Hillary Clinton in Gulf to keep pressure on Iran

In Qatar, Mrs Clinton will address the annual US-Islamic World Forum and meet Turkish premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose country opposes the sanctions. US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has arrived in the Gulf to rally Arab support for tougher sanctions against Iran over its nuclear programme.

The three-day tour will include her first ever trip to Saudi Arabia. The Obama administration is stepping up pressure on Iran by launching a diplomatic offensive in the Gulf.

Washington wants the UN Security Council to impose a fourth round of sanctions on Tehran.

Iran says its nuclear programme is to generate electricity so it can export more of its valuable oil and gas, but the West suspects it of trying to develop atomic weapons.

Team USA Beats Iran, Earns Top Seed In FIBA World Championship 2010

Team USA just played basketball without worrying about any political agenda on Wednesday. Their recent win against Iran just put them at top spot in Group B with just a game against winless Tunisia left before the knockout rounds.

The United States and Iran set aside political tension between their countries by playing clean basketball that resulted to an expected win for Team USA, 88-51. Perhaps the most physical part of the game involved some playful banging between Memphis Grizzlies teammates Rudy Gay of the US and Iranian center Hamed Haddadi.

Unlike in their previous game against Brazil wherein the starters worked real hard for a 70-68 squeaker, the reserves played better this time as they did a clinical demolition of the Asian champions using their advantage in athletic abilities.

Kevin Love, Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose led scorers on the American side with 13, 12 and 11 points respectively while Hamed Haddadi paced Iran with 19 points.

The United States will need more contributions from their bench to make it deeper into the medal rounds. Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose have been the more consistent performers so far but they need more players to step up.

Toyota ends Car Exports to Iran

Due to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, one of the worlds leading companies in the car industry, Toyota halted its export car trade to the country. There has been international moves to put financial and commercial pressure to Terhan, Iran’s capital city.

Toyota has confirmed the news Thursday and according to Keisuke Kirimoto, Toyota spokesman, the company has been holding the shipments of its popular land cruiser model and as to until when will this halt would be, he said it is infinite. “We plan to continue to closely monitor this sensitive international situation,” Kirimoto added.

Toyota is just following the U.S. and United Nations sanctions on Tehran that was made last June. Toyota exported just 222 vehicles to Iran through May of this year, and a similar number in all of 2009 as what has been posted in CNN.

The US and the United Nations has imposed a sanction to the country last June believing that the country is having an atomic energy program aiming to produce nuclear weapons. Iran has been denying the allegation up to this time.

No one really knows who has been saying the truth. Thorough and complex investigation has been made to clear out everything. In fairness to Iran, if all these things are just hoax, their economy would be greatly affected as to the world has been shutting their doors to them.

Oroumieh Lake Now Becomes Solid Salt

You’re considered to be very lucky if your were able to take a picture of Iran’s largest salt water lake Oroumieh before it turned into solid salt. The lake is the third largest in the world and has been considered to be one of the most visited tourist spot of the country. Tourists love boating in the lake and take pictures which also gave the local residents extra income.

Sad to say, the lake is now turning into salt and tourists are already getting bored in visiting the place. It caused a domino effect to the nearby establishments as well. They might be closing soon due to losing income. Boatmen also gave up their job end up placing their boats at home and left with only memories of the time that the lake was still deep. Right now the deepest part of it is only 2 meters.

Aside from the tourism issues, nearby farms are also threatened because sometime storms carry the salt far afield. It would then damage the century old farm of apples, grapes, walnuts, almonds, onions, potatoes, as well as aromatic herbal drinks.

The salty winds not only will affect surrounding areas but also can damage farming in remote areas. -Masoud Mohammadian

He is an agriculture official in the eastern part of the lake. It is approximately 370 miles (600 kilometers) northwest of the capital Tehran.

Reports pointed the blame to a decade-long drought, consumption of water of the feeding rivers for farming, construction of dams and lot more.

The government is now trying to save the lake through a cloud-seeding program to increase rainfall in the area, a lowering of water consumption by irrigation systems, and supplying the lake with remote sources of water.