Iran’s Right to Peaceful Use of Nuclear Energy Should be Respected: India

first_imgAfter the United States withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, India responded a day later, on May 9, saying that the country’s right to “peaceful uses of nuclear energy” should be respected by all parties involved in the deal.“India has always maintained that Iranian nuclear issue should be resolved peacefully through dialogue and diplomacy by respecting Iran’s right to peaceful uses of nuclear energy and international community’s strong interest in exclusively peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program,” the Indian Ministry of External Affairs said, according to the Times of India.“All parties should engage constructively to address and resolve issues that have arises with respect to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA),” it said.The decision by U.S. President Donald Trump on May 8 has led to an outcry in the global diplomatic circles. French President Emmanuel Macron, UK Foreign Minister Boris Johnson and German Chancellor Angela Merkel had met Trump a day before to dissuade him from leaving the nuclear deal with Iran but were unsuccessful in changing his mind to leave a deal that he said was “defective at its core.”However, the Iranian nuclear deal is “not dead” despite Trump’s decision, France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian was quoted as saying by BBC on May 9.The deal was agreed in 2015 between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council — the United States, United Kingdom, France, China and Russia — plus Germany, under the leadership of former U.S. President Barack Obama. According to the deal, Iran would eliminate its nuclear stockpile but maintain its peaceful nuclear program, and in return, would receive relief from the nuclear-related economic sanctions imposed by the United States, European Union, and the United Nations Security Council.The other signatories have said that they will remain in the deal.India is speaking in support of Iran because of its interests in the Chabahar Port located in southeastern Iran, on the Gulf of Oman, which gives India access to Afghanistan and Eurasia, bypassing Pakistan. It serves as India’s answer to China developing the Gwadar Port in Pakistan as part of its China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.It was reported in February this year that India would invest in Iran to bypass impending U.S. sanctions, according to the Economic Times. The decision was reportedly made during Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s visit to India in February. India is already set to develop the Chabahar Port at a cost of $85 million over the course of 18 months. India has also extended a $150 million credit line to Iran through Exim Bank of India and offered to supply $400 million worth of steel towards the construction of the rail link between Chabahar and Zahedan.India has also engaged with the United States as part of a quadrilateral that also includes Australia and Japan to stop China’s aggressive growth in the Asia Pacific region.  Related ItemsDonald TrumpIranUnited Stateslast_img read more

Jamal Khashoggi: What the Arab world needs most is free expression

first_imgI was recently online looking at the 2018 “Freedom in the World” report published by Freedom House and came to a grave realization. There is only one country in the Arab world that has been classified as “free.” That nation is Tunisia. Jordan, Morocco and Kuwait come second, with a classification of “partly free.” The rest of the countries in the Arab world are classified as “not free.”As a result, Arabs living in these countries are either uninformed or misinformed. They are unable to adequately address, much less publicly discuss, matters that affect the region and their day-to-day lives. A state-run narrative dominates the public psyche, and while many do not believe it, a large majority of the population falls victim to this false narrative. Sadly, this situation is unlikely to change.The Arab world was ripe with hope during the spring of 2011. Journalists, academics and the general population were brimming with expectations of a bright and free Arab society within their respective countries. They expected to be emancipated from the hegemony of their governments and the consistent interventions and censorship of information. These expectations were quickly shattered; these societies either fell back to the old status quo or faced even harsher conditions than before.My dear friend, the prominent Saudi writer Saleh al-Shehi, wrote one of the most famous columns ever published in the Saudi press. He unfortunately is now serving an unwarranted five-year prison sentence for supposed comments contrary to the Saudi establishment. The Egyptian government’s seizure of the entire print run of a newspaper, al-Masry al Youm, did not enrage or provoke a reaction from colleagues. These actions no longer carry the consequence of a backlash from the international community. Instead, these actions may trigger condemnation quickly followed by silence.As a result, Arab governments have been given free rein to continue silencing the media at an increasing rate. There was a time when journalists believed the Internet would liberate information from the censorship and control associated with print media. But these governments, whose very existence relies on the control of information, have aggressively blocked the Internet. They have also arrested local reporters and pressured advertisers to harm the revenue of specific publications.There are a few oases that continue to embody the spirit of the Arab Spring. Qatar’s government continues to support international news coverage, in contrast to its neighbors’ efforts to uphold the control of information to support the “old Arab order.” Even in Tunisia and Kuwait, where the press is considered at least “partly free,” the media focuses on domestic issues but not issues faced by the greater Arab world. They are hesitant to provide a platform for journalists from Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Yemen. Even Lebanon, the Arab world’s crown jewel when it comes to press freedom, has fallen victim to the polarization and influence of pro-Iran Hezbollah.The Arab world is facing its own version of an Iron Curtain, imposed not by external actors but through domestic forces vying for power. During the Cold War, Radio Free Europe, which grew over the years into a critical institution, played an important role in fostering and sustaining the hope of freedom. Arabs need something similar. In 1967, the New York Times and The Washington Post took joint ownership of the International Herald Tribune newspaper, which went on to become a platform for voices from around the world.My publication, The Post, has taken the initiative to translate many of my pieces and publish them in Arabic. For that, I am grateful. Arabs need to read in their own language so they can understand and discuss the various aspects and complications of democracy in the United States and the West. If an Egyptian reads an article exposing the actual cost of a construction project in Washington, then he or she would be able to better understand the implications of similar projects in his or her community.The Arab world needs a modern version of the old transnational media so citizens can be informed about global events. More important, we need to provide a platform for Arab voices. We suffer from poverty, mismanagement and poor education. Through the creation of an independent international forum, isolated from the influence of nationalist governments spreading hate through propaganda, ordinary people in the Arab world would be able to address the structural problems their societies face.Note from Karen Attiah, Washington Post Global Opinions editor: I received this column from Jamal Khashoggi’s translator and assistant the day after Jamal was reported missing in Istanbul. The Post held off publishing it because we hoped Jamal would come back to us so that he and I could edit it together. Now I have to accept: That is not going to happen. This is the last piece of his I will edit for The Post. This column perfectly captures his commitment and passion for freedom in the Arab world. A freedom he apparently gave his life for. I will be forever grateful he chose The Post as his final journalistic home one year ago and gave us the chance to work together.© 2018 Washington Post Related Itemslast_img read more