A highly populous state whose history and culture extend back thousands of years, a Shiite theocracy with a far-reaching claim to power, the home of massive oil and gas reserves – Iran is possibly among the most complicated and contradictory states in the world. Although the country has been viewed critically by the West since time immemorial, the historic “nuclear deal” of July 2015, which stipulates that Iran will refrain from building nuclear weapons in return for the progressive loosening of sanctions, has brought new movement into the strained relationship.
How have people’s lives changed since then, and what is left of the euphoria over an Iran in the process of opening up? To what degree is Iran today a partner or an opponent for the USA and other Western powers, and what role will it take on in the Middle East in future?
Natalie Amiri (ARD correspondent in Tehran), Anna Engelke (head of the NDR Capital City Studio in Berlin and long-time USA radio correspondent) and Henner Fürtig (director of the GIGA Institute of Middle East Studies) discussed these questions. Julia-Niharika Sen, moderator of the NDR Weltbilder [World Pictures] TV programme, facilitated the evening.
You can watch or listen to a recording of the discussion (in German language).