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Nuclear program deal to propel Iran into position of Muslim world leader

October 20, 2015, 17:56 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara
© AP Photo/Ronald Zak

MOSCOW, October 20. /TASS/. The agreement on Iran’s nuclear program, effective since last Sunday, will contribute a great deal to the restoration of Tehran’s status of an equitable participant in international relations and an attractive trading and economic partner, as well as propel it into the position of the Muslim world’s leader, polled pundits have told TASS.

Under the July 14, 2015 Vienna agreement, concluded between Tehran and the sextet of international negotiators (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany), Tehran agreed to restrict its nuclear activity in most fields for eight to ten years. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov has said "there are reasons to point out that in many respects the agreement is based on proposals made by Moscow." Vienna last Monday hosted the first session of the joint commission of the sextet and Iran on progress in implementing the agreement.

The director of the Military and Political Studies Centre at the Moscow state institute of international relations MGIMO, Aleksey Podberyozkin, believes that the lifting of sanctions from Tehran by the United States, the European Union and the UN Security Council, due to follow the agreement’s enactment, will propel Iran into the position of the leader of the Middle East and the Islamic civilization in general.

Iran - the Muslim world’s fourth largest economy - is also one of the most technologically advanced states in the region and boasts major oil and natural gas reserves. "It is nakedly clear that in the near future the rivalry among Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia for leadership in the Middle East and the Muslim world will go into high gear," Podberyozkin told TASS.

"Already now Tehran is a key participant in the coalition fighting against the Islamic State, also including Syria, Russia and Iraq. Tehran has dispatched to Syria its crack force - the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. Syrians are saying outright that without support from Iran Bashar Assad’s army would have been unable to withstand the confrontation with the IS militants long enough," Podberyozkin said.

As for the risk world oil prices may slump when the oil embargo from Iran is lifted such a possibility does exist, he believes. "A drop in the price of one barrel of crude by a tiny two dollars would spell a $3-billion loss for Russia’s federal budget. But that will not be a disaster yet. Even if the barrel slumps to $45, Russia will still be able to develop its industries and shrug off dependence on the oil revenue," Podberyozkin believes.

Tehran’s growing role in the struggle with terrorism and the restoration Iran’s status of an equitable partner in international relations explains why Washington is paying so much attention to relations with it these days. Given Iran’s economic and financial potential, it should not be ruled out that the United States may try to position itself as Tehran’s best friend, pushing Russia to the sidelines. In the meantime, the potential of cooperation between Moscow and Tehran in the nuclear and military-technical sphere is vast, indeed, and it should be built up further on," Podberyozkin said.

The president of the Middle East Institute, Yevgeny Satanovsky, has told TASS the United States’ sanctions against Iran have reached nowhere.

"The sanctions have not changed the political system or regime in Iran. So the US has had to put on a brave face and approve of the agreement on Iran’s nuclear program," Satanovsky said. "For the rest of the world that means that Iran has emerged out of the state of cold war with the United States. Now Tehran will see a long line of investors - Italian, Austria, German and British - eager to do business with it. All will be fighting tooth and claw for a chance to sell their newest technologies to Iran. Besides, the billions of Iran’s dollars frozen in foreign banks will become available to Iran again. In other words, Iran will gain the status of a very lucrative partner for other countries, including Russia," Satanovsky said.

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