Iran seen from Beijing

Author: Kevjn Lim Source: Think tank Published: 16 June 2015

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and China's President Xi Jinping in Shanghai on May 22, 2014

China views Iran as a central element in its much-touted Silk Road Economic Belt, which aims to extend Beijing’s influence overland through Central Asia to the Persian Gulf and Europe.

Also available in Arabic. Although China has long been Iran’s largest oil customer, international sanctions recently relegated the Islamic Republic from third to sixth place among Beijing’s suppliers — a list consistently topped by Iranian rival Saudi Arabia. Similarly, while China’s bilateral trade with Iran reportedly expanded to around $50 billion by late 2014, it remains dwarfed nearly elevenfold by its trade with the United States. Continue reading


Another century, another long war

Tuesday, 21 October 2014   By: Peter Leahy

Australia is involved in the early stages of a conflict that may last for the rest of the century and potentially beyond. Terrorism is but a symptom of a broader conflict in which the fundamental threat is from radical Islamists who are intent on establishing Islam as the foundation of a new world order.

While the violence, so far, is mostly confined to Islamic lands, some of the radicals are engaged in a direct war against Western secular nations. The home-grown threat from terror remains and is likely to worsen as radicals return from fighting overseas and the internet dumps unconstrained radical propaganda across the globe. If the caliphate in Iraq and Syria established by the Islamic State survives, it will be a worrying portent of worse to come.

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Three Possible Scenarios for Iran’s Nuclear Talks

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Tayebeh Mohammadikia
PhD Candidate of International Relations in Allameh Tabatabai University, Tehra

Iran‘s nuclear negotiations have reached their sensitive stage. Now, the time is ripe to review future prospects of these negotiations more accurately and talk about the final outcome of the nuclear talks with more precision. However, the way ahead is still surrounded by ambiguity and problems. Under the present circumstances, analysts focusing on these negotiations are faced with three main assumptions: inability of the two sides to reach an agreement, achievement of a final agreement, and finally, further extension of the negotiations. Each of these possible scenarios is discussed in more detail below.

1. Achievement of a final agreement

Any analysis of conditions that may surface after “achievement of an agreement” will be a function of the arrangement of powers on the two main sides of the equation; that is, Iran and the United States, as well as the analysis of other forces that have their own influence at international, regional and global levels. Here, possible options available to powerful political forces within domestic political scene of these two countries will be explained first before turning to major influential powers in international arena.

   1.1. Arrangement of powers in Iran and the US if an agreement is not achieved

A nuclear agreement has staunch supporters and proponents both in Iran and the United States. However, the other possibility, that is, inability to reach an agreement, has also its own important and influential proponents. Continue reading

Arbil-Baghdad deal guarantees stability: Turkish energy minister

ANKARA – Anadolu Agency

Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız speaks at a press conference. AA Photo

Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız speaks at a press conference. AA Photo

An agreement reached between Baghdad and Arbil is a guarantee of stability for the country and the region, said Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız at a press conference in the northwestern Turkish province of Kocaeli.

“Stabilization in the country means stabilization for the region, so this is pleasing news,” said Yıldız.
Turkey has exported 25 million barrels of northern Iraqi oil, which corresponds to revenue of over $2 billion, Yıldız said.

“This revenue is for the people of Iraq. This situation shows that Turkey’s foresight and strategies are right to the point, and it is a contribution to the region as well,” he said. Continue reading

Iran News Round Up March 18, 2014

Nuclear power plant "Kernkraftwerk Emslan...

Nuclear power plant “Kernkraftwerk Emsland” (Photo credit: flokru)

A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by the AEI Critical Threats Project’s Iran research team. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online. 

(E) = Article in English

Excerpts of these translations may only be used with the expressed consent of the authors

Nuclear Issue

The Fragile Process for Engaging Iran


An enlargeable relief map of Syria

An enlargeable relief map of Syria (Photo credit: Wikipedia)




The diplomatic fracas over inviting and disinviting Iran to the Syrian peace talks only makes sense if you factor in President Obama’s fragile consensus for engaging Iran over its nuclear program – while influential neocons keep pressing for confrontation. That mix has made for a messy process on Syria, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

By Paul R. Pillar

The handling of the issue of Iranian participation in the next round of multilateral discussions on the civil war in Syria has been something of an embarrassment — certainly for the United States, the United Nations, and the conglomeration known as the Syrian opposition.

The United States has seemed to be more interested in words rather than in substance in the demands it has been placing on Iran.

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Iran News Round Up

An enlargeable map of the Islamic Republic of Iran

An enlargeable map of the Islamic Republic of Iran (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


June 7,2012



JUNE 7, 2012  |  Author: Ali Alfoneh      Editors: Michael Rubin and Ahmad Majidyar
* (E) – Article in English Previous editions of the Iran News Round Up are accessible at
Nuclear Issue

  • Said Jalili, Supreme National Security Council secretary and nuclear negotiator, in a letter to Catherine Ashton, EU’s foreign policy coordinator, criticizes “delay” in negotiations between the Islamic Republic and the 5+1 Group at deputy level.
  • Jalili participates at the International Saint Petersburg Security Conference.
  • Deputy Supreme National Security Council Secretary Ali Baqeri, in a letter to Helga Schmitt, Catherine Ashton’s deputy, stresses the importance of expert level meetings prior to the Moscow negotiations.
    • As a spokesman of Ashton says Catherine Ashton has answered Baqeri’s letter, Media Secretariat of the Supreme National Security Council writes that the letter not only fails to answer Baqeri’s letter, it is also “contrary to the Baghdad agreements.”
  • Ahmadinejad attending the Shanghai Pact’s Summit in Beijing meets the prime minister of China:
    • “Their opposition to the Islamic Republic’s use of peaceful nuclear energy is because of their conviction that Iran’s progress is not in their interest. They are always interested in Iran being backward and dependent on them in order to satisfy its needs… Iran is fully prepared to continue the negotiations in Moscow or even in China and has presented good proposals. However, since we, after the Baghdad negotiations and based on the agreements reached there, have on several occasions demanded continuation of the negotiations at the level of the deputies of Mrs. Ashton and the Supreme National Security Council secretary’s deputy and no result was achieved, we believe that the Westerners are making up excuses and are trying to kill time… The islamic Republic, despite the Western countries‘ lack of inclination to reach a result in the nuclear issue, is always ready to continue negotiations… My colleagues are following this issue within the framework of the law… most certainly, the policies of the government of China at the international level – to solve this issue as fast as possible – will help this issue. However, the Islamic Republic of Iran does not expect that the nuclear issue is solved at one meeting…”
  • Hossein Shariatmadari, Kayhan editor, warns that “whenever we do not consider negotiations expedient we will not hesitate stopping them.”

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