A little over a year after Donald Trump’s ascent to the presidency of the United States of America, relations between Washington and Tehran have reverted to the tense, mistrustful and antagonistic patterns of the past.
- Recent spontaneous demonstrations in Iran have startled most observers around the world. A social unrest which started because of worsening economic circumstances and the failure of the government to keep its economic promises and contain inflation and price rises and issues of that nature has now turned into a general political dissent around the country.
- The image of Ebrahim Yazdi, who passed away at 86 years of age on the 27th of August
- The recent presidential election and the second landslide victory of Hassan Rouhani is more than ever a true exemplification of such a complexity, which is often missed by foreign analysts of Iran.
- In spite of everything, the popular vote matters in Iran. Acknowledging this is inevitable when faced with the outcome of Friday’s elections.
- The abstention risk in the Iranian presidential elections was only a spectre and on Friday May 19th voters went to vote en masse
- The crowd is chanting slogans to the rhythm of pop songs, young people wearing purple and green bandanas are waving placards while famous artists take turns at the microphone appealing for votes.
- Unlike what many may think, elections in an illiberal country like Iran are not only a political show. Their outcome serves as a test of strength among Iran’s competing power centers. Over the weekend, the Iranian people went massively to the polls to elect members of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, the parliament, and the 88 members of the Assembly of Experts, which is in charge of selecting the next supreme leader to replace Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. This was the first time that the two political bodies were elected simultaneously.
- In Iran the time has come to call voters to the polls. “Even an influential minority will make the difference in the next parliament,” said reformist candidate Mohammad-Reza Aref only a few days ago addressing a crowded assembly of young supporters of the National Determination Party (as reported by the Financial Times’ correspondent). Similar appeals have been made by President Hassan Rouhani.
- Tehran – One front page headline reads “Delegation of U.S. oil companies to visit Tehran.” Others instead announced that “Trade delegations follow one another.” There have even been headlines stating “Crowds of foreign investors prepare to invade Iran,” with English-language Iranian newspapers not holding back in their use of superlatives and one column saying that Iran is the “last frontier” for international investors. Expectations are high, extremely high.