Iran's View » Politics http://www.iransview.com The Persian Prespective Sun, 07 Oct 2018 05:33:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.25 Trump-Kim Meeting Saw an Iranian Representativehttp://www.iransview.com/trump-kim-meeting-saw-an-iranian-representative/1906/ http://www.iransview.com/trump-kim-meeting-saw-an-iranian-representative/1906/#comments Fri, 15 Jun 2018 05:52:36 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1906 Iranians were surprised last week when they saw a familiar face in a historic meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un, Persian rug, a symbol of the country's rich history and culture on the world stage.

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U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met face-to-face on Tuesday 12 June in Singapore. This photo shows a red Persian rug laid in the room.

U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un met face-to-face on Tuesday 12 June in Singapore.
This photo shows a red Persian rug laid in the room.

Iranians were surprised last week when they saw a familiar face in a historic meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un, Persian rug, a symbol of the country’s rich history and culture on the world stage.

The photos taken during an informal meeting between the two leaders showed a red Heris rug laid in the room.
The summit has been widely regarded as a diplomatic coup for North Korea, which repeated its commitment towards denuclearisation in a joint statement.

The hand-woven Heris rugs native to Iran’s northwestern province of Azerbaijan Sharqi, a major carpet-weaving zone in Iran.

Heriz rugs are Persian rugs from the area of Heris, East Azerbaijan in northwest Iran, northeast of Tabriz. Such rugs are produced in the village of the same name in the slopes of Mount Sabalan. Heriz carpets are durable and hard-wearing and they can last for generations.

Heriz rugs are Persian rugs from the area of Heris, East Azerbaijan in northwest Iran, northeast of Tabriz. Such rugs are produced in the village of the same name in the slopes of Mount Sabalan. Heriz carpets are durable and hard-wearing and they can last for generations.

Azerbaijan Sharqi’s neighboring province of Ardabil, Isfahan in central Iran and Kerman in the country’s southeast are other major carpet-weaving zones, each having its own unique style.

Carpet weaving has a history of 2,500 years in Iran, ingrained in the country’s national identity. There are currently as many as 1 million weavers across the country, including 700,000 full-time artisans involved in the profession.  
Iranian carpets are currently exported to 80 countries, among whom the US holds a special place.

The US has long been a major market for Iran’s hand-woven carpets but unilateral US sanctions have hurt Iran’s export to the country in recent years.

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Israeli- Palestinian Conflict: Iran Offers a Practical, Democratic Solutionhttp://www.iransview.com/israeli-palestinian-conflict-iran-offers-a-practical-democratic-solution/1897/ http://www.iransview.com/israeli-palestinian-conflict-iran-offers-a-practical-democratic-solution/1897/#comments Sun, 10 Jun 2018 21:06:54 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1897 Iran Offers a Practical, Democratic Solution to the Israeli- Palestinian Conflict

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Ayatollah Khamenei  meeting with A group of university professors and researchers on June 10, 2018. (Photo: Khamenei.ir)

Ayatollah Khamenei meeting with A group of university professors and researchers on June 10, 2018. (Photo: Khamenei.ir)

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei says his country supports a democratic solution for the Palestinian- Israeli conflict.

“Now imagine the most cruel person of our time, the child-murderer prime minister of the Zionist Regime [Benjamin Netanyahu] goes to Europe and plays innocent, saying Iran wants to destroy them,” said Ayatollah Khamenei during his meeting with A group of university professors and researchers on June 10, 2018.

Who Wanted to Throw Israelis into the Sea?

“They are truly pioneers in oppression and cruelty throughout history. The European addressee listens and shakes his head, without mentioning their [Israel’s] crimes in Gaza and Quds,” he said adding: “The Islamic Republic acts logically on all matters. On the matter of the Zionist Regime, [Egypt’s late President] Jamal Abdul-Nasser proclaimed they would throw the Jewish people into the sea. We never made such remarks.”

“From day one, we announced a plan. We said, today democracy is a modern method that the entire world’s population agrees on. We said, for decision making on the historical country of Palestine, refer to the Palestinian people. This plan is registered with the United Nations as the statement of the Islamic Republic.”

“Those who are true Palestinians and have been living in Palestine over a hundred years ago–Muslims, Christians and Jews–where ever they are, either in the occupied lands or outside of them. They should be surveyed. Their vote should be applied.”

“Is this a bad opinion?” he asked adding: “The Europeans refuse to understand this. Then, that child-murderer, vicious oppressor plays innocent, saying Iran wants to kill several million people out of their population.”

What is Iran’s plan for Palestinian Issue?
Iran officially announced its proposed solution in 2012 during the 16th Non-Aligned Summit in Tehran.
Iran suggests that all current and former inhabitants of the Palestinian territory should participate in a referendum and decide about their fate and future. Iran’s leader described the country’s suggestion in his Inaugural Speech at the 16th Non-Aligned Summit.

“All the Palestinians – both the current citizens of Palestine and those who have been forced to immigrate to other countries but have preserved their Palestinian identity, including Muslims, Christians and Jews – should take part in a carefully supervised and confidence-building referendum and chose the political system of their country, and all the Palestinians who have suffered from years of exile should return to their country and take part in this referendum and then help draft a Constitution and hold elections. Peace will then be established,” he said during his speech in 2012.
Read Iran’s View’s detailed report about the solutions for the Palestinian- Israeli conflict suggested by different parties.

 

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Exclusive: Iran’s Thrilling Hostage Rescue Operation in Africa Detailedhttp://www.iransview.com/exclusive-irans-thrilling-hostage-rescue-operation-in-africa-detailed/1889/ http://www.iransview.com/exclusive-irans-thrilling-hostage-rescue-operation-in-africa-detailed/1889/#comments Sun, 10 Jun 2018 10:34:46 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1889 Exclusive: Iran's Thrilling Hostage Rescue Operation in Africa Detailed

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Iran's Intel Minister Mahmoud Alavi hugs the recently freed hostages in Tehran on "Friday".

Iran’s Intel Minister Mahmoud Alavi hugs the recently freed hostages in Tehran.

After three years, Iran’s intelligence forces reveal how meticulously they have been following up the operation of rescuing Iranian sailors from the captivity of pirates in Somalia, and how important it was, for their operation, to be kept secret until sailors’ arrival to Tehran.
Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi said on Thursday that his ministry’s agents secured the fishermen’s release through a long process and despite tight security controls by the pirates.

The sailors Masoud Balouchi, Ahmad Balouchi, Adam Balouchi and Shir-Mohammad Tabezar, kidnapped three years ago in international waters near Somalia were welcomed by Alavi in Tehran on Thursday.

An Iranian intelligence expert who spoke to Iran’s View on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the operation, brought light to some details of Iranian intelligence efforts during the past three years. Since Iran’s Intelligence officials rarely, if ever, promote and publicize their successful operations, interviews as such showcase Iran’s capabilities and strengths, especially in a region predominantly under control of United States’ and Israel’s intelligence forces, who for long have bragged about their successes in fight against terrorism.

Oversea Counterintelligence Operations Against US 

In fact, Iran has shown deeper roots and further expanded network in fight against terrorism in Africa, according to the fore mentioned intelligence official, who stated Iran’s intelligence forces have previously secured Iranian citizens’ safety in different occasions. 

The Iranian intelligence expert told Iran’s View–under conditions of anonymity–they have been able to secure the release of the country’s nationals captured in different parts of the world. However, these operations are usually shrouded in secrecy not publicized in mainstream media. In some cases, the forces could also secure the release of Iranians captured by the US over alleged sanction-busting attempts.

 

 sailors’ have shared the sorrow of losing eight other friends and relatives during hunger and torture and have shown their tortured bodies, burnt skins, marks of broken bones, and pulled out teeth to the camera

Sailors’ have shared the sorrow of losing eight other friends and relatives during hunger and torture and have shown their tortured bodies, burnt skins, marks of broken bones, and pulled out teeth to the camera.

 

In an interview with Jam e Jam news paper, four recently-rescued sailors’ have shared the sorrow of losing eight other friends and relatives during hunger and torture and have shown their tortured bodies, burnt skins, marks of broken bones, and pulled out teeth to the camera, and amidst all this sorrow, they have also shared their deep and tremendous thankfulness to their rescuers, as their freedom has seemed out of the horizon to them, for a very long time. Being so not aware of news, politics, and current world, the sailors even thanked the deceased Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani for their freedom, and wished him health, upon their arrival in the airport, according to Jam-e-Jam’s interview.

Diplomatic Bids Failed

“The fishermen’s boat got captivated by Somalian pirates in March 2015, 460 kilometers away from Somalian shore. We started our efforts to set the captivated sailors free since then.” Iranian intelligence official expert on the case said.

The Intelligence expert said the ministry started its overseas operation after attempts through diplomatic channels were not making any progress.

The intelligence operation for the release of the sailors was highly challenging as the sailors were not held by a government or an official organization, he said.

Unsuccessful Prisoner Swap

The expert added that the Intelligence Ministry arranged a prisoner swap with one of the pirates’ leaders to free the four fishermen but that plan hit the wall when the pirates did not show up at the arranged rendezvous.

The Iranian Navy has been conducting anti-piracy patrols in the Gulf of Aden where Somali pirates frequently attacked ships since November 2008 to safeguard maritime traffic, especially for the country’s ships and oil tankers.

During their safeguard operations, the Iranian navy thwarted several hijacking attempts by the pirates and captured some them.

The sailors recall their horrific experience of being tortures at the hands of pirates

The sailors recall their horrific experience of being tortures at the hands of pirates.

In 2017 we arranged a prisoner swap with one of the pirates’ leaders to give back four imprisoned pirates and set the sailors free but that plan was aborted as the captors did not show up.
The operation was conducted by the Intelligence Ministry in close collaboration with the Quds Force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC)–the commando arm of forces which is in charge of overseas operations, he told the daily.

Tanzania Operation

The official continued: “In the second stage we sent a team from Tanzania to the region to rescue the sailors by sea. A fishing boat was chosen to conduct the mission off the coast of to Kismayo peninsula in southeastern Somalia.
But the ship movements were restricted after it became clear that US drone are conducting reconnaissance operation in the area over suspected Al-Qaeda activities.

The mission was finally called off after the ship’s manouvering ability in the area were heavily restricted by the US drones’ presence, the intelligence official said, highlighting the fact that the operation could be severely damaged if the US became aware of it.

Finally, we operated on the ground and sat our captivated sailors free from the hands of the pirates. Due to the complexity of the return process we didn’t let sailors contact their families during the operation and until they landed in Iran we didn’t announce the news.”

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US Bans Iranian Presidential Aircrafthttp://www.iransview.com/us-bans-iranian-presidential-aircraft/1850/ http://www.iransview.com/us-bans-iranian-presidential-aircraft/1850/#comments Thu, 24 May 2018 20:05:54 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1850 The US has imposed new sanctions against a number of aircraft providing goods and services to four Iranian airlines including the operator of Iranian Presidential Aircraft.

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The US has imposed new sanctions against a number of aircraft providing goods and services to four Iranian airlines including the operator of Iranian Presidential Aircraft.

The sanctions announced by the US Treasury Department on Thursday, targeted the entities cooperating with Iran’s Mahan Air, Caspian Air, Meraj Air, Pouya Air and Dena Air, which operates the airplane Iranian President Rouhani uses for his official travels.

According to Bourseandbazaar, an Iranian business news site, Dena Airways is the company which operates EP-DAA, an Airbus A340. Until November 2017, the aircraft was registered to Meraj Airways, an entity that was previously sanctioned as part of the Specially Designated Nationals list, known as the SDN list.

In Early February, German fuel companies refused to refuel Iranian foreign minister’s plane out of fear they would violate US sanctions against Iran.
The incident almost prevented Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif from attending the Munich Security Conference.

The US also imposed sanctions against nine Iranian and Turkish individuals and companies after President Trump withdraw from the nuclear deal between Iran and five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany. Under the deal, US was obligated to avoid imposing new sanctions against Iran.

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How Iran and EU should React to US Withdrawal of Nuclear Deal?http://www.iransview.com/how-iran-and-eu-should-response-to-us-withdrawal-of-nuclear-deal/1832/ http://www.iransview.com/how-iran-and-eu-should-response-to-us-withdrawal-of-nuclear-deal/1832/#comments Tue, 15 May 2018 13:49:08 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1832 By Mostafa Entezari* Immediately after President Trump announced US withdrawal of Iranian nuclear deal (JCPOA), his Iranian counterpart said that the country would not exit from the JCPOA, if European states guarantee Tehran’s interests clarified in the agreement. This translated into Tehran’s intensive negotiations with the Europe, Russia and China to convince them to enforce […]

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Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) meets with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, at the EU headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, May 15, 2018.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) meets with EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, at the EU headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, May 15, 2018.

By Mostafa Entezari*

Immediately after President Trump announced US withdrawal of Iranian nuclear deal (JCPOA), his Iranian counterpart said that the country would not exit from the JCPOA, if European states guarantee Tehran’s interests clarified in the agreement. This translated into Tehran’s intensive negotiations with the Europe, Russia and China to convince them to enforce laws to neutralize US sanctions against Iran and not to follow Trump.

Europeans have a similar experience during1990s when they protected European companies against the pressure of White House and its unilateral Cuba sanctions.

Now, fearing the Europeans resistance, the United States is trying to use its regional leverages to kill the Iran deal and fight back Europeans’ initiatives. In such situation, the United States’ regional allies are trying to prevent Europe to work with Iran by their own methods and tricks.
Stressing issues including Iran- EU differences on human rights, missile programs and regional policies, is a strategy that can dissuade Europe from confronting Washington and put Europe against Iran.

In other hand, just one day after Trump’s announcement to withdraw from JCPOA, Israel attacks Syria to form a kind of confrontation with Iran and put the world against Tehran.

But Iran ignored the attacks with cleverness. However, it is anticipated that such scenarios will be implemented again. This time with a focus on issues of human rights, Iran’s military centers and specific regional challenges.
How smart Iran manages this psychological tricks, or how much Europe protects itself from the Plan? Time will tell.

 * Mostafa Entezari is a regular contributor to Iranian media including Jame-jam Daily, Iranian state TV, Fars News. He is a Phd candidate in Public Policy. @mstfentezari

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Last night in Tehranhttp://www.iransview.com/last-night-in-tehran/1828/ http://www.iransview.com/last-night-in-tehran/1828/#comments Thu, 03 May 2018 14:37:00 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1828 Only one year ago, the two Koreas fired missiles to show off how capable and determined they are to destroy the other by force. The verbal threats exchanged after each fire work left a deep scar and exacerbated the already existing animosity against each other. The photo of the two Presidents reminds me of the one I saw immediately after my appointment as Korean ambassador to Iran...

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By Seung-ho KIM
Korean Ambassador

At the time when this article will be printed, I may be in the plane bound for Korea and more probably already arrived at the hustle bustle city of Seoul, after wrapping up my ambassadorial duty in Iran. My last day in Tehran is coincided with the historical meeting between the two Korean Presidents.

Only one year ago, the two Koreas fired missiles to show off how capable and determined they are to destroy the other by force. The verbal threats exchanged after each fire work left a deep scar and exacerbated the already existing animosity against each other. The photo of the two Presidents reminds me of the one I saw immediately after my appointment as Korean ambassador to Iran.

It was the signing ceremony of the JCPOA in which the foreign ministers of the most powerful nations were lined up with Dr. Zarif at the center. That photo thrilled me. As a diplomat, I know how difficult it is for a small country to negotiate with the dominating powers even one by one. These Iranians who successfully manage the most influential states all alone are going to be my counterparts. I felt myself shrunk. I also jealously admired not what they achieved but how they achieved. Through dialogue, Iran did it.

On the last day in Tehran, I finally regain my pride thanks to the summit dialogue between the two Koreas. I also feel indebted to Iranians because the Korean dialogue was inspired, I believe, one way or another by the Iranian dialogue with the majors in solving the nuclear issue.

Dialogue was the major theme that I imposed on myself as Ambassador to Iran. I did not want our two countries relations to be overly dominated with commercial interests, mostly represented by trade. Dialogue is not a mere exchange of verbal sounds. It is rather a spiritual way of communication to reach your friends’ soul and heart. Korea and Iranian relation is often mystified by the large mathematical figure of trade, which is at best a myopic, selfish way that aims at your wallet, not heart.

A stabilized and balanced relation was the lighthouse that I navigated towards during my stay in Iran as Ambassador. I am not sure that my efforts were effective enough, desperate enough to bridge the geographical and cultural gap between the two countries. However, on leaving Iran, I can humbly enumerate several things that can be interpreted as a sign of dialogue in good faith. Recently a Korea section was opened at the Iranian national library. Special exhibitions for national museum artifacts were reciprocally organized both in Tehran and Seoul. Two countries’ symphony orchestra performed each other’s music. Large cultural delegation visited several times not only in Tehran but also in Isfahan. My residence was offered many times to Iranian artists for their personal exhibition.

Every Thursday, Korean embassy is open to the public for Korean movies. Even in economic fields, a system was set up for sharing technologies among small and medium companies. A framework agreement was signed in order to lend up to 8 billion euro to the large Iranian projects where Korean companies are allowed to participate. All of these would have not been realized as planned without dedicated support of the Iranian entities concerned. During my tenure here, I have been surrounded with willing Iranians who are eagerly helpful and curious in any matters related to Korea. I thank them.
Upon arrival three years ago, I found these Iranians are full of confidence, pride and expectation for the future that are yet shaped but brought by themselves through the nuclear deal. On leaving this country, I sense some anxiety and uncertainty of my Iranian friends for the future that could be externally enforced this time. But I am rather optimistic.

The Inter-Korean dialogue may in return churn mood of dialogue in the stage of international affairs. I trust the capability of Iranian diplomacy which stunned the world three years ago. Guarding the deal with sympathetic friends could be easier than making one in a hostile and enforcing atmosphere. Iran, seen outside by a diplomat of thirty years’ experience is much more influential than Iranians thought to be inside.
My stuff is already shipped away. The things I carry with are intangible. My deep indebtedness to Iranians, admiration for their maturity and thoughtfulness, their overdosed hospitality and kindness are fully loaded in my heart. If our two peoples’ hearts are to be charged like mine, heartfelt dialogue among us will expand and cultivate a full blown relation between Iran and Korea.

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Iran Hoping to Persuade India to Maintain Balance in Ties with Israel, Muslimshttp://www.iransview.com/iran-hoping-to-persuade-india-to-maintain-balance-in-ties-with-israel-muslims/1824/ http://www.iransview.com/iran-hoping-to-persuade-india-to-maintain-balance-in-ties-with-israel-muslims/1824/#comments Fri, 23 Feb 2018 15:48:11 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1824 #Iran Hoping to Persuade #India to Maintain Balance in Ties with #Israel, Muslims Countries

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Iran's President Hassan Rouhani (front R) welcomes India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Tehran, Iran May 23, 2016.  Photo: President.ir

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani (front R) welcomes India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Tehran, Iran May 23, 2016.
Photo: President.ir

India and Israel have had friendly ties for many years, but the rapid expansion of these ties, especially in military and intelligence areas, has become a source of concern for Muslim countries.

Given India’s history of defending Palestinians’ rights within the framework of the Non-Aligned Movement, there is the hope that the negotiations of Iranian officials during Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s recent visit to New Delhi could persuade India to maintain a balance in its ties with the Israel and Muslim countries.

Rouhani’s three-day visit to India from February 15 took place shortly after the Israeli premier’s trip to India, as well as the visit of the Indian prime minister to Israel and was the first visit by an Iranian president to the country since Ahmadinejad’s three-hour stay stopover in 2008. During Rouhani’s trip, a number of important agreements were signed. This comes as the Indians did not have a satisfactory performance in their economic relations with the Islamic Republic.

Rouhani began his journey from Hyderabad, an important city with more than 30 percent of Muslim population with a history of political and cultural influence by Iran. Over there, the Iranian president held a meeting with Muslim scholars at the Friday prayers of the Sunni-majority city and delivered a sermon among the worshippers.

Rouhani in India wished that the relations between Tehran and Delhi would once again be warm and close as in the time of the two countries’ ancestors. He, of course, took the first step towards fulfiling this wish with his presence in Hyderabad and visiting historical works inspired by Iranian culture and consulting with Indian Muslims. In this city, he emphasized the Islamic Republic’s desire to expand cultural ties with India.

A consultative meeting with Muslim scholars and the emphasis of the Iranian president on the history of the cultural and Islamic ties between the two countries had another strategic message for India. In fact, Iran, as one of the most important Muslim countries with a long history of presence in India, can help resolve the long-standing conflicts between Pakistan and India and reduce the negative security implications of the conflicts in the region.

In terms of economic relations, specialists believe India’s delay in implementing the Chabahar port development project had a negative message for the Iranians, confirming the analyses that Delhi believes its future ties with Tehran would be shaped by the decisions of the US.

The Chabahar project is currently in progress, and during Rouhani’s visit to India, 15 cooperation agreements were also signed by the two countries’ high-ranking officials.

However, taking into consideration the capacities of the two countries for cooperation, one can say the economic relations between Iran and India are not close enough.

This article was first published on IFP.

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Nuclear Deal, Failure for Iran: Senior Officialhttp://www.iransview.com/nuclear-deal-failure-for-iran-senior-official/1803/ http://www.iransview.com/nuclear-deal-failure-for-iran-senior-official/1803/#comments Tue, 09 Jan 2018 17:09:16 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1803 A senior Iranian Foreign Ministry official said the Iran’s nuclear deal with the P5+1 group, known as JCPOA, proved to be a success story, but only for the P5+1. He made the remarks in sideline of the Tehran Security Conference on Monday. More than 200 Iranian and international political figures and analysts attended the one-day event.

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From Left: Abbas Araghchi, Mogens Lykketoft, Massimo D’Alema, Jack Straw, Yusuf bin Alawi and Kamal Kharrazi in a panel of Tehran Security Conference, January 8, 2018.

 

A senior Iranian Foreign Ministry official said the Iran’s nuclear deal with the P5+1 group, known as JCPOA, proved to be a success story, but only for the P5+1. He made the remarks in sideline of the Tehran Security Conference on Monday. More than 200 Iranian and international political figures and analysts attended the one-day event.  

“Iran has fully lived up to its commitments regarding the deal as it has been repeatedly, 10 times, confirmed by the IAEA. However, Iran and the Iranian people would not remember the deal as a success story as the other side of the agreement has not fully honored its obligations. As a matter of fact, Iran has not benefited from easing of the sanctions,” he said during a meeting with a number of European politicians, according to Iran’s View Mojtaba Mousavi.

 

Trump must decide by January 12 whether to extend sanctions waivers. “What will happens if President Trump does not waive the sanctions and go out of the deal?” the official asked. “What I can tell you is that we have all received our instructions. The Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization (IAEO) is fully prepared to speed up our nuclear program and we have also our instructions to go and activate the mechanism in the JCPOA to deal with this non-compliance of the deal by the US.” 

Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization chief had earlier warned that the country would reconsider its cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) if the US fails to implement its commitments as per the nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.

 

Speaking in a telephone conversation with IAEA Director-General Yukiya Amano on Monday, Ali Akbar Salehi warned about the consequences of Washington’s possible withdrawal from the JCPOA.

 

Iran Not Convinced Europe Will Take Its Side after US Withdrawal

“It is the time for Trump to re-certify Iran’s compliance with the JCPOA and extend the waivers. If he refuses to do that, it means the end of JCPOA for the US. But is this the end of the deal for Iran and other parties as well? To be honest, it depends on the Europeans’ reaction,” the senior Iranian official added.
“Europeans must convince Iran that they can deliver on their JCPOA commitments without the US. It’s certainly a very big question. To be frank, however, we are not convinced that Europeans would do that. We are not convinced that Europeans can support their own companies against the US and encourage them to work with Iran in case the US sanctions are back.”

“Europeans have so far failed to convince Iran that they can maintain the deal without the US,” he went on to say.
“Actually Europeans played a very good role in past two or three months to prevent the US Congress from doing anything wrong regarding the JCPOA but I’m not sure they can do the same with President Trump himself.”

It seems that Iranian administration has concluded that the US is determined to exit from the nuclear deal. Iranian political circles are still discussing the best way to react to the failure of the JCPOA and some senior politicians believe that Iran’s reaction should be independent from the EU reaction to the US.

 

“If the US exit from the deal, Iran must leave the deal. We can’t again rely on the Europeans weak promises, we should put an end to this sequence of damages as soon as US kills the nuclear deal,” says Hossein Lotfi, a conservative political activist.

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Saudi Arabia and New World Disorderhttp://www.iransview.com/saudi-arabia-and-new-world-disorder/1791/ http://www.iransview.com/saudi-arabia-and-new-world-disorder/1791/#comments Sun, 12 Nov 2017 15:29:11 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1791 Saudi’s young leaders are now well versed in these American tricks on breaking the laws in an apparently legal manner. If we take a look at the structure of American sanctions against Iran, and in particular the post-JCPOA sanctions, we see a complex process of legislation that allow the United States to act contrary to the objectives of these laws and treaties without violating international treaties and laws. This is the trick that the new Saudi leaders have taken on the issue of Bahrain, Yemen and now Lebanon, in spite of the fact that their performance seems not as suitable as their American mentors.

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Mohammad bin Salman

Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, also known as MBS, is the Crown Prince of Saudi/ Photo: Middle East Monitor

A Farsi version of this article appeared in the Iran’s state newspaper Jam-E-Jam, November 12, 2016.

Saudi Arabia has introduced a new phenomenon to the modern world; a kind of political hostage-taking, in which a tribal regime has availed itself of modern international legal instruments to advance its primitive policies. Mandatory residence and resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri in Saudi Arabia has put forth important questions regarding the reason, legal consequences, response of the countries and international organizations to it, and finally the issue of “breaking the law through legal instruments”- to which the United States has given rise-, and the essay makes an attempt to deal with them.

Why is Saudi Arabia removing its most important ally in Lebanon?
Regional developments have long been against Saudi’s desire; on the one hand, the victory of the Axis of Resistance in the war on terrorism in Syria and Iraq has increased Iran’s regional power and influence; on the other hand, the decrease of Saudi Arabia’s direct military intervention in Yemen, the disagreements between the countries of the Arabian Gulf region and also the unsuccessful efforts to remove Lebanon’s Hezbollah from the power structure have all turned Saudi Arabia into a potential loser in the transition period in the regional power system in the Middle East.
Saudi Arabia has tried to introduce Hezbollah and Iran as the cause of the resignation of Saad Hariri and the emergence of a political void in the Lebanese sovereignty structure so that it could create tension and internal disagreements against the Axis of Resistance while increasing economic pressure on Lebanon as well as making the crisis so critical in such a manner that the only way to sustain the Axis of Resistance would be the retreat of Hezbollah and other political groups opposed to Saudi. In practice, however, the vigilance of Hezbollah and al-Mustaqbal led, unlike Saudi’s desire, to strengthening the unity of the Lebanese, and even the most important Saudi allies in the Lebanese sovereignty were forced to take a firm stand against Saudi Arabia.

An American trick for Breaking the Law through Legal Instruments
Pointing to Hariri’s Lebanese-Saudi citizenship, some analysts say that Saudi Arabia has tried to rescind Hariri’s political immunity following his resignation so that they can detain him as a Saudi citizen by plotting corruption charges. In accordance with Articles 29 and 31 of the Vienna Convention on political relations, officials, including heads of states, enjoy full political and judicial immunity and cannot be detained at any time. Another important point is that the cancellation of a political envoy’s immunity is feasible only through the written declaration of the sending country. Therefore, in this particular case, even if Hariri resigned willingly, the immunities will be enforced until the Lebanese government declares cancellation of his political immunity formally and through a written declaration, and Saudi Arabia cannot detain or rather arrest him under the pretext of Hariri’s Saudi citizenship.
Maybe that is the reason why Saudi Arabia refuses to announce Hariri’s arrest publicly. Saudi’s young leaders are now well versed in these American tricks on breaking the laws in an apparently legal manner. If we take a look at the structure of American sanctions against Iran, and in particular the post-JCPOA sanctions, we see a complex process of legislation that allow the United States to act contrary to the objectives of these laws and treaties without violating international treaties and laws. This is the trick that the new Saudi leaders have taken on the issue of Bahrain, Yemen and now Lebanon, in spite of the fact that their performance seems not as suitable as their American mentors.

Where is the Security Council?
But the third question to be answered is the role of international organizations and the Security Council in solving the Saudi crisis and the modern process of “hostage-taking of officials” by this country. Now even the US State Department, the most important Saudi ally, has implicitly confessed Hariri’s capture in Saudi Arabia. Hostage-taking of the head of government of a foreign country is unprecedented in the history of contemporary international relations and to ridicule all the values and principles that underpinned the creation of the United Nations, the Security Council and international law over the past few decades. If Saudi’s oil and financial strength is the reason why these international institutions are completely silent, then perhaps it would be better to talk about the end of the Western international system and the attempt to formulate a new and collective mechanism, which is what Iran is preparing for.

*Mojtaba Mousavi is the founder and editor of Iran’s View

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Joint Action with Iran a Test for Independence of European Businesseshttp://www.iransview.com/joint-action-with-iran-a-test-for-independence-of-european-businesses/1781/ http://www.iransview.com/joint-action-with-iran-a-test-for-independence-of-european-businesses/1781/#comments Mon, 16 Oct 2017 21:47:58 +0000 http://www.iransview.com/?p=1781 In light of US President Donald Trump’s decision to decertify Iran deal caused heated debate inside Iran about the Trump’s plan for the JCPOA and the best Iranian reaction to US disavowing the nuclear deal. Mojtaba Mousavi tried to discuss the issue with Barbara Slavin, an American expert on Iran and a President Trump critic who […]

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (L) attends a meeting with France's Emmanuel Macron (R), Movement of the Enterprises of France (MEDEF) president Pierre Gattaz (2nd-R) and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius (3rd-R) in Paris on January 27, 2016. AFP PHOTO

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (L) attends a meeting with France’s Emmanuel Macron (R), Movement of the Enterprises of France (MEDEF) president Pierre Gattaz (2nd-R) and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius (3rd-R) in Paris on January 27, 2016. AFP PHOTO

In light of US President Donald Trump’s decision to decertify Iran deal caused heated debate inside Iran about the Trump’s plan for the JCPOA and the best Iranian reaction to US disavowing the nuclear deal. Mojtaba Mousavi tried to discuss the issue with Barbara Slavin, an American expert on Iran and a President Trump critic who believes that the new US president is not a rational player. 

Barbara Slavin is an American journalist and foreign policy expert. She is a Washington correspondent for Al Monitor and acting director of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council’s South Asia Center. She is the author of a book about Iran–United States relations.

This interview originally appeared in the October 16, 2017 edition of Iranian Jamejam daily.

 

 

Q: How can Trump prevent the possible tension in US-EU relations while he increases pressure on Iran by introducing new sanctions and threatening to put an end to the nuclear deal?

Slavin: Trump cannot prevent tension in US-EU relations; on the contrary, his “decertification” of the Iran deal and threats to “terminate” the agreement if Congress does not act to address its flaws will increase US-EU tensions to a degree not seen since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Q: You talked about a possible dire US-EU tension. How can such tension influence the Middle East security and the West role in the region?

Slavin: Europeans will be less likely to work with the US on solutions to regional conflicts. This is a big opportunity for Iran to split Europe from the United States.
Q: Would you please elaborate more about the possible tension in US-EU relationship? Which aspects of the EU-US relationship are more vulnerable? Is that possible that such tension evolves into sort of a cold war between the two?

Slavin: I don’t see a ‘Cold War’ between the US and Europe; there are too many long-standing security, economic and people-to-people ties. I think Europeans will do their best to survive Trump and await more traditional and sensible US leadership after he’s gone.

 

Q: What would be the perfect role Iran can play in the above mentioned scenario?

Slavin: Iran, as I suggested, should avoid Trump’s trap and stay within the JCPOA. It should also work hard on internal reforms and make itself more attractive to foreign — and Iranian — investors by cleaning up corruption and getting rid of burdensome regulations. It should also stop jailing dual nationals on bogus charges as this chills the climate for investment and tourism. Forty years after the revolution, it is time for Iran to stop taking hostages.

 

Q: How likely is that the Congress would meet Trump’s expectations? How can the Congress (Maybe with the help of other JCPOA parties) address what Trump sees as the deal’s flaws?

Slavin: This is very hard to predict. Congress has struggled to deal with other issues, including health care, and any change in the current law on the Iran deal would require 60 votes in the Senate. Ultimately, this is Trump’s responsibility and he cannot foist it on Congress.
Q: Do you agree that Trump will not push the certain European states (France, Britain and Germany) to end their economic relations with Iran to keep them satisfied while the US is trying to force Iran to budge on non-nuclear issues?

Slavin: Europe is justly proud of its role in initiating negotiations with Iran on the nuclear issue – at a time when President Bush would not talk directly with Iran without preconditions. European businesses have just begun to return to Iran and they do not want to jeopardize those contracts.

This will be a real test of the willingness of the international community to stand up to Trump’s intimidation and of the independence of Western businesses. I hope that Iran continues to abide by the agreement and that Europe – and US allies in Asia – also continue to implement the JCPOA.

 

Q: Part of Iranian establishment believes that JCPOA would be meaningless for Iran if US withdraws or refuse to abide by the agreement. They believe that EU will choose to stand by the US if Trump raise the cost of working with Iran (through financial and banking instruments). A few minutes ago Mr. Zarif told the Iran state TV that “If they revive the sanctions, we will decide whether to continue staying in the JCPOA or terminating it.”
Do you think, the Europeans can economically endure the Trump’s pressure if US withdraws the deal and introduce through penalties for those who do business with Iran?

Slavin: This is the key question – what European businesses do, not what European leaders say. However, I believe that there is so much anger toward Trump in Europe that there is a good chance that European businesses will remain in the Iran market and that they will be defended by their political leadership. There is also no certainty that Congress – or Trump – will re-impose secondary sanctions, no matter what Trump said on Friday.

 

Q: I see a quote from President Trump in which he says he has talked with Theresa May and Emmanuel Macron about Iran. “Don’t do anything. Don’t worry about it. Take all the money you can get. They’re all friends of mine,” he has said.
Does that mean sort of coordination between Trump and Macron on Iran deal? Many were hopeful that Macron can play a role in containing Trump. Do you see any ground for Macron and Trump to compromise on a modified version of the JCPOA so all parties including Trump’s US can stay in the deal?

Slavin: As for the influence of May and Macron, I would not count on it. Trump loves it when foreign leaders beg him not to do various things and then he goes ahead and does them anyway. He is a cruel person and the most incompetent American president I have seen in my lifetime.

 

Q: JCPOA is a very important deal and has implications for the international security. From the other point of view, we are witnessing Saudi’s intensified efforts to develop a nuclear program which, given to the Saudi’s aggressive behavior, can increase the regional instability.
How can this deal, if preserved, shape the future power structure of the region and the world? Do you see it necessary for the US to limit Saudi’s ambitious nuclear program?

Slavin: I am not well informed about Saudi Arabia’s nuclear intentions. Frankly, given all the challenges the Saudis face these days, I would not be too concerned about this.
Q: In a piece for National Interest, Joseph Nye wrote that the real challenge that the US is facing could be called “the rise of the rest”. Some authors such as Fareed Zakaria in his “Post-Americanism World” are pointing to the same challenge. In view of such analysis, do you think the US can overcome those challenges stemming from its power and hegemony? Or is it the Trump’s US has no clear awareness of such challenge?

Slavin: Long before Trump, other countries such as China were increasing their economic and geostrategic power. Trump has accelerated this process with his defiance of international treaties and other agreements such as the Paris accords, the Trans Pacific Partnership and now the JCPOA. He is not making America “great again.” He is diminishing our international role and it will take a lot of work by his successors to restore American leadership.

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