The International Institute for Iranian Studies (Rasanah) has issued the Iran Case File (ICF) for February and March 2023. The file provides readers in general and researchers in particular with an in-depth analysis and overview of Iran’s variant interactions and affairs. The file is divided into two main parts: Internal Affairs and External Affairs (regional and international affairs).
For February and March, Iran’s internal affairs center on five main files. The Political File sheds light on the systematic poisoning of schoolgirls across Iran, the narratives regarding the parties involved and the conflicting official positions about arresting the perpetrators. The file also sheds light on Iranian reactions to the Saudi-Iran agreement on restoring ties between the two countries. The Economic File highlights the unprecedented fluctuations in the value of the Iranian currency, the reasons behind the currency’s continued decline, particularly the internal and external factors as well as the value of the dollar exchange rate against the toman over the past 44 years — since 1979. The file also casts light on the economic repercussions on the exchange rate and the impact of the Saudi-Iran rapprochement agreement on it. The Military File spotlights the policy of mutual escalation between Iran and the United States in Syria, the placing of Iranian entities on the US blacklist and finally the military cooperation between Iran and Russia. The Ideological File discusses the hawza’s neutrality, the intimidation of Sunni scholars and the clergy’s position toward the Saudi-Iran agreement. The Social File casts light on Iranian society’s position toward the Saudi-Iran agreement, the Nowruz celebrations and the dispute over the public sphere in Iran.
With regard to Iranian external affairs, Iran’s relations and interactions with the Arab and international spheres are examined in detail. At the Arab level, the Gulf states and Iran have come under the spotlight in recent times, especially in light of China brokering a deal between Tehran and Riyadh. Additionally, developments have taken place in the context of Gulf mediation over the Iranian nuclear issue. With regard to Iraq, the file touches on the implications of the Saudi-Iran agreement on Iraq and the significations of the Iranian foreign minister’s visit to Iraq. As for Syria, the file highlights the increased Arab diplomatic overtures to Syria and the implications of the Saudi-Iran agreement on the Syrian issue. In relation to Yemen, the file spotlights the Iranian regime’s position toward the Yemeni crisis after the Saudi-Iran rapprochement agreement as well as the Yemeni government’s and the Houthi militia’s position on the deal.
Internationally, the file casts light on the mediation between the United States and Iran for swapping prisoners between the two countries and the resumption of the US maximum pressure campaign against Iran. In terms of Iran-Europe relations, the file discusses the straining of ties between the two sides due to Iran’s human rights abuses and its support for Russia in the war on Ukraine. This is in addition to the European troika’s growing differences with Iran over the latter’s nuclear program.