The Iran Project

Iran news round up – December 15, 2014

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi (L) and Wendy Sherman, the top US negotiator in Iran-P5+1 nuclear talks

A selection of the latest news stories and editorials published in Iranian news outlets, compiled by AEI Critical Threats Project Iran Analyst Mehrdad Moarefian, with contributors Chris Rawlins, Marie Donovan, Warren Marshall, and Dianna Timmerman. To receive this daily newsletter, please subscribe online.

Key takeaway: The Supreme Leader’s senior foreign policy advisor reiterated Khamenei’s redline on Iran’s missile program, while highlighting the regime’s growing influence in the Middle East. Iran and the US hold bilateral talks in Geneva, ahead of Wednesday’s P5+1 negotiations.

Ali Akbar Velayati echoed the regime’s position with regards to its conventional military capabilities and said “Iran’s missiles are not negotiable,” underscoring the Supreme Leader’s intent to keep nuclear negotiations with the P5+1 compartmentalized. The Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Supreme Leader also attributed Iran’s growing regional influence in Yemen to its soft power capabilities and strategic strength, highlighting the regime’s recent public acknowledgement on its involvement there. Velayati added that Tehran does not hesitate to make strategic decisions, suggesting an implicit reference to Iraq and Syria.

Ali Akbar Salehi sought to reaffirm Tehran’s commitment to the ongoing nuclear negotiations with the P5+1, by announcing that uranium hexafluoride gas will not be injected into the new IR8 centrifuges as a sign of “goodwill.” The of Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, moreover, assured the West that approximately 9,000 of Iran’s 20,000 centrifuges are currently operational, with no immediate plans to launch the remaining centrifuges. Salehi’s statement underlines the regime’s implicit intent to gain more concessions from the West by offering temporary limitations on non-essential elements in its nuclear program.

Abbas Araghchi, International and Legal Affairs Deputy to the Foreign Minister, and Majid Takht Ravanchi, the Deputy Foreign Minister for European and American Affairs, held direct talks with US Under-Secretary Wendy Sherman in Geneva. Negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 are set to resume this Wednesday.

Official Statements

Nuclear Talks

Regional Developments and Diplomacy

Military and Security

By AEI Critical Threat


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