The temperature is rising over Iran’s nuclear policy. Hilary Clinton has insisted the Iranians answer US concerns over their nuclear programme; Russia, thought to be more friendly, has now said it will back sanctions if the issue is not dealt with; Nicholas Sarkozy has said he is certain Tehran is determined to build a bomb; and Israel has signaled its readiness to attack Iran to stop that happening. Back in Tehran the government line, supported by most Iranians, is the country has a right to develop nuclear power, but has no intention of making weapons. And the man who has to persuade the likes of Clinton and Sarkozy is the former university lecturer, Said Jalilee, Iran’s chief security negotiator, who finds himself at the centre of the most potentially dangerous international crisis of recent years. On October 1st the US and Iran are due to have their first face to face meetings since Barack Obama called for ‘engagement’. Jalilee, and all the others round the table will need courage, as the only way to solve this conundrum will be some sort of compromise which will aggravate national pride, but in the long term will bring peace.
- Said Jalilee to have wisdom and courage as he prepares for these crucial negotiations
- For all those involved to have a divine loathing for the misery of war
- For the difficulties of Iran and US’ past relationship to be left behind