Ahmadinejad's cabinet

14 August 2005

A few hours ago, Ahmadinejad submitted his list of ministers to the Majlis for vote of confidence.

Is this an 'ultra-hardliner' cabinet? Names such as Mohseni Ejehi (Ministry of Information [security]) and Saffar Harandi (Ministry of Culture) would make it hard to answer this question in negative. Mohseni Ejehi is particularly notorious for the role he played as the chief prosecutor of the Special Court for the Clergy in the imprisonment of Abdollah Nouri (Khatami's first minister of interior and an outspoken critic of Khamenei). Prior to that, in 1998, he was the trial judge of the court that convicted Gholam Hossein Karbaschi, Tehran's former mayor, on embezzelment charges - while it was believed Karbaschi was paying the price for supporting Khatami in 1997 presidential elections. Mohseni Ejehi is not an unknown figure among 'ettelaati's' [security officers]. He served in a variety of positions related to the Minsitry of Information in 1980's and 1990's. After leaving the Ministry, he remained a major player in coordinating security operations against dissidents through other security agencies (with their operation headquarters in Sepah and the Judiciary), called 'parallel security agencies'.

Saffar Harandi is another name in the list that sticks out like a sore thumb. He is a member of the editorial board of Kayhan the hardliner Tehran daily. He is a strong advocate of suppressing any opposition voice. So, the censorship office of the ministry of culture will become very busy once he takes office.

But how are the public reacting to this list? In fact, what surprises me is that people, generally, do not really seem to care about these developments. I asked a few people if they were in any way concerned about the names on Ahmadinejad's list, and they simply said no. People listen to the news passively. They are too preoccupied with making the ends meet to care about censorship or a Gestapo-like ministry of information.

posted by IranHopes

Update: Iran president names industry outsider for top oil job on Sunday. Tehran mayor Ali Saeedlou, as oil minister of the world's fourth biggest crude producer.

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals

To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

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