“We need an open dialogue”

Mr Nouripour, at the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum you took part in a panel discussion of the consequences for the Middle East of the nuclear agreement with Iran. In your view, how does the agreement change the situation in the region?

Iran has significantly more money at its disposal following the end of economic sanctions. Unfortunately, it spends this money not only on good causes but also on regional military conflicts. Without an agreement, however, the uranium enrichment centrifuges would simply continue to run without any inspections – as this is the quickest way to acquire a nuclear bomb, this is still the worse option.

This year’s Berlin Foreign Policy Forum is focusing on the future of Europe. How can European foreign policy contribute to greater stability in the Middle East?

Europeans must finally address controversial issues in an open manner. Ultimately, this is the only way in which they will be able to speak with one voice. Foreign policy as regards the Syrian crisis differs considerably from one EU member state to another – from Great Britain or Germany to the Czech Republic. This must be discussed openly so that we can find ways of working together. One good example of how much the Europeans can achieve when they pull together are the nuclear negotiations with Iran, when Great Britain for example was able to exert positive influence on the USA while Germany did the same with Iran.

The Berlin Foreign Policy Forum is also keen to promote open dialogue. What sets this event apart?

The various sessions provide an opportunity for very clear and very tough discussions – in an extremely international atmosphere. At the same time, the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum is all about discussing political issues with maximum public impact. Now more than ever before we are seeing just how much politics needs such openness and transparency. That is what makes an event like the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum so important.

Berliner Foreign Policy Forum


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