Iran

Spotlight on Iran (October 1, 2020 – October 18, 2020 )

Negotiations are continuing apace between Iran and Russia concerning the war in Syria: following the visit of the Iranian minister of foreign affairs to Moscow in late September, the Iranian ambassador met with the Russian deputy foreign minister and discussed developments in Syria. The bodies of eight fighters of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) who were killed in the vicinity of the town of Khan Touman southwest of Aleppo city, were identified as part of ongoing efforts of the IRGC in Syria to identify the location of dozens of Iranian fighters who have gone missing in action during the Syrian civil war. Media sources in Iraq reported that the Commander of the IRGC’s Qods Force, Esmail Qa’ani, arrived for a visit in Baghdad and met with senior commanders of the Shia militias, as part of ongoing discussions between the Iraqi government, the Shia militias and the Iranian regime.
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Bahrain as an Arena for Iran Subversion and Terrorism

Iran has been a permanent threat to the stability of the Bahraini regime since the country declared independence. Iran's fundamental antagonism is based on a combination of geopolitics, history and the Iranian regime's regional interests: Bahrain is located in the heart of the Persian Gulf, where Iran seeks hegemony; the American army's largest naval base in the Persian Gulf is in Manama, the capital of Bahrain (where the Fifth Fleet is anchored); and Bahrain's internal politics are based on a Sunni minority ruling a Shi'ite majority which mostly has an Iranian orientation.
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Spotlight on Iran (September 20, 2020 – October 1, 2020)

On September 23, Mohammad Javad Zarif, the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs, arrived for a visit in Moscow and met with his Russian colleague. The Iranian minister of energy conducted a video call with the Syrian minister of water, during which the two agreed to establish a strategic committee to facilitate the implementation the bilateral cooperation agreement in the water sector, which was signed last year by the two countries. On September 26, the Iraqi foreign minister arrived for a two-day visit in Tehran, during which he met with senior Iranian government officials. At the same time, a military delegation headed by the deputy Iranian Chief of Staff for International Affairs arrived for a visit in Baghdad.
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Spotlight on Iran (September 6, 2020 – September 20, 2020 )

The Adviser to the Speaker of the Majlis on International Affairs, Hossein Amir Abdollahian, declared that Syria continues to be a strategic matter for Iran, and that relations between the two countries are a “red line” that Iran will not allow anyone to cross. In mid-September, Iranian media outlets published the image of the Commander of the Qods Force of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), Esmail Qa’ani, during a prayer in Sayyeda Zainab south of Damascus. In mid-September, the former Iraqi Prime Minister and the Head of the State of Law Coalition, Nouri al-Maliki, arrived for a visit in Iran for medical treatment and meetings with senior Iranian officials, including the secretary general of the Supreme National Security Council, the adviser to the supreme leader on international affairs, and the speaker of the Majlis.
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Iran following the UAE-Israeli Normalization Agreement: Responses and Analysis

The agreement to normalize relations between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel, was, as expected, met with harsh criticism in Iran. Senior Iranian officials presented the agreement as a betrayal of the Palestinian cause and the Muslim world, and threatened the Emirates not to grant Israel a foothold in the Persian Gulf. Senior Iranian officials conveyed explicit threats toward the Emirates of the grave consequences of expanding Israeli activities and influence in the country to the security and stability of the Emirates, and even the lives of the Emirates’ rulers.
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Spotlight on Iran (August 23, 2020 – September 6, 2020 )

The deliberations concerning the settlement of the war in Syria have resumed as part of the ongoing Astana Process: a delegation headed by the senior adviser to the Iranian minister of foreign affairs, which visited Damascus in mid-August, met in Geneva with the Turkish deputy foreign minister, and with the special representative of the Russian president to Syria. In late August, the Iranian deputy of the minister of defense and executive director of the organization for social security of the armed forces of Iran visited Syria. The visit of the Iraqi prime minister to Washington, as part of the strategic dialogue between Iraq and the United States, aroused criticism in Tehran. The Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Khamenei, lambasted the normalization deal reached between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel, calling it “a betrayal of the Muslim world, the Arab world, the countries of the region and Palestine.”
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Iran

Exporting the Islamic Revolution was one of the Iranian Revolution’s original, basic objectives. Iran seeks regional hegemony and more than that – dominance of the Muslim world. To that end, Iran has developed a network of underground organizations and terrorist groups within Islamic (especially Shiite) communities in the Middle East and around the world, including Africa, Latin America, Asia and beyond. In the Middle East, Iran is leading an anti-American and anti-Israeli Shiite axis struggling against the Middle Eastern Sunni countries led by Saudi Arabia. The Iranian axis (the “Axis of Resistance”) includes Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen, and Bahrain. In these countries, Iran handles proxy organizations operating to promote Iran’s interests.

Israeli-Iranian relations had their ups and downs. During the reign of the Shah of Iran, the two countries were allied politically. After the revolution and the establishment of the Islamic Republic, Iran revoked its recognition of Israel and ended all official relations with it.

To implement its anti-Israeli policies, Iran has broadened its ties to the terrorist organizations operating against Israel. Iran instigates terrorist organizations, especially the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah, to attack Israel, and finances and arms both organizations. In recent years, large shipments of weapons from Iran have been intercepted as they were en route to the Palestinian terrorist organizations.


To promote its regional and global interests and aspirations, Iran is developing military nuclear capabilities. It is also developing long-range missiles and warheads which can reach Israel, the rest of the Middle East, and Europe.