Iran at the Heart of the Middle East: The Play of Geostrategic Interests in the Region21 February 2018. From 18:30 | Workshop | English | IEMed, Barcelona
To many countries in the Middle East, Iran is a disruptive and difficult power. But Iran’s goals are no different from those of other countries: it seeks to preserve its territorial integrity and secure its borders, ensure long-term development and expand ties with other countries. Iran also wants to secure its influence, be taken seriously, minimise the risk of conflict on its borders and ensure that any foreign presence is removed from the Middle East. Today, many paint Iran’s motivations and capabilities as blindly antagonistic, ideological and expansively powerful. While Iran’s aims, interests and, particularly, methods for intervention in the region are sometimes problematic, they are hardly more abhorrent than their neighbours’.
Dina Esfandiary explains that this “expansionist” view of Iranian foreign policy is that of the West and the Arab countries of the Gulf. For Tehran, it is a matter of “projecting its power to ensure the security of the country and its borders.” She also analyzes the country’s involvement in the various crises in the region, especially in Syria and Yemen, and its interests at the global gaming table.