The Iranian regime has increased their military exercises with the re-imposition of US sanctions. It even test fired a short-range ballistic missile. The spike in military action comes after a pause of more than a year. News which didn’t catch the attention of the media is the sending back of 10 batches of 20% enriched uranium which Iran sent to Russia under the 2015 nuclear accord. Iran stated that it is a very sensitive nuclear material that would be needed by them for fueling the Tehran’s Research Reactor. Iran even threatened to restart the 20% uranium enrichment cycle in case the deal goes the wrong way.
The recent short-range ballistic missile test is in order to send a message to Washington so that it reconsiders the sanctions. The missile was fired immediately after Trump came into office. With the US sanctions coming down hard, Tehran is resorting to such practices, along with protests gaining momentum. The re-instated sanctions would take Iran out of the US dollar market.
Under growing threats, Iran is resorting to some measures to save their face. With international pressures escalating, the Iranian regime is required to maintain a stronghold.
A spokesman of the regime’s Atomic Energy Organization stated that in case the nuclear deal remains alive, other sides would be required to sell fuel to Iran and in the event the deal dies, then Iran would feel clear to produce the 20% fuel on their own.
It remains clear for the Iranian regime the ongoing threats can’t continue. Gone are the days, when Tehran dictated its will and wreaked havoc all over the Middle East. During the administration of Obama, it continued to progress with their ballistic missile program. Currently, Iran is engrossed to deepen the rift between the US and Europe. Even Khamenei called for some domestic laws to be implemented in order to tackle money laundering.
On 11th and 12th August, Tehran witnessed widening protests as store owners protested over increasing prices and the scarcity of raw material.