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Iran’s Growing Isolation Crisis

Iran’s regime under back-breaking international pressure

Despite the regime’s ongoing conflict with the United States and Europe over the 2015 nuclear deal, known in short as the JCPOA, and the ongoing economic sanctions and arms embargo, several other important events have added to the regime’s international and regional pressures and weakness.

Human rights and regime’s isolation

On June 22, the United Nations issued a resolution extending the mandate of Javaid Rehman, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in Iran. The resolution was adopted by a majority of votes, including the Netherlands, which replaced Sweden in the group, and the representative of the country,(???) while listing numerous cases of human rights violations, including the crackdown against the November 2019 protests and the execution of juveniles, while warning of the dire human rights situation in Iran.

The majority of UN envoys, even Brazil which has many economic agreements with the regime, voted in favor of the resolution, urging Tehran to agree with the visit by Javaid Rehman to Iran, and an independent investigation and report on the human rights situation in Iran.

Complaint against Iran at the International Court of Justice

In addition to what has been said, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s threat to sue Iran in the International Court of Justice over delays in handing over the black boxes of a downed Ukrainian airliner was another unique event that signaled the regime’s decline in the international balance of power.

Iran has not only refused to deliver the black boxes, but it has also failed to fulfill its obligations to the victims’ families. If these commitments are not fulfilled, there is no choice but to go to the International Court of Justice, Zelensky said.

Pressure from the regime’s neighbors

Another example was the killing of Afghan refugees, which raised anger among the Afghan people and government against the regime. There were several demonstrations in different cities of Afghanistan in response, resorting to sharp criticism targeting Tehran, chanting harsh slogans against regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, and setting fire to his vile images. In recent years, however, the regime has invested heavily in expanding its foothold in Afghanistan.

The people of Afghanistan, however, have invalidated the regime’s actions and efforts with their demonstrations. In a meeting with the Afghan Foreign Minister, the regime’s Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani, expressed his anger at the actions of the Afghan people and government against the regime. “Iran’s law enforcement forces have played no role in these incidents. The heavy and indecent news and atmosphere created by some Afghan officials and media is surprising and unfortunate,” he said on June 21, according to the regime’s Fars news agency.

In another stage, the resumption of protests by the Lebanese people and the slogans against the alliance of Iran’s regime and Hezbollah, which is equivalent to attacking the regime self, are further examples of Tehran’s escalating regional isolation.

EU allying with US against Tehran

The most painful blow to the mullahs is the Europeans receding from the regime. Over the years the Green Continent has been a maneuvering lever in the JCPOA talks and confronting the United States. The recent resolution of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Board of Governors, presented by Germany, the United Kingdom, and France, which went on to be approved by the Board, added to the regime’s anger. Additionally, in close proximity to U.S. policy, the EU3 foreign ministers issued a statement in Berlin expressing their support for an extension to a UN arms embargo imposed on Iran until 2023.

Iran’s state-run daily Vatan Emrooz, in a piece published on June 21, clearly portrays the regime’s anger. “The European Troika, meanwhile, has raised ‘concerns about regional security and stability’ as a reason for its decision to continue Iran’s arms embargo until 2023, while regional issues have no place in the text of the JCPOA agreement.”

The Vatan Emrooz piece, recalling that “the regional policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran has not been secret since the beginning of the victory of the Islamic Revolution, and European countries, knowing Iran’s orientations in the region, sat at the negotiating table with Iran and accepted the JCPOA agreement” while accusing Europe of “making excuses,” added:

“The Europeans’ decision to extend Iran’s arms embargo until 2023 should be analyzed in line with their alignment with the United States in the scenario of extending Iran’s arms embargo,” the piece concluded.

Disloyalty of Iran’s traditional supporters

Remarks made by Heshmatullah Falahatpisheh, a former member of Iran’s parliament, regarding the resolution of the IAEA Board of Governors against the regime, display another dimension of the regime’s isolation. “The United States and the Zionist regime are seeking to place Iran’s nuclear program under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter,” he said in a recent interview with the semi-official ISNA news agency.

He went on to further express concerns that in such circumstances Iran will lose the support of China and Russia. “If the case goes to the Security Council, Iran will no longer be able to take sharp measures because Iran’s harsh approach will prevent Russia and China from vetoing new resolutions against Iran in the Security Council, suggesting that Iran’s nuclear activities may be of military nature.”

“The intellectual atmosphere of China and Russia is a hegemonic one, and their intellectual space is different from ours. They are doing everything in their power to define a place for themselves in international hegemony, and they will support Iran as long as there is no damage to their global stature,” Falahatpisheh added with regret.


This series of international dilemmas will further isolate Iran’s regime, and ultimately placing a heavy burden on Khamenei’s forces on the one hand, and on Iran’s social crisis, encouraging the people on the other. The truth is that significant concerns are escalating among the regime’s leaders.


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