Saturday, 01 February, 2020

Negotiation Strategy: A Legitimate Mechanism to Boost International Cooperation

Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini
Media Advisor to Iranian Foreign Minister

The issue of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s nuclear energy program and allegations raised about that program by a number of international players, are among hot topics which have drawn a lot of attention, not only from political analysts and the elite, but also from the world’s public opinion.

Undoubtedly, the Islamic Republic of Iran’s effort to achieve peaceful nuclear enrichment technology is an example of the right to development which has been recognized for all countries. This issue has not only been emphasized by the Charter of the United Nations as well as the universal resolutions adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations, but has been also recognized as an example of “human right” for all nations.

Even in its Preamble, the Charter of the United Nations has mentioned one of the main goals behind the establishment of the world body as promoting “social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom.” Also, the UN General Assembly has adopted many resolutions, including Resolution 2625 (adopted on October 24, 2021) on “Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Cooperation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations,” in which the General Assembly says, “States should cooperate in the economic, social and cultural fields as well as in the field of science and technology and for the promotion of international cultural and educational progress.

In addition, in all basic documents on human rights– including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – the right to development has been recognized as a natural right for all nations regardless of racial, political, geographical and religious differences among them.

As a result, the right to achieve peaceful nuclear technology, has been known as an example of objective aspects of development and this is why the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) has officially recognized in its Article 4 the right of all member states to conduct peaceful nuclear activities.

The above realities clearly prove that the disputes and disagreements that have escalated during the past years over the issue of “whether Iran has the right to enrich uranium on its soil or not,” have not been simply legal differences. On the contrary, their main roots should be sought in political issues and somewhere outside the domain of concepts and rules of contemporary international law and the rules of human rights.

This issue becomes more prominent alongside another undeniable reality. The reality is that the Islamic Republic of Iran, based on its powerful logic of self-sufficiency and negation of dependence on other countries, and also in the light of the teachings of the Founder of the Islamic Revolution (Imam Khomeini) and under the leadership of the Supreme Leader (Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei) has been trying to achieve its legitimate and internationally recognized rights. In doing so, it has put the main emphasis on its own intrinsic and national capabilities and has, as such, been able to indigenize the highest levels of the latest technologies in the world with regard to the nuclear energy. Also, in its effort to accomplish this, Iran has not made realization of its inalienable rights conditional on the consent and agreement of other countries and has never given in to excessive demands of those countries.

What is currently on the agenda of Iran’s diplomatic apparatus is to accurately delineate the legal and logical grounds based on which the Islamic Republic of Iran believes that it has the right to avail itself of nuclear technology and also why the country strongly insists on that right.

In other words, it is true that according to the aforesaid principles and based on the country’s self-sufficiency strategy, the Islamic Republic’s right to achieve nuclear technology is nonnegotiable and needless of the agreement of other countries. However, since some disputes initiated by certain countries with regard to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s right to enrich uranium do not have their roots in legal matters, therefore, enlightenment and informing the international political community of Iran’s true intents has been the main goal of the nuclear diplomacy of our country. This is also a good step to fight and defuse widespread efforts made to depict Iran as a dangerous country which is source of international concerns and evades the international law. This issue was stressed by the Supreme Leader in his speech on April 9, 2014, when he said, “The goal of the Arrogance front is to maintain the international atmosphere against Iran on the pretext of Iran’s nuclear issue. This was why an agreement was made with the new [Iranian] administration’s plan to continue negotiations over the nuclear issue in order to do away with this international atmosphere and deprive the opposite side of its initiative while revealing the truth to the public opinion of the world.”

By following the “negotiation strategy” Iran does not seek to negotiate with anybody over the natural and national rights of the country. The goal, however, is to remind other states of their rights and obligations for promoting international cooperation to achieve sustainable development for the entire world. Another goal is to show the logical and law-abiding image of our country to the public opinion and political observers at international level.

This strategy seeks to shed light on the legal fundaments of peaceful nuclear activities of our country in order to challenge the biased measures taken by the United Nations Security Council and even more regretfully, unilateral measures taken by some countries for imposing economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic. As a result, the main goal of Iran’s strategy is to do away with these sanctions, which in fact, violate the obligations of international community for promoting cooperation in this field.

The negotiation strategy is an effective and even necessary measure in the course of building trust with international community and finally restoring the national rights of our country. This is true because the main goal of this strategy, as said before, is to shed more light on the illegal nature of sanctions imposed on Iran, on the one hand. On the other hand, it seeks to prove the false nature of many of the so-called concerns that are posited in this regard and, of course, eliminate possibly legitimate ambiguities and concerns of some countries.

Iran’s diplomatic apparatus is missioned with implementing large-scale policies of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s government. Therefore, by working within the guidelines put forth by the Supreme Leader and with complete knowledge of Iran’s nonnegotiable red lines and the policies of the 11th administration, it is trying to promote its legal and legitimate demands on the basis of a powerful and firm logic. In doing so, it also relies on the axial principles of dignity, wisdom and expediency to foil the ominous plots of ill-wishers of Iran in all political, security and economic fields.

Therefore, the sixth round of nuclear negotiations in the Austrian capital city of Vienna, should be considered a valuable achievement for our country. During this round of talks, Iran’s nuclear negotiating team engaged in breathtaking and intense talks in order to prove two points. Firstly, Iran possesses real and necessary political will to achieve a logical, essential, just and comprehensive agreement for the final resolution of disputes over its nuclear energy program. Secondly, Iran does not intend to achieve that solution at any price and in case all the basic goals that it pursues through negotiations are not met, the Islamic Republic will not insist on putting an end to differences at any price.

The final conclusion derived from all the above necessities and predetermined goals of Iran’s ongoing diplomatic efforts has been summarized in the remarks made by the Supreme Leader in an address on February 17, 2014. He said, “The work initiated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and state officials about nuclear negotiations will continue; Iran will never violate what it has promised and vowed [to do].”


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