Chronology: Iran

The Middle East Journal, Spring 2010 | Go to article overview

Chronology: Iran


See also Arab-Israeli Conflict, Iraq, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen

Oct. 18: Forty-two people, including at least six Revolutionary Guard commanders, were killed in a bomb attack in southeastern Iran. Deputy Commander of the Guards' ground force General Noor 'Ali Shooshtari and the Guards' Chief Provincial Commander, Rajeb 'Ali Mohammadzadeh, were killed in the attack along with 15 Guard members and Sunni and Shi'a tribal leaders. Sunni militant group Jundullah claimed responsibility. [Reuters, 10/20]

Oct. 20: Iranian-American scholar Kian Tajbakhsh was sentenced to 12 years in an Iranian prison for his alleged role in the post-election unrest. Tajbakhsh was charged with espionage, among other things. An Iranian-Canadian journalist, Maziar Bahari, was freed on bail just three days prior, after being imprisoned for his alleged participation in opposition protests. [BBC, 10/20]

Oct. 24: Reformist newspaper Sarmayeh reported that 35 relatives of jailed reformists had been detained. Another reformist news source, Norooznews, claimed they had been taken during a prayer ceremony for their jailed relatives. [KT, 10/24]

Oct. 25: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors visited Iran's second uranium enrichment plant near Qom. This was the first inspection of the site since Iran disclosed its existence on September 21, 2009. [Al-Jazeera, 10/25]

Oct. 29: Swiss officials visited three American hikers being held in Tehran's Evin prison and reported them to be in good physical condition. The three were arrested on the Iran-Iraq border on July 31. [KT, 10/31]

Nov. 4: Opposition protestors renewed public challenges at a state-sponsored rally that celebrated the 30th anniversary of the takeover of the US Embassy in Iran. Approximately 109 people were arrested. Sixty-two were jailed while the rest were released. [RFE-RL, 11/7]

Nov. 5: In a report published by the IAEA, Director-General Muhammad El Baradei reported that "nothing serious" was found at the Qom nuclear plant in Iran. IAEA inspectors visited the site on October 25 after the site had been disclosed to the UN nuclear agency. [Reuters, 11/5]

Nov. 9: Iran accused the three American hikers detained on July 31 of espionage. While relatives and the US claimed that the three were simply innocent tourists, some analysts suggested that Iran was using the hikers as bargaining leverage in ongoing nuclear negotiations with the US and other world powers. [AP, 11/9]

Nov. 12: Hossein Hamedani replaced Abdullah Araghi as the commander of Tehran's Revolutionary Guards contingent. No reason was provided for the change. [RFE-RL, 11/12]

Nov. 15: Iranian police established a special unit aimed at monitoring illegal internet activity. Colonel Mehrdad Omidi, the head of the unit, said that its purpose was to combat "lies and political insults." Critics argued that the unit was set up to combat the ongoing opposition movement. [BBC, 11/15]

Dec. 7: Students Day, traditionally used by the government to stage anti-Western demonstrations, instead saw anti-government protestors gathering in cities across the country to show their support for Iran's opposition movement. The largest demonstration took place at Tehran University, where police shut down the campus in an effort to prevent a concurrent pro-government rally from being disrupted. Other smaller rallies were reported in Mashhad, Isfahan, Kerman, Shiraz, and Kermanshah. [RFE-RL, 12/7]

The newspaper Hayat-e No, which supported former presidential candidate Mir Hossein Moussavi, was shut down after a court ruled that it violated Iranian media laws. [RFE-RL, 12/8]

Dec. 8: Rioting broke out on the Tehran University campus when the Basij militia attacked students gathered to protest the disruption of their December 7 demonstration against the government. The December 7 demonstration resulted in the arrests of 204 protesters - 165 men and 39 women. …

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