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HomeOpinionUnder the pretext of holding the third forum of Tehran talks

Under the pretext of holding the third forum of Tehran talks

The neighborhood policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran: an approach to friendship and trust building

Why Iran’s foreign policy should seek to build trust and friendship at the policy and strategic levels? The answer is short. Iran is a security actor in the international community. The conditions of “security” have been imposed on Iran. Being a security actor in the international arena, the costs and difficulties to advance national interests are much higher. For a secured actor in international relations, any consensus and action such as sanctions against it, even by its closest neighbours, is considered legitimate and a “must”. The securitized actor is introduced as a destabilizing element of the international system and order.

Due to the imposed isolation, the security actor in the international community will suffer many difficulties to advance its economic and cooperation-oriented affairs, even in relation to its neighbours. As a result, in addition to energy and cost, the security actor in the field of international relations requires more subtlety and finesse in order to advance his relations and interests in interaction with other international actors.

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In the meantime, one of the subtleties and viewpoints of policymakers for such actors, in addition to paying attention to different levels of diplomacy as a tool for easier advancement of interests, is an inevitable need for foreign policy to be idea-oriented.

The meaning of the idea in foreign policy is any initiative at the multilateral, regional and international levels to escape the imposed international conditions. In these years, Iran has proposed different ideas such as a strong Iran in a strong region, network security, Hormuz peace and neighbourhood policy. Each of these ideas has been proposed to reduce the amount of pressure caused by the security of Iran. To send a peaceful message based on friendship and trust building to the region and neighbours that Iran is a stabilizing player in the Middle East. Iran, in cooperation with other countries in the region, emphasizes the endogenous security of the region.

The neighbourhood policy proposed by the 13th government was in a way a reaction to the double importance of regional trends as well as the direction of the foreign policy of the 11th and 12th governments in prioritizing the JCPOA issue as the main issue of foreign policy.

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The 13th government sees the neighbourhood policy as the basis for closer proximity to neighbouring countries in order to increase political, economic and security cooperation. A policy that can be an important driving force for the development of Iran’s international relations with the necessary attention to the importance of the neighbours in advancing the order and security of the region as well as exploiting the potential economic capacity of the neighbouring countries.

The prerequisite for the success of the neighbourhood policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in a way that can play an effective role in building trust in foreign policy is multi-level diplomacy with a priority on political and security issues. Multi-level diplomacy is aimed at solving all the concerns and fears that the process of securing Iran from its enemies in the international system has created in the minds and images of the leaders and people of the countries of the region. Multi-level diplomacy is needed because only official diplomacy based on the function of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs alone is not possible to advance it.

Public, sports, scientific, and think tank diplomacy is a prerequisite for the success of neighbourhood policy in regional and international friendship and trust building. Regional and international continuity is also emphasized because, in today’s connected world, it is impossible to speak of success in neighbourhood policy without considering its international and global dimensions.

Therefore, with the beginning of diplomacy to resolve some ambiguities and concerns caused by the security environment about Iran with its neighbours through detailed and multilateral talks, a clear vision of the success of the neighbourhood policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran can be drawn.


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