Earlier this year, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian abruptly canceled his attendance of an annual multilateral meeting in New Delhi. The controversy highlighted ongoing obstacles in the India-Iran relationship, as Tehran continues to struggle to achieve the desired progress in bilateral ties. There is no doubt that China has taken center stage in Iran’s Asia policy. However, the boost in India-Russia trade due to western sanctions on Moscow could highlight Iran’s transit potentials, and thereby reignite the Indo-Iranian relationship.
The Raisina debacle
The March event Amir-Abdollahian skipped was the Raisina Dialogue, an annual geopolitical conference hosted by the Observer Research Foundation (ORF)—a New Delhi-based think tank—and the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. His decision came after ORF posted a promotional video for the event which included footage of Iranian women protesting against the compulsory hijab in demonstrations that erupted in Sept. 2022.
In announcing Amir-Abdollahian’s changed schedule, the Iranian foreign ministry spokesman said the video had been an “unprofessional action” by the conference organizers. Importantly, the debacle over the...
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