“Iran, Confrontation or Cooperation?” This was the question posed at the meeting of the Atlantic Committee on Tuesday 16th of October in The Hague. Mr.Mehrdad Khonsari- political activist and former senior advisor to the former Crown Prince of Iran, Reza Pahlavi- was the main guest of the evening and gave an impressive speech.
In his speech Mr.Khonsari pressed for a “robust diplomacy” with Iran. He emphasized that a military attack would only destroy the country’s assets and uphold the current regime. Though he mentioned a military intervention on Iran to be inevitable, he pleaded the officials of the European Union to stand strong and use targeted penal actions if Iran refuses to cooperate in putting a halt to its nuclear program.
How much effect do all the diplomatic talks with Iran have? How much are their promises worth and which strategy should the EU officials use in confronting Iran with its nuclear program? Mr.Khonsari pointed out that the officials of the European Union and the United States should “engage in robust diplomacy” with the Islamic Republic of Iran, accepting no preconditions or withdrawals of earlier agreements. Iran has already refused two incentive packages in exchange for aborting its uranium enrichment. And every time, it is the Europeans who have to go back to the drawing board.
“The next time Iran acts in such a way, disrespecting international diplomacy, the EU should act firmly and freeze all assets of the Iranian regime in foreign banks and it should forbid Iranian officials from visiting their countries”, says Mr.Khonsari. According to him, these are the means that will eventually get Iran to cooperate.
But when Mr.Khonsari says “engage!” he does not mean: go and exchange rings, give a party and eat cake! He means: put a halt to Iran’s nuclear program and aim at realizing peace and political balance in the Middle East region. He has a balanced and enduring strategy in mind for achieving peace in relations between Iran and the rest of the world.
Mr.Khonsari rejects the idea of external intervention in order to achieve a regime change. “It is a business of the Iranian people, and the Iranian people alone!” Mr.Khonsari states that there is no country that would attack another country just to achieve a regime change. States have no benefit from such an action. “A states that says to use military action to achieve a regime change only to benefit its people, is lying!” If the US would use the Israel card and threaten Iran with military attack, it would only be because of the security threat of Iran as a hostile state with a bomb. A member of the Atlantic Committee said: “but I don’t think that such a regime is just a problem of its people. Freedom and human rights are universal and a humanitarian issue!” To this reaction Mr.Khonsari smiled and said that “no-one would ever reject a friendly hand!”
To the question whether there is a chance that Iran will be targeted with military force, he answers “unfortunately, yes! Knowing the culture and mindset of the current Iranian officials, it is likely that there is going to be a confrontation. But the fact that diplomats should try to prevent this from happening is evident."
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