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US Sanctions Five Iranian Entities

January 4, 2018
On January 4, the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned five Iran-based entities for ties to the country's ballistic missile program. The United States said the organizations were owned or controlled by an industrial firm responsible for developing and…

Iranian Leaders React to Protests

January 4, 2018
Updated: January 18, 2018
On December 28, 2017, protests erupted in Mashhad, Iran’s second largest city, over high prices and corruption. Anti-government demonstrations quickly spread to dozens of cities. They were the largest show of opposition since 2009. Some of the rallies turned violent. More than 20 people reportedly…

Iran Letter to UN Protests “Grotesque” US Comments

January 4, 2018
On January 3, Iran charged the United States with "grotesque" interference in its internal affairs in a letter to the United Nations. The accusations came after the United States openly supported anti-government demonstrations in major cities, including Tehran, Masshad, Qom, and Hamadan. "Such…

Timeline: Iran Protests

January 2, 2018
Updated: January 11, 2018
On December 28, 2017, protests broke out in Mashhad, Iran’s second largest city, over economic hardships, corruption, and rising food and fuel prices. The initial protests were reportedly sparked by increases of up to 40 percent in staples, including eggs and poultry. Out of a population of 80…

U.S. Response to Iran Protests

January 2, 2018
Updated: January 10, 2018
On December 28, 2017, protests broke out in Mashhad, Iran’s second most populous city, over economic hardships, corruption, and rising food and fuel prices. The demonstrations continued into the new year, morphing into political rallies and spreading within the first week to dozens of cities across…

Business Boom or Bust? Two Years After Nuclear Deal

December 21, 2017
Since the 2015 nuclear agreement, Iran has signed deals worth tens of billions of dollars—on oil, aviation, solar energy, health care, and consumer goods—with companies on four continents, including North America and Europe. Foreign companies have coveted the Iranian market since sanctions were…

Iran in 2017

December 21, 2017
2017 was tumultuous for many Middle East countries, but less for Iran than in previous years. Tehran encountered few existential political or security challenges, whereas Iraq, Syria, Yemen, and Libya faced basic questions about their long-term viability. Iran capitalized on the region’s chaos to…

Trump and Iran in 2017

December 21, 2017
Donald Trump’s election produced dramatic change in U.S. policy in 2017. As a candidate, he had blasted the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and six world powers as “the worst deal ever negotiated.” If elected, Trump said his number-one priority would be to dismantle the deal. Since taking…

Report: Implications of Iran’s Changing Demographics

December 18, 2017
The Carnegie Endowment has published a new study on Iran’s shifting demographics by Richard Cincotta, a global fellow with the Wilson Center’s Environmental Change and Security Program, and Karim Sadjadpour, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace focusing on Iran and U.S…

Trump National Security Strategy on Iran

December 18, 2017
Updated: December 19, 2017
On December 18, President Trump unveiled his long-awaited National Security Strategy. “For generations the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has been understood as the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region. Today, the threats from jihadist terrorist organizations…

Haley Presents Evidence of Iran-Houthi Ties

December 14, 2017
Updated: January 30, 2018
On December 14, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, presented what she referred to as "undeniable" evidence of Iran’s transfer of arms to Houthi rebels in Yemen. “It’s hard to find a conflict or a terrorist group in the Middle East that does not have Iran’s fingerprints all over…

Zarif Urges Europe to Work with Iran

December 11, 2017
On December 10, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif urged Europe to work with Iran and not follow in “lock step” behind the United States. In an op-ed published in The New York Times, he argued that the United States has proven unreliable on foreign policy since President Donald Trump…

Trump Jerusalem Announcement: Tehran Reacts

December 7, 2017
Updated: December 13, 2017
On December 6, U.S. President Donald Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and committed to moving the U.S. Embassy to the holy city from Tel Aviv. "My announcement today marks the beginning of a new approach to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians," President…

Tillerson and Mogherini on Nuclear Deal

December 7, 2017
On December 5, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with E.U. foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to exchange views on recent developments in the Middle East and the Balkans. In remarks to the press, Mogherini reiterated that “continued implementation of the Iran nuclear deal is a key strategic…

Poll: American Attitudes Toward Iran

December 5, 2017
Americans are divided on their opinion of the Iran nuclear deal and President Donald Trump’s decision to not certify Tehran’s compliance, according to a new survey conducted by Shibley Telhami and Stella Rouse at the University of Maryland. The following are key results from the poll carried out…

Pompeo Writes Iran’s Revolutionary Guards

December 4, 2017
On December 2, Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo said that he sent a letter to the commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Qods Force, Major General Qassem Soleimani, warning that Iran would be held responsible for attacks on U.S. interests in Iraq. Soleimani, once a shadowy figure…

Mike Pompeo on Iran

November 30, 2017
Mike Pompeo has been outspoken on Iran both as a Republican congressman from Kansas (2011-2017) and as director of the Central Intelligence Agency. The following is a collection of key remarks on Iran.   Today marks one year since Secretary of State John Kerry and Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad…

Russia, Iran and Turkey Hold Syria Summit

November 22, 2017
In November, regional and world powers renewed efforts to end the six-year conflict in Syria and discussed ways to combat ISIS and other terrorist organizations. A flurry of meetings and phone calls came just days after ISIS lost its last stronghold in Syria, Abu Kamal. The following is a rundown…

US Sanctions Iranian Counterfeiting Ring

November 21, 2017
On November 20, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned a wide network of individuals of entities that were helping Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Qods Force “counterfeit currency to support its destabilizing activities.” The U.S. government has accused the Qods Force of meddling in the…

Iran Declares End of ISIS

November 21, 2017
Updated: November 22, 2017
On November 21, President Hassan Rouhani declared the end of the so-called Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL. “Today with God’s guidance and the resistance of people in the region we can say that this evil has either been lifted from the head of the people or has been reduced,” he said in a…

IAEA Director General on Iran Nuclear Deal

November 14, 2017
On November 14, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Yukiya Amano said that Iran is abiding by the nuclear deal’s restrictions and that his agency’s verification measures are strong. “IAEA inspectors now spend around 3,000 days in the field in Iran each year, twice as…

Lebanese Prime Minister Resigns, Blames Iran

November 8, 2017
Updated: November 22, 2017
On November 4, Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned, blaming Iran and its Lebanese proxy Hezbollah for destabilizing the region. The Arab world would "cut off the hands that wickedly extend to it [Iran]," he warned. Hariri, leader of the Future Movement Party, is the leader of Lebanon’s…

Saudi Arabia Blames Iran for Attacks from Yemen

November 7, 2017
Updated: December 19, 2017
On November 4, Yemen’s Houthi rebels fired a ballistic missile at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh. Saudi forces said they intercepted the missile but the Houthis hailed the launch as a success. A Houthi spokesman told Al Jazeera that the Burkan 2-H, a type of Scud missile, traveled more…

Khamenei: US is Iran’s Main Enemy

November 3, 2017
On November 1, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that the United States is Iran’s top enemy and that “resistance” is the only way to counter it. Citing President Donald Trump’s recent characterization of the Islamic Republic as a “terrorist nation like few others,” Khamenei argued that…

Trump Asked for Rouhani Meeting

November 3, 2017
President Donald Trump reportedly asked French President Emmanuel Macron to broker a conversation with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, according to several administration and foreign officials who spoke with The Washington Post. The three leaders were all in New York City in September for the U.N…

Putin Visits Tehran

November 3, 2017
On November 1, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Iran for the first time since 2015. In a meeting with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Putin voiced support for the nuclear deal and said that Russia objects to “any uniliteral change” to it. “We oppose linking Iran’s nuclear program…

Iran and North Korea: Marriage of Convenience

November 2, 2017
The Trump administration has cited North Korea’s attainment of nuclear weapons and increasingly advanced missiles as a key reason for reexamining the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. “What we're saying now with Iran is don't let it become the next North Korea,” U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley said on…

Rouhani: Iran Will Keep Producing Missiles

October 31, 2017
On October 29, President Hassan Rouhani pledged to continue producing missiles and any kind of weapon Iran needs to defend itself. In a televised address from Parliament, he emphasized that Iran’s missile program “does not contradict any international laws,” including U.N. Security Council…

Contain, Enforce, Engage: New US Policy Options

October 27, 2017
A new report published by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Center for a New American Security recommends a comprehensive U.S. strategy for dealing with Iran’s nuclear program and countering Iran’s destabilizing behavior in the region. The following is the executive summary…

Iranian Leaders on Kurdish Referendum

October 18, 2017
On September 25, the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq held a referendum on independence. Nearly 93 percent of 4.5 million voters supported turning the KRG and some disputed areas into an independent state. Iranian leaders were largely critical of the KRG’s decision to hold the vote, saying…