Author Archives: socialinform

Photo Series: Autumn in Iran – Isfahan

Isfahan was once one of the largest cities in the world. It flourished from 1050 to 1722, particularly in the 16th century under the Safavid dynasty. Even today, the city retains much of its past glory. It is famous for its Persian–Islamic architecture, with many beautiful boulevards, covered bridges, palaces, mosques, and minarets. This led to the Persian proverb “Esfahān nesf-e- jahān ast” (Isfahan is half of the world).

The Naghsh-e Jahan Square in Isfahan is one of the largest city squares in the world and an outstanding example of Iranian and Islamic architecture. It has been designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. The city also has a wide variety of historic monuments and is known for the paintings, history and architecture.

Photo gallery: Beautiful pictures of Isfahan in autumn

Today Isfahan is the capital of Isfahan Province and with a population of 1,755,382 inhabitants is also Iran’s third largest city after Tehran and Mashhad. The city is located 340 kilometres south of Tehran, in the lush plain of the Zayanderud River, at the foothills of the Zagros mountain range.

The nearest mountain is Mount Soffeh (Kuh-e Soffeh) which is situated just south of Isfahan, at 1,590 metres (5,217 ft) above sea level on the eastern side of the Zagros Mountains. Isfahan has an arid climate but despite its altitude, the city remains hot during the summer. However, with low humidity and moderate temperatures at night, the climate can be very pleasant.

Source: Wikipedia | Isfahan, ISNA I, ISNA II, ISNA III, Borna News I, Borna News II

Iran’s Fars Province: Wildlife refuge at Neyriz Lakes & Kamjan Marshes (Photos)

The site lies in the eastern Zagros Mountains, 50-160 km east of Shiraz, and includes two very large salt-lakes -Tashk and Bakhtegan- and a large area of permanent freshwater marshes and seasonally flooded plains along the lower Kur river to the west (Kamjan Marshes). The two lakes are normally separated by narrow strips of land but may be joined during very wet winters to form a single expanse of water covering up to 136.500 ha.

Supporting more than 20.000 waterfowl, up to 50.000 flamingos and other species (e.g. ducks, geese, swans and cranes), the lakes are extremely important for breeding of a wide variety of species.

Kamjan Marshes formerly comprised ca. 10.000 ha of permanent and seasonal freshwater marshes. Although the marshes have been extensively modified by the drainage canals, 5.250 ha of wetland remains, including expanses of wet mudflats. Some irrigation canals are already silting up, and parts of the drained land are reverting to marsh. In addition, new marshes have developed at the mouths of the three main drainage canals where they enter the western ends of Lake Tashk and Lake Bakhtegan.

The two lakes, their delta and spring-fed marshes are designated as Wetlands of International Importance by the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands is an inter-governmental treaty established in 1971, establishing a framework for the stewardship and preservation of wetlands.

Sources: birdlife.org, ramsar.org, Wikipedia | Bakhtegan Lake, irandeserts.org (in Persian), MEHR News Agency, Tasnim News Agency I, Tasnim News Agency II, tishineh.com

Iran’s Kerman Province: Beautiful yardang landscape near Shahdad (Photos)

Shahdad Desert, on the western edge of Lut Desert, is home to unique natural structures called kalut (sand castles) by locals. The area is regarded as an archeological site of Kerman Province with graveyards, forts, and caravanserais which date back to the fourth millennium B.C.

The Lut Desert is a large salt desert located in the provinces of Kerman and Sistan and Baluchestan, Iran. It was inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 2016. The hottest part of Dasht-e Lut is Gandom Beryan, an approximately 480km² (190 sq mi) large plateau covered in dark lava, 80 km north of Shahdad city. According to a local legend, Gandom Beryan (toasted wheat) originates from an accident where a load of wheat was left in the desert which was then scorched by the heat in a few days. The surface of its sand has been measured at temperatures as high as 70 °C (159 °F), making it one of the world’s driest and hottest places.

These impressive formations which are scattered over 11.000km² across the desert are called yardangs. They form by erosion in environments where water is scarce and the prevailing winds are strong, uni-directional, and carry an abrasive sediment load.

Sources: Wikipedia | Lut Desert, Wikipedia | Yardang, Iran Front Page, BORNA News, wikimedia.org, irandeserts.com (in Persian), untoldiran.com, Mehr News Agency, 500px.com, panoramio.com

Undefeated Iran is Youth Volleyball World Champion 2017

Iran succeeded in their gold medal hunt as they defeated Russia 3-1, winning its second title in the FIVB Volleyball Boys’ U19 World Championship. Japan defeated South Korea for the bronze medal. Amir Hossein Esfandiar from Iran was elected the MVP and Amir Hossein Toukhteh was selected in the tournament’s dream team.

Porya Yali, Morteza Sharifi and Amirhossein Esfandiar dominated in offence as they combined for 54 of Iran’s 59 attacks. Yali led Iran in scoring with 29 points, Sharifi charted 19 points and was Iran’s most efficient hitter, while Esfandiar played consistently across all skill sets. Maksim Sapozhkov, who came off the bench in the second set, top scored for Russia with 16 points.

RESULTS (Iran)
Iran 3 : 2 Italy (25-16, 23-25, 23-25, 25-19, 15-12) – Pool D
Iran 3 : 0 Mexico (25-19, 25-12, 25-18) – Pool D
Iran 3 : 0 China (25-23, 25-18, 25-21) – Pool D
Iran 3 : 0 Czech Republic (25-22, 25-12, 25-19) – Pool D
Iran 3 : 0 Turkey (25-18, 25-21, 25-13) – Round of 16
Iran 3 : 0 Brazil (25-21, 25-20, 25-15) – Quarterfinals
Iran 3 : 0 South Korea (25-23, 25-20, 25-18) – Semifinals
Russia 1 : 3 Iran (20-25, 23-25, 25-21, 20-25) – Final

DREAM TEAM
Most Valuable Player: Amirhosseini Esfandiar (Iran)
Best Outside Spikers: Amirhosseini Esfandiar (Iran), Pavel Tetyukhin (Russia)
Best Middle Blockers: Artem Melnikov (Russia), Amir Hossein Toukhteh (Iran)
Best Setter: Shunsuke Nakamura (Japan)
Best Opposite Spiker: Im Donghyeok (South Korea)
Best Libero: Kenta Ichikawa (Japan)

The 2017 FIVB Volleyball Boys’ U19 World Championship was the fifteenth edition of the world championship for men’s national teams under the age of 19. The tournament was hosted by Bahrain in Riffa from 18 to 27 August 2017. 20 teams from the 5 confederations competed in the tournament.

Sources: FIVB | U19 Boys 2017 (News), Wikipedia | 2017 FIVB Boys’ U19 World Championship, Young Journalists Club, Borna News, IRNA

Iran wins 12 medals at the 2017 X World Games in Poland

The 2017 X World Games is a major international multi-sport event, meant for sports, disciplines or events within a sport, that are not contested in the Olympic Games, held in Wrocław, Poland.

Iran sent a delegation of 19 athletes that competed in 7 disciplines: Archery, Billiard sports, Ju-Jitsu, Karate, Kickboxing, Muaythai and Sport climbing, winning 12 medals (two gold, eight silver and two bronze). All Iranian athletes that did not win a medal reached the quarterfinals.

3214 athletes from 102 countries participated in a total of 201 events in 27 official sport disciplines as well as in 21 events in 4 invitational sports, that included American football, Indoor rowing, Kickboxing, and Motorcycle speedway.This is the first time that Floorball, Lacrosse and Muaythai have been included in the World Games as official sports.

Iran at the 2017 X World Games
16px-Gold_medal_icon.svg Karate – Men’s Kumite 84kg: Zabiollah Poorshab
16px-Gold_medal_icon.svg Sport Climbing – Men’s Speed: Reza Alipourshenazandifar
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Archery – Men’s Compound: Esmaeil Ebadi
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Ju-Jitsu –
Men’s 94kg Fighting: Mohsen Hamid Aghchay
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Karate –
Women’s Kumite +68kg: Hamideh Abbasali
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Karate –
Men’s Kumite 60kg: Amir Mehdizadeh
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Karate –
Men’s Kumite 75kg: Aliasghar Asiabari
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Karate –
Men’s Kumite +84kg: Sajad Ganjzadeh
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Muaythai –
Men’s 63.5kg: Ali Zarinfar
16px-Silver_medal_icon.svg Muaythai –
Men’s 71kg: Masoud Minaei
Bronze_medal_icon.svg Billiard Sports – Mixed Snooker: Soheil Vahedi
Bronze_medal_icon.svg Kickboxing Men’s K1 86kg: Omid Nosrati (* invitational sport)

Sources: Wikipedia | 2017 World Games, 2017 X World Games | Iranian medals, Wikipedia | Iran at the 2017 World Games, Facebook @TWG2017

Iranian students win 10 medals at chemistry and math Olympiads

Iranian high school students received two gold, three silver, and one bronze medals in the 58th International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO 2017) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Out of 111 countries, the Iranian team achieved fifth place after South Korea, Vietnam, China and USA.

Earlier this month, Iran ranked third in the 49th Chemistry Olympiad (IChO 2017), behind Taiwan and the USA. The event, that was held in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand hosted 297 students from 76 countries.

Team Iran at IMO 2017
Gold medal winners: Amir Mojtaba Sabur and Aryo Lotfi Jandaghi
Silver medal winners: Seyed Mahdavi Tikdari, Taha Miranzadeh and Farhood Rostamkhani
Bronze medal winner: Soroush Taslimi

Team Iran at IChO 2017
Gold medal winners: Amirabbas Kazeminia, Hossein Behnoush and Parsa Pirouz
Silver medal winner: Soroush Baniani

The best placed Iranian participant in the IMO’s hall of fame is Maryam Mirzakhani, the first and to-date only female winner of the Fields Medal since its inception in 1936. She earned a gold medal in 1994 and in 1995 she notched a perfect score and another gold medal, as the first female to compete with Iran’s International Mathematical Olympiad team.

The International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO) is an annual six-problem mathematical olympiad for pre-college students, and is the oldest of the International Science Olympiads. The first IMO was held in Romania in 1959.

The International Chemistry Olympiad, one of the International Science Olympiads, is an annual academic competition for high school students. The first IChO was held 1968 in Prague, Czechoslovakia.

Sources: imo-official.org I, imo-official.org II, Wikipedia | IMO, Facebook @IMO2017Rio, bigschool.vn, icho2017.sc.mahidol.ac.th, Tehran Times, Wikipedia | IChO, Facebook @sak.otai

Iran’s National Botanical Garden in Tehran (Photos)

Founded in 1968, the garden extends over an area of about 150ha (370ac) and is planned to be the main center for horticulture and plant taxonomy in Iran.

A herbarium of Iranian plants is gradually being built up and now consists of some 160,000 species. It also contains gardens of non-Iranian plants, an arboretum, six lakes, hills (to represent the Alborz and Zagros mountains), a rock garden, a waterfall, a wetland, a river about 1 km long, systematic area, fruit garden, picnic area with some pavilions, desert plants areas, a salt lake and a wadi (a dry, ephemeral, riverbed that contains water only during times of heavy rain). The botanical and horticultural library has more than 11.000 volumes.

The area, located at 1320m altitude by the freeway between Tehran and Karaj, is flat and slopes gently to the south. The Albourz Mountains forms the background. The climate is dry with an average annual precipitation of about 240 mm falling between November and May. Temperature reaches as much as 42–43ºC during July and August. During winter the temperature may fall to –10ºC or lower. The natural vegetation of the area is dry Artemisia Siberia steppe.

Sources: Research Institute of Forests and Rangelands, Wikipedia, instagram @nbgiran, Mehr News Agency (MNA) 1, MNA 2, MNA 3, Tehran Picture, tishineh.com, netbaran.com, behtarynha.com