Analysis by PMOI/MEK
Iran, July 6, 2019 - The political and economic isolation that Iran’s regime is facing these days is increasing and both the West and the East are tightening their noose around Tehran’s throat.
While governmental officials of regime president Hassan Rouhani believe Europe’s INSTEX, a clearinghouse like financial mechanism that enables Iran to exchange oil with food and medical goods without money changing hands has isolated the U.S. and driven a wedge between Europe and the U.S. in favor of the Iranian regime, not all Iranian authorities agree.
On July 2, Mehdi Motaharnia, a political pundit close to the so-called moderate faction, had other thoughts. “The situation that is unfolding in the JCPOA relations indicate a sort of a complex play of both sides, especially the U.S. and Europe,” he said.
JCPOA is the acronym of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action or the 2015 nuclear deal reached between world powers and Iran’s regime.
“Europe’s efforts to set up INSTEX, which is a limited mechanism and follows the U.S. sanctions, is rather aimed at leading Iran to a political and diplomatic dead-end,” Motaharnia continues.
Europe’s and America’s coordinated measures are aimed at putting the Iranian regime in a “diplomatic checkmate situation,” according to Motaharnia.
“This means that if Iran accepts Europe’s INSTEX, it will eventually fail to realize its interests in terms of the JCPOA. If Iran does not accept this mechanism and makes its second step of decreasing its nuclear obligations and increasing the enrichment level operational, the initial groundwork for aligning Europe with the U.S. against Iran will form. Eventually, it can shape the international consensus that [U.S. President] Donald Trump seeks,” he continued.
On the other hand, the noose is also tightening around Tehran’s throat from the East, namely with Russia, China, and India.
Recently, Iranian official made several trips to India and grandiosely announced that they managed to circumvent the sanctions by launching the Chabahar free trade zone with India.
However, Iranian Diplomacy website, close to Rouhani’s faction, wrote on July 2: “India doesn’t participate in the Chabahar port anymore, despite it being exempt from the sanctions. The providers of equipment for the infrastructure are worried about getting involved in this project.”
“Over the past year, India has decreased its oil imports from Iran about 48 percent and has replaced it with imports from the U.S., the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia. Expectations are that this process will further continue,” Iranian Diplomacy continued.
In terms of Iran’s relations with China and Russia, Hesomedin Ashna, Rouhani’s senior adviser, argues that “confronting the bullying of the U.S., Iran, China, and Russia are closer to each other more than ever before.” However, news circulating in state-run media suggest otherwise.
Iranian media report that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has asked the regime to respect the JCPOA and has warned about breaking the limit of enriched uranium.
Meanwhile, when Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, Iran’s oil minister, traveled to Vienna to participate in an OPEC meeting, Iranian media complained that Russia’s oil policies have come in line with Saudi Arabia.
It appears that Russia has practically welcomed Iran’s energy sanctions and is selling more oil itself.
Iranian media also quoted a member of the economic committee in Iran’s Majlis (parliament) in recent days saying that China has started to fully comply with American sanctions and is refusing to ship even automobile spare parts to Iran.