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January 22, 2011 | By Ramin Mostaghim, Los Angeles Times
Iran's Foreign Ministry has barred the mayor of Tehran, a rival of conservative President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, from traveling to the United States to be honored for improving the capital's public transportation system, a local newspaper reported Saturday. Mohammed Baqer Qalibaf has been denied permission to attend a conference Monday of the Institute for Transport and Development Policy, reported the newspaper Tehran Emrouz, which is close to the mayor. Tehran, along with the Chinese city of Guangzhou, the Spanish city of Leon, the Peruvian capital of Lima, and the French city of Nantes, are finalists for the 2011 Sustainable Transport Award bestowed by the international transport institute.
April 4, 2014 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Patrick J. McDonnell
TEHRAN -- Four Iranian border guards kidnapped two months ago by Sunni Muslim militants along the nation's southeastern frontier with Pakistan have been released in Pakistan, Iranian news agencies reported Friday. A fifth kidnapped border guard was reported executed last month by his captors. His body has been handed over to Iranian authorities, according to media accounts. The case sparked outrage in Iran and inflamed tension between Iran and Pakistan, where the abducted guards were apparently held.
August 20, 2011 | By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times
Iranian authorities sentenced two Americans arrested and detained along the Iran-Iraq border to eight years in prison, state television cited an unnamed judicial source as saying on Saturday. The men, who have already been held in prison for more than two years in Iran, have 20 days to appeal their convictions on charges of illegal entry onto Iranian territory and espionage. Shane Bauer and Joshua Fattal, both 28 years old, were arrested along the Iran-Iraq border during what they insist was an ill-fated hiking trip in the scenic mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan.
August 3, 2013 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Patrick J. McDonnell
TEHRAN -- Hassan Rouhani became the seventh president of the Islamic Republic of Iran on Saturday, officially receiving the endorsement of the nation's supreme leader at a formal ceremony here in the capital. Rouhani, 64, a cleric considered a moderate pragmatist, replaced outgoing two-term President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was barred from seeking a third term by law. Rouhani was elected in June in a surprise landslide victory. Rouhani's formal inauguration and swearing-in are scheduled for Sunday, but Saturday marked the new president's ascension to office.
November 28, 2013 | By Ramin Mostaghim
TEHRAN -- The Iranian capital has long been known for its smog, but pollution in recent days has taken an eye-watering turn for the worse, hampering visibility and causing authorities to shutter schools and curtail the number of cars allowed in the city center. Children and the elderly have been told to stay indoors if possible, and the smog has forced even healthy residents to cut back on strolls and jogs. On Wednesday, only cars with license plates ending in even numbers were permitted on downtown streets.
April 23, 2014 | By Ramin Mostaghim
TEHRAN - Iran replaced its top prison administrator Wednesday after public protests alleging excessive violence against inmates at a prison that holds inmates detained for political crimes. The semiofficial Fars News Agency reported that Gholam Hosein Esmaeli was removed from his position as director of the nation's penal system and appointed as head of an appeals court  branch in Tehran. Esmaeli told local media that the change was a promotion and was in no way related to last week's disturbances at the capital's Evin Prison.
February 6, 2014 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Alexandra Sandels
TEHRAN -- Did a presidential appearance on Iran's state broadcaster become the latest battlefield in the struggle for influence between the nation's hard-liners and reformists? When Iranians tuned in to state television's Channel One on Wednesday evening for a live interview with President Hassan Rouhani, they found an Islamic soap opera on their screens instead. The interview finally went ahead more than 90 minutes after the scheduled time. It ended close to midnight. The reason behind the delay?
May 29, 2013 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Alexandra Sandels
TEHRAN -- Iran hosted a peace conference on Syria on Wednesday titled "Political Solution, Regional Stability. " The Iranian news media dubbed the gathering in Tehran the "Friends of Syria Conference," a term used by a coalition of Western and Arab states that support the Syrian opposition forces fighting against forces loyal to President Bashar Assad. It came as Russian and U.S. officials are trying to organize a peace conference on Syria in Geneva next month. Iran, Assad's key regional ally, has yet to be invited to the Geneva conference, spurring some observers to believe Wednesday's conference was a move by Tehran to portray itself as an important player.  Iranian media reported that officials from 40 countries and representatives from regional and international organizations were to take part in the conference.
April 22, 2014 | By Ramin Mostaghim
TEHRAN - Relatives of Iranians jailed on various security charges held a protest Tuesday outside the offices of President Hassan Rouhani , alleging that the prisoners are being detained unfairly. The demonstration came as Iranian officials denied reports of violent clashes last week in the capital's Evin Prison, where dissidents say many political prisoners are held. Opposition websites and relatives of prisoners reported that authorities stormed a cellblock at  Evin and that many inmates were injured.
May 17, 2013 | By David Wharton
On the eve of an international wrestling meet at the Sports Arena, American officials remain at a loss to explain why the Iranian team - making its first visit to the U.S. since 2003 - has unexpectedly withdrawn and flown home. Los Angeles was supposed to be the second stop in a two-city tour. The Iranians competed in New York earlier this week. Iranian media reported Friday that team officials had security concerns and that U.S. officials refused to guarantee their safety on the West Coast.
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