29 Mar '16, 2pm

[#NATOReview] Rise of #Iran as a regional power: Shia empowerment & its limits

[#NATOReview] Rise of #Iran as a regional power: Shia empowerment & its limits

The events of the Arab Spring proved to be a game changer for the Islamic Republic. The overthrow of Arab rulers paved the way for a more assertive Iranian foreign policy in the Middle East. The wave of democratization reached, among others, countries with sizeable Shia communities. The Islamic Republic has been a self-declared defender of Shia causes. It has therefore constantly supported demands for political reforms in Bahrain, an island with a Shia majority and a Sunni monarchy. The Iranian regime has also harshly criticized Saudi Arabia for the mistreatment of the Shia minority in the oil-rich Eastern Province. The execution of the Saudi Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr created a diplomatic crisis between Riyadh and Tehran in January 2016. Additionally, the Iranian leadership has supported the Shia-oriented Houthi movement in Yemen, especially after the fall of the Saleh regi...

Full article: http://www.nato.int/docu/review/2016/Also-in-2016/iran-re...

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