An Israeli Foreign Ministry official assessed that “the Iranian economy is in great distress and the coronavirus crisis is making it worse. That makes it harder for them to try to develop nuclear weapons and missiles… it could weaken their malign influence”. At the same time, a sense in Iran that “their backs are to the wall… could promote negative behaviour”, said the official, adding: “despite the humanitarian and health crisis, we do not see a sign that they have abandoned their [malign] behaviour”. “There is a danger and concern about the world being distracted”, he added. “Pressure on Iran should not be released. They have enough resources to deal with the crisis if they wanted”. Another Israeli official posited that “there is very low trust by Iranian people in their government. Maybe it’ll bring about political change… But a destabilised government might take more extreme steps to ensure its continued existence”.
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