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WORLD
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.
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WORLD
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.
WORLD
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.
WORLD
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.
WORLD
January 20, 2013 | By Ramin Mostaghim, Los Angeles Times
TEHRAN - A pair of thieves caught in the act on a video posted to YouTube were executed at dawn on a residential street Sunday by a method dating back beyond medieval times: hanging. The handcuffed men, convicted of the crime of moharebeh (waging war against God), were strung from twin cranes placed side by side in the upscale district. They were then hoisted aloft in front of a crowd of nearly 100 onlookers, with the crane operators, in effect, serving as executioners. Their sentence was widely viewed as a get-tough message from Iranian authorities alarmed about reports of escalating street thuggery amid an economic downturn driven by escalating international sanctions.
WORLD
November 3, 2012 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Alexandra Sandels, Los Angeles Times
TEHRAN - There's little reaction in Iran so far to "Argo," the box-office hit about the elaborate and risky rescue of six U.S. diplomats who avoided becoming hostages when militants stormed the U.S. Embassy here on Nov. 4, 1979 - 33 years ago Sunday. Of course, 52 other U.S. citizens were held hostage for 444 days in one of the more ignominious episodes in U.S. diplomatic history. Although "Argo" has not appeared in Iran even in a pirated version, as many movies from the West are first viewed here, curious cinema enthusiasts have viewed excerpts on the Internet, via proxy servers to circumvent government censors.
WORLD
October 6, 2007 | Ramin Mostaghim and Borzou Daragahi, Special to The Times
tehran -- Iran's president delivered fiery remarks Friday about Israel and his country's nuclear program on Quds Day, the annual event marking Muslim opposition to the Jewish state's control of Jerusalem. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad used the occasion to criticize Israel's policies and Western laws that bar questioning the Holocaust. He repeated his suggestion that the West relocate Israel's Jewish population to "somewhere in Canada or Alaska."
WORLD
December 14, 2009 | By Ramin Mostaghim
Three Americans arrested while hiking along the Iran-Iraq border last summer will soon be put on trial, Iranian Foreign Minister Manoucher Mottaki said, accusing them of "dubious intent." U.S. citizens Shane Bauer, Joshua Fattal and Sarah Shourd, all living in or visiting the Middle East, were arrested July 31 during what friends and family describe as a travel adventure in the picturesque mountains of Iraqi Kurdistan, which abuts Iran. A friend who was with them said they may have accidentally strayed across the Iranian border.
WORLD
October 15, 2007 | Borzou Daragahi and Ramin Mostaghim, Special to The Times
Iranian authorities imprisoned one of their nation's most prominent human rights activists Sunday after he appeared at a court appointment, said his lawyer. Emadeddin Baghi, a writer who has campaigned vigorously against the death penalty in Iran, was taken during a hearing in Tehran's Revolutionary Court, which tries those charged with political crimes. Baghi's relatives said the court imposed a previously suspended one-year sentence on state security charges and denied bail.
WORLD
October 20, 2007 | Ramin Mostaghim and Borzou Daragahi, Special to The Times
The head of Iran's law enforcement agency warned Friday of a renewed crackdown on Iranians who adhere to Western cultural ways. Esmail Ahmadi-Moghadam, chief of Iran's security forces, said pressure on "thugs and gangs" over the last six months had proved successful, and told Iranians to expect tougher enforcement of the Islamic Republic's moral codes.
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