President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is to ask the Iranian parliament for a supplementary budget as his government's coffers will run empty three months before the end of the current Iranian fiscal year, the ISNA news agency reported on Monday.
"The budget allocated to the government will run out by the end of (the Iranian month of) Azar (December 22)," the agency quoted Ahmadinejad as saying.
"We are going to put forward a supplementary budget bill to cover the three remaining months (of the Iranian year, ending on March 20 2007) and the first two months of next year.
Also from Persian Journal:
Europe's second-highest court on Tuesday annulled an EU decision freezing the funds of an exiled Iranian opposition group that argues it was wrongly placed on the European Union's list of terrorist organizations.
The decision is likely to infuriate murderous mullahs but also ordinarny Iranians and may have wider implications for the EU's policy of banning alleged terrorist groups and freezing their assets.
MKO/MEK/NCRI/IRANFUCOS.COM and its many other phony names are "most hated" among ordinary Iranians.
EU member states ordered the freezing of funds of the People's Mujahideen (OMPI) in 2002. The armed wing of the France-based National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) has stated that it has renounced military activity since 2001.
The NCRI terrorists called the court decision "a great victory".
Jonathan Winer at Counterterrorism Blog has some thoughts on oversight:
This is a further sign of the growing effort to require judicial oversight of national security designations made by national governments in the area of economic sanctions against terrorism. In theory, the same justification could be given for requiring EU governments to prove that Al Qaeda is a threat to the EU and to give Osama bin Ladin and Al Qaeda the opportunity to be heard before their assets could be frozen,
When I was in the USG during the Clinton Administration, our recurrent nightmare in the use of economic sanctions was that a judge somewhere, someday, would decide that he or she had the independent right to review all of the facts we had used to make a national security designation of a particular group, to reach the judge's own decision of whether a designated entity was or wasn't a threat to the U.S.
It was my view then, and remains my view now, that to answer civil liberties concerns governments need to develop open source information to justify terrorist designations, and to place such a package of information in the public record each time a designation is made. Treasury-OFAC now often does this, although the accompanying public material tends to be very summary, and far less than that which might be needed in a judicial setting.
On the matter of MEK itself, Winer notes:
Besides having had an alliance with Saddam Hussein, the organization has or had ties with: Amal, the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Al Fatah, and other Palestinian factions, and reportedly the Taliban.
Remarks. The group's name, Mojahedin-e-Khalq or "People's Mujahedeen", suggests its mix of Marxist and Islamist ideology. This is a classic example of "The enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend." Not every anti-regime group is pro-democracy.