Iran’s support for terrorist groups, proxies and militias across the region must be taken into account, including its arms provisioning and financial assistance. Its complete disregard for human rights must also be considered as well as its ballistic missile program.
However, due to the complete unpredictability of the Iranian regime, it is essential that any strategy does not include military action.
Iran’s ballistic missile program is a cornerstone of its foreign policy and is directly related to its nuclear program. Therefore, it should, without a doubt be included in the nuclear agreement so that it is restricted. Nations should call on the UN Security Council to make sure that Iran is sanctioned for any further ballistic missile testing. As it stands, any test-firing of a ballistic missile is a blatant violation of UNSC Resolution 2231 which bans the Islamic Republic from partaking in any kind of activity that is related to ballistic missiles that have the capability of delivering a nuclear weapon. It further bans Iran from any launch that uses any kind of ballistic missile element.
Since the nuclear deal was implemented, Iran has fired more than 10 ballistic missiles.
To have effective foreign policy with regards to Iran, it is absolutely essential for its human rights record to be recognised. The Iranian regime has oppressed the people of Iran in so many ways. Political prisoners are unfairly executed and tortured, and ethnic minorities are particularly targeted. Iran has one of the worst records for executions per capita and freedom of expression is non-existent.
It goes without saying that any deal with Iran should be contingent on a full halt of executions.
One way to counter the Iranian regime’s behaviour is to impose sanctions – political ones as well as economic ones. The United States sanctioned companies and individuals with links to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) which is responsible for much of Iran’s belligerence.
It is also very important for the international community to address the 1988 massacre. Around 30,000 political prisoners were executed during the course of the summer of 1988 after the Supreme Leader at that time, the founder of the Islamic Republic, ordered the execution of all political prisoners. Some of the authorities that participated in this atrocity rose through the ranks of the Iranian government and have managed to escape being held to account for their actions.
The Iranian opposition and many people in Iran have recently started to campaign for justice for the victims of the 1988 massacre since new evidence was heard last year implicating numerous figures of the Iranian regime. Since then, authorities have proceeded to destroy evidence by wrecking and building over several mass grave sites.
No progress can be made with Iran if any of these issues are ignored.