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Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran

Crisis Group Role

Ali Vaez is Crisis Group's Iran Project Director. Consulting closely with all sides in the nuclear negotiations for the past few years as our former Iran Senior Analyst, he led Crisis Group’s efforts in helping to bridge the gaps between Iran and the P5+1 and is renowned as one of the foremost experts on Iran’s nuclear and missile programs.

Professional Background

Before joining Crisis Group, he headed the Iran project at the Federation of American Scientists in Washington, DC. Trained as a scientist, Vaez has more than a decade of experience in journalism. He has written widely on Iranian affairs and is a regular contributor to mainstream media outlets. He was a post-doctoral fellow at Harvard University from 2008 to 2010 and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Geneva and a master's degree from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Languages

  • Persian
  • French
  • English

In The News

16 Mar 2018
One doesn’t ascend to the pinnacle of power from the position of a virtual underdog in Iran’s politics without having Machiavellian skills. No one could pose a serious challenge to [Ayatollah Khamenei]. Bloomberg

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran
16 Mar 2018
The Trump administration’s move to the right with [former Secretary of State] Tillerson’s departure, [replaced by former CIA director Mike] Pompeo, signals further hardening of Washington’s stance. Bloomberg

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran
2 Mar 2018
After the nuclear deal, in 2015, Putin worried about rapprochement between Iran and the U.S. A lot has changed. Russia is now Iran’s most important and powerful ally. The New Yorker

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran
28 Feb 2018
The only thing that would satisfy the [U.S.] administration is for the Europeans to jointly commit to violate the [2015 nuclear] deal by agreeing to sanctions on Iran. Al-Monitor

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran
26 Jan 2018
I think [Tehran] understands the [U.S. President Trump] administration’s policy at this stage is to put the spotlight on Iranians and portray them as the source of all evil in the region. The Wall Street Journal

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran
12 Jan 2018
President Trump’s decision [to renew Iran's nuclear deal] leaves the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in the state of limbo it acquired shortly after his election. Newsweek

Ali Vaez

Project Director, Iran

Latest Updates

Iran’s Protests: Time to Reform

Without addressing head-on the drivers of the protests and pursuing popular reform, the Iranian leaders are only buying time until the next standoff between the state and the society.

Originally published in Open Democracy

How Iran’s President Rouhani Can Turn Crisis into Opportunity

Daily street protests across Iran since 28 December 2017 have pitted many young Iranians against the government, but the state’s response is revealing deep fractures in the political establishment. To outflank both the unrest and his political opponents, President Rouhani’s best option is to address head-on the drivers of the protests and pursue popular reform.

A Huthi Missile, a Saudi Purge and a Lebanese Resignation Shake the Middle East

Volatility is rising across the Middle East as local, regional and international conflicts increasingly intertwine and amplify each other. Four Crisis Group analysts give a 360-degree view of the new risks of overlapping conflicts that involve Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Lebanon and Israel.