problems at home [listen in Persian].
More Harassment of Nobel Peace Laureate
December 29 -- Eight days after raiding the Center for Human Rights Defenders [more in English], Iranian security agents raided the private law office of the Center's Nobel prize-winning founder, Shirin Ebadi. Ebadi says five agents illegally confiscated her computers and all confidential documents relating to her clients [read more in English or listen in Persian].
Crackdown: Jailed Journalist on Hunger Strike, Jailed Activist in Critical Condition, Another Activist Arrested
December 29 -- Jailed Azeri journalist Shahnaz Gholami has been on a hunger strike for ten days to protest her prison conditions [read more in English or listen to an interview with her lawyer in Persian]. Meanwhile, Mohammad-Sedigh Kabudvand's wife says the imprisoned human rights activist has suffered as second heart attack in jail and has received no treatment [listen to an interview with her in Persian]. And prominent labor activist, Ebrahim Madadi, was arrested on December 20 despite concerns about his physical condition [read more in Persian].
Iran's China Model: Economic Growth Without Political Reform
Experts from Frankfurt, Tehran, and Boston discussed Iran's use of China as an economic role model on Radio Farda's weekly roundtable, "Viewpoints" [read more in Persian]. Meanwhile, one economist says Iran's inflation rate is likely to rise substantially in the near future [listen in Persian].