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Heard In Iran: Ahmadinejad's Budget Illegal

American Journalist's Espionage Charges "Baseless"

April 13 -- In Tehran, Iranian-American journalist Roxana Saberi went on trial on espionage charges. Paris-based media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) has expressed concern over the charges brought against Saberi and is calling for her release. RFE/RL correspondent Golnaz Esfandiari asked RSF's Iran researcher, Reza Moini, about the case. [read in English or listen in Persian]

U.S. Outreach to Iran Puts Regime in Difficult Position

April 14 -- A U.S. State Department spokesman told Radio Farda that "the Obama Administration has said from the start that it wants to have direct discussions with Iran without preconditions" [listen to the interview]. Meanwhile, an Iranian political analyst says Obama's gestures of goodwill "put Iran in a difficult position." [read more in English]

Report: Ahmadinejad's Budget Illegal

April 13 -- An economist told Radio Farda that a new parliamentary report documents numerous violations in how Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's government spends money. He blamed the lack of civil society insitutions such as a free press for the lack of transparency in the budget. Another recent report revealed that more than $1 billion of oil revenue from 2006 is unaccounted for. [listen in Persian]

Iran Shrinking Government Subsidies

April 13 -- An economist told Radio that the Iranian government is reducing subsidies in order to compensate for the loss of revenue from plummeting oil prices. He said, "the government spends more on policing people than on their welfare." [read in Persian]

Students Protest Government with Sit-In and Hunger Strike

April 15 -- A student activist told Radio Farda that students of Babol Industrial University in northern Iran recently launched a sit-in and hunger strike to protest the government's continuing crackdown on students' rights. [read in Persian]