Aug 8, 2021, 8:06 AM
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Headlines in Iranian English-language dailies on August 8

Tehran, IRNA - The following headlines appeared in English-language newspapers in the Iranian capital on Sunday, August 8, 2021:


-- President sets one-week deadline to finalize plan against COVID-19

Iranian President Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi set a one-week deadline to finalize a plan to transform the way of fighting against the COVID-19 as the country is grappling with a resurgence of coronavirus cases in the country in recent weeks.
Addressing the country’s National Headquarters for Managing and Fighting the Coronavirus on Saturday, Raeisi underlined “we should take active approaches in dealing with the coronavirus,” IRNA reported.
He also said that it was necessary to design appropriate mechanisms aimed at mobilizing volunteer forces and grassroots organizations to help the government in fighting the coronavirus.

-- Iran plans to add 10,000km to its railroad network

Iran’s outgoing roads and urban development minister said that his ministry has plans to construct 10,000 kilometers of railroad.
Pointing out that the length of the country’s railroad network has reached 14,000km, Mohammad Eslami said, “Eight rail lines in three provinces will be connected to the country’s railroad network. The projects for connecting Kurdestan, Ardebil, and Chaharmahal and Bakhtiari provinces to the national network have had a noticeable progress, and will be inaugurated in the coming months.

-- Akhangan Tower in Khorasan Razavi Province, an ancient building with amazing architecture

The city of Mashhad, the capital of Khorasan Razavi Province, which is home to the holy shrine of Imam Reza (PBUH), the eighth Shia Imam, is the center of religious pilgrimage in Iran.
One of the metropolises of the country, the city is also of special historical and cultural importance due to its ancient history and civilization.
Mashhad has become a health tourism hub in recent years as well.


-- Iran Rejects ‘Baseless’ G7 Statement

 Iran on Saturday denounced a “baseless” statement issued by the Group of Seven (G7) which accused the country of involvement in last week’s attack on an Israeli-managed ship off the coast of Oman, reiterating the Islamic Republic’s commitment to ensuring security in the strategic Persian Gulf.
“We strongly condemn the baseless statement by G7 foreign ministers and the High Representative of the European Union which has leveled groundless accusations against the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said. He said the “incident” was orchestrated just a few days before the inauguration of the new Iranian president.

-- Iraq Says It’s Gone Back to IMF for Loan of Up to $4 Billion

Iraq has recently restarted talks with the International Monetary Fund for a loan after earlier halting such efforts at securing aid, Finance Minister Ali Allawi told reporters.
Talks between the IMF and Iraq began last year amid the pandemic-related demand shock that sent oil prices tumbling but the discussions were tabled as crude and the country’s foreign reserves recovered. The government now is preemptively looking ahead for help to cover its budget deficit.

-- Iran’s Karateka Sajad Ganjzadeh Wins Tokyo 2020 Gold Medal

Iran’s karateka Sajad Ganjzadeh has won the gold medal in the men’s karate at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. The scintillating performance of the Iranian athlete reached its peak during the final bout of the +75-kilogram weight category on Saturday.
Ganjzadeh was behind by one point to four that his opponent from Saudi Arabia Tareg Hamedi had accumulated. But the tables turned when the Saudi martial artist violated the rules of fight by an infringement, which is technically known as Hansoku.


-- Iran diplomat lambasts Israel at UN Security Council

An Iranian diplomat at the United Nations Security Council has criticized Israel for playing victim to divert the attention of the public away from its crimes in the region. 

“We just heard a distorted statement about the Mercer Street vessel incident. Let me say a few words about it. First, our thoughts are with the families of those who have lost their loved ones in that unfortunate incident. Immediately following this event, Israeli officials accused Iran of the incident. This is what they usually do. It is a standard practice of the Israeli regime. Its aim is to divert the attention of the world public opinion from the regime’s crimes and inhumane practices in the region,” said Zahra Ershadi, ambassador and Charge d’affaires ad interim of the Permanent Mission of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations. 

-- Domestic contractors able to construct 1m housing units per year

- Deputy Head of Iran’s Mass Construction Association Iraj Rahbar has said the country’s contractors are capable of constructing one million housing units a year if the necessary funding and land is provided, IRNA reported.

Mentioning a plan for the construction of one million affordable housing units per year by the new government, Rahbar said: “allocating land and financing are two important factors for the successful implementation of any housing project, and if these two are provided, building one million housing units per year will be easily possible.”

-- Friday Mosque of Sojas: different from what you have already seen!

Full of mystic but modest in size and architecture, the Friday Mosque of Sojas was built sometime in the early 12th century during the Seljuk era.

The mosque is located approximately fifty-six kilometers south of Soltaniyeh in northwestern Iran. Although no date is mentioned in any of the inscription friezes found in the mosque itself, the articulation of its brick structure and decoration indicates that its approximate construction date has been determined to be around 1100.

Three elements are most prominent in the overall shape and design of the ancient mosque: a large square chamber, a dome, and the transition between the two. In plan, the square-shaped mosque is oriented towards the qibla, approximately north-south. It is entered from the north through an opening in the center of the elevation, directly opposite the mihrab in the center of the southern wall.


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