Basijis reportedly gathered in front of the Oil Ministry in Tehran to “protest the terms of a proposed contract that would permit foreign oil companies to help revitalize outdated wells and infrastructure. The proposal amounted to ‘the plundering of national wealth,’" protesters shouted. At least 20 protesters were arrested by riot police, while others were beaten.
Khomeini returns, but not quite
Monday marked the 37th anniversary of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s return to Iran after years in exile. His grandson Hassan Khomeini was surprisingly absent from the pageantry at his shrine. Last week, the younger Khomeini was disqualified from running in the upcoming elections for the Assembly of Experts. Journalist Scott Peterson explores the fierce rift that affects Khomeini’s grandson. (By the way that's his photo below)
Zarif called on the U.S. to ease the concerns of European banks looking to trade with Iran during an event at Chatham House. He said, “Rebuilding the confidence of the banks that the United States will not re-intervene in their relations with Iran may require some further assurance from the United States. We don't need any more legalese--we need clear precise assurances that banks can do business with Iran.” The foreign minister added, "I hope that is fast coming because if not it would be a problem of implementation."
On the eve of Zarif’s visit, ex-BBC Persian journalist Bahman Daroshafaei was jailed. Daroshafaei had been living in Iran for two years and was working on children’s literature while maintaining an active presence on social media where he often Tweeted about human rights issues. According to The Guardian, “The awkward timing of the arrest suggests that hardliners, who dominate the judiciary and the intelligence apparatus, may be seeking to undermine Zarif and the moderate faction in control of the government as the Iranian foreign minister visits the UK.”