On February 7, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei denounced President Donald Trump in an address to air force commanders. He thanked Trump for revealing the “true face” of the United States. “What we have been saying, for over thirty years, about political, economic, moral, and social corruption within the U.S. ruling establishment, he came out and exposed during the election campaigns and after the elections,” said Khamenei.
In Freedom House’s annual report, Iran received a score of 17 out of 100, with 100 being the most free. It also received poor marks for political rights and civil liberties. “Freedom in the World 2017” is the organization’s flagship report, which assesses the condition of political rights and civil liberties around the world. It is composed of numerical ratings and supporting descriptive texts for 195 countries and 15 territories. The following is Iran’s profile from the report.
Both Republican and Democratic lawmakers have condemned Iran’s January 29 ballistic missile test. Many also criticized Tehran for destabilizing the region through its sponsorship for terrorist organizations and militias. The following are recent remarks by members of Congress on Iran.
Bipartisan Letter to President Trump
Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD), Bob Corker (R-TN) and 20 colleagues
Dear Mr. President:
The Iran Project, a non-governmental organization, dedicated to a balanced, objective, and bipartisan approach to preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, released a short briefing paper on Iran’s missile testing. Tehran most recently tested a medium-range ballistic missile on January 29. The following is an excerpt from the paper.
On January 25, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sabah Khaled al Sabah made a rare one-day visit to Tehran and called for a frank dialogue between Iran and its Arab neighbors. He delivered a message to President Hassan Rouhani from his country’s emir, Sabah al Ahmad al Jaber al Sabah, the details of which have not been publicized. The minister said that Iran and Kuwait should find common ground on combating terrorism and boost bilateral ties for the sake of regional security.
President Hassan Rouhani will be up for reelection in May 2017. His popularity peaked in August 2015 with an 89 percent favorability rating just after the nuclear deal was brokered between Iran and the world’s six major powers. As of December 2016, however, only 68 percent of Iranians viewed him favorably, according to a new poll by the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland (CISSM) and IranPoll.com.
Some 71 percent of Iranians believe that President Donald Trump is likely to decide not to abide by the terms of the nuclear deal, according to a new poll by the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland (CISSM) and IranPoll.com. Some 59 percent of Iranians think Tehran should reject renegotiating the agreement if Trump demands to increase the duration of the deal. Enthusiasm for the deal in general, however, has waned. In September 2015, 77 percent of Iranians approved of the deal, compared with 55 percent in December 2016.
On January 18, Governor Nikki Haley (R-SC) testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on her nomination to be ambassador to the United Nations in the Trump administration. She called the U.N. Security Council endorsement of the nuclear deal with Iran a “huge disappointment” and said the new administration would need “to do a lot of things to fix what’s happened.” But Haley did not advocate for pulling out of the agreement. The following are excerpts from the hearing related to Iran.
The International Crisis Group released a report on the one-year anniversary of the nuclear deal’s implementation. It highlights uncertainly around the agreement’s continued implementation. It notes that the new U.S. administration, should it seek to renegotiate aspects of the nuclear deal, would have “more credibility in offering incentives to Iran than President Barack Obama ever did” because President Trump will likely be backed by the Republican-controlled Congress. The following is the executive summary of the report with a link to the full text.