Iran Policy

September 27, 2021
On September 24, new Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian met with Western reporters during the opening week of the U.N. General Assembly. In one session, only his opening remarks were on the record. In another interview with MSNBC, he provided more detailed comments on Tehran’s…
August 5, 2021
On August 5, former judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi took the oath of office as Iran’s eighth president in a ceremony before parliament, senior officials and foreign dignitaries. Raisi’s election, in June, reflects the growing hold by hardliners over all branches of government.  On foreign policy,…
August 3, 2021
On August 3, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei formally endorsed Ebrahim Raisi as president, the first step in the transition of power. He called on Raisi to “empower the middle and lower classes of society that are shouldering the burden of economic problems.” Khamenei gave Raisi a mandate to…
August 2, 2021
Outgoing President Hassan Rouhani apologized to Iranians for their suffering during his eight years in office. “If we had any shortcoming and flaws, we ask people’s forgiveness and mercy,” he said during his last cabinet meeting on August 1. Rouhani said that his administration would have been more…
July 28, 2021
On July 28, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei accused the United States of being “obstinate” and “cowardly” in talks on restoring full compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal. “On paper and in words, they promise to remove the sanctions, but they have not and will not remove them,” he told…
June 22, 2021
In his first press conference, President-elect Ebrahim Raisi warned that his administration would take a harder stand on diplomacy with the international community. “The world, particularly the West, should realize that the situation in Iran has changed through the people’s vote,” Raisi told…
June 16, 2021
In a nationally televised address on June 16, two days before a pivotal presidential election, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that the next government needed a broad public mandate to tackle the myriad political, economic and social problems facing Iran. “If the new president is elected…
June 8, 2021
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif On June 2, U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres reported that Iran will lose its voting rights in the General Assembly after failing to pay its dues. Iran can continue to vote in the current session, which ends in September. But the Islamic Republic would…
May 26, 2021
Iran’s presidential election triggered backlash from across the political spectrum after the Guardian Council approved only seven men out of 592 candidates to run for president. Highly anticipated candidates were barred from running. They included Ali Larijani, speaker of parliament from 2008 to…
April 13, 2021
On April 12, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif vowed that Iran would ramp up its nuclear program in response to the sabotage of the Natanz nuclear facility. A day earlier, an explosion destroyed the power supply and damaged underground centrifuges used to enrich uranium at Natanz. “This most…