The joint virtual session between the Iranian Institute for Political and International Studies(IPIS) and the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) of India about the regional and international issues was held on Monday, February 8, 2021. The session was attended by Dr.Mohammad KazemSajjadpour, Deputy Minister of MOFA & President of IPIS; Mr.Majid Ghafelebashi, Research Deputy at the Center; Saeed Ghaderi, Senior Expert at IPIS; and Hassan Ahmadian, Professor of University of Tehran; on one side; and Mr.Sunjoy Joshi, President of ORF; Rakesh Sood, Anita Sengupta, Senior Researchers at ORF, on the other side.
The session was held in the form of two panels, “Where Will Afghanistan Stand in December of 2021?”, and “The Persian Gulf and Oman Sea’s Security”, to answer the following questions. (1) Will Taliban prevail in Afghanistan Again? (2) Will Taliban tolerate any opposition, if not, how resistance to Taliban will step up? (3) How will Iran and India react to Afghanistan’s developments, can they cooperate? (4) What are the stances on the Persian Gulf security in Iran and India?
Here are the most important issues touched upon at the session:
We are now witnessing escalation of clashes and violence and spread of terrorism in Afghanistan. However, there has come about a historic opportunity for peace and stability in this country. Iran, as a neighbor to Afghanistan always supports peace and stability in Afghanistan and sees peace and stability in line with its interests and hails any initiative for establishing peace in Afghanistan.
The issue of security is paramount in Afghanistan. Both Iran and India have suffered from instability and insecurity in Afghanistan and have been faced with the crises of the refugees and insecurity in their countries. Therefore, peace and security are key issues for Iran and India and their cooperation in this regard will be substantially influential.
The political, economic and security conditions in the regional countries such as Yemen, Afghanistan, and Libya are proof of imbalance in West Asia. Iran is an influential country in the region. For this, some countries’ attempt to delete Iran from the regional equations has exacerbated the imbalance and further spread instability.
This is while Iran has been seeking a comprehensive regional approach with all the regional countries’ participation. Iran is not pursuing eliminating any of these countries in its regional approach. Thus, Iran and India’s cooperation can reduce the strategic imbalance in the region.