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Iran: the Vote and the Bomb
Iran: the Vote and the Bomb

Iran: the Vote and the Bomb

This week on Hold Your Fire!, Richard Atwood and Naz Modirzadeh talk to Crisis Group expert Ali Vaez about Iran’s presidential vote this week and what it means for the country’s domestic politics, nuclear talks with the U.S. and Iran’s role in the Middle East.

As Iranians go to the polls on Friday to elect a new president, Iranian diplomats are meeting their Western counterparts in Vienna in their latest efforts to get back to the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. This week on Hold Your Fire!, Richard Atwood and Naz Modirzadeh are joined by Ali Vaez, Crisis Group’s senior adviser to the president and Iran project director, for an in-depth look at the elections, the nuclear talks and Iran’s role in the region. Ali explains that while elections in the Islamic Republic are never free or fair, this vote is likely to be even less competitive than usual, with the playing field narrowed to favour current front runner, the hardliner Ebrahim Raisi. They talk about how this could relate to Supreme Leader Ali Khameini’s succession plans. They also talk about where things stand in the talks over Iran’s nuclear program, with U.S. and other diplomats locked in a sixth round of talks with their Iranian counterparts aimed at reviving the nuclear deal. They discuss what would happen if the parties fail to reach an agreement. They also talk about the deal’s significance for regional politics and whether recent talks between Iranian and Saudi officials in the Iraqi capital Baghdad offer some hope of calming the bitter Iran-Saudi rivalry that has overshadowed the region for decades. 

Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

For more information, explore Crisis Group’s analysis on our Iran page.

Contributors

Interim President
atwoodr
Naz Modirzadeh
Board Member and Harvard Professor of International Law and Armed Conflicts
Senior Adviser to the President & Project Director, Iran
AliVaez