News Briefs

August 27, 2011
Iran inaugurated a plant for producing carbon fiber, a material that Iran is banned from importing because of international sanctions. Design and manufacturing for the plant's machinery was carried out by the Ministry of Defense. Carbon fiber is a dual-use material that has missile and nuclear applications.
-- Agence France-Presse
August 25, 2011
JPMorgan Chase agreed to pay $88.3 million as part of a settlement with the Treasury Department over a series of transactions involving Cuba, Iran and Sudan. JPMorgan violated U.S. embargo laws by processing wire transfers totaling around $178.5 million for Cuban nationals in late 2005 and early 2006. JPMorgan violated U.S. sanctions against Iran and made a $2.9 million loan to a bank that had ties to Iran’s government-owned shipping line in 2009. JPMorgan also failed to give up documents about a wire transfer that referred to Khartoum, Sudan in 2010 and 2011.
-- New York Times
August 22, 2011
Iran has moved centrifuges from its main uranium enrichment facility in Natanz to an underground uranium enrichment site in Fordo, which offers better protection from possible airstrikes. Iran did not say how many centrifuges had been moved, or specify the type of centrifuge. The bunker facility is to house approximately 3,000 centrifuges.
-- Associated Press
August 5, 2011
Turkey seized an Iranian shipment of arms destined for Syria. The shipment, marked "spare parts for guns," was seized by Turkish officials who suspected it violated U.N. sanctions on Iranian arms exports.
-- Today's Zaman
August 3, 2011
Iran's parliament approved Rostam Qasemi as the the country's oil minister. Qasemi is a Revolutionary Guards commander who formerly headed Khatam al-Anbia, a Guards' construction and engineering company. Qasemi has been under U.S. and EU sanctions since 2010.
-- Reuters
July 28, 2011
The man assassinated in Tehran recently was a physicist involved in Iran's nuclear weapon program named Rezaeinejad, according to a foreign government official. Rezaeinejad allegedly worked on high voltage switches that could be used to detonate a nuclear warhead. Iranian state media has claimed that the victim was a university student named Darioush Rezaeinejad.
-- Associated Press
July 15, 2011
Iran is stepping up centrifuge development work at the Natanz uranium enrichment complex, according to diplomats. Two larger cascades (164 machines each) of more advanced centrifuge models, the IR-4 and IR-2m, are being installed. Previously, these centrifuge models had only been tested individually or in small chains.
-- Reuters
July 7, 2011
On July 6, 2011, Jirair Avanessian, of Glendale, California, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for his role in illegally shipping vacuum pump equipment, which could be used in nuclear projects, to Iran. Avanessian was arrested in January 2010 and pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges later that year.
-- Glendale News-Press
June 28, 2011
Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps fired 14 missiles as part of its Great Prophet-6 exercises. The missiles included a Ghadhr missile with a 1,800 kilometer range, two Shahab-1 missiles, two Shahab-2 missiles, and nine Zelzal unguided surface-to-surface missiles.
-- Agence France-Presse
June 27, 2011
An Iranian state television broadcast revealed underground silos that would make Iran's missiles less vulnerable to attack. An Iranian military official quoted in the broadcast stated that the silos housed a "swift-reaction" missile force, and that the missiles were "ready to hit the predetermined targets."
-- New York Times