French Presidential Election and Macron’s Win: An Iranian View

Wednesday, May 10, 2017


Tahereh Moghri-Moazen
Europe Expert

While congratulating the new French President Emmanuel Macron, who has been considered by his people as deserving this post and they have shown this through their votes, we hope good opportunities would offer themselves for cooperation between the two countries in various fields of economy, security and environment. Iran always wants to see an independent and powerful France, which would be able to tread a different path and through accepting its crucial responsibility at this juncture, would want to negotiate with Iran on an equal standing in order to find solutions to various crises.

Macron has been elected president at a time that the main demands of French people are improvement in the country’s’ economic conditions, establishment of security and adoption of correct stances on international crises. Therefore, in parallel to resolving the country’s domestic problems and turning France into a safe and affluent county, he has to reclaim France’s international position as a powerful and reliable country. He must also make an effort to maintain France’s deserved role within the current global structure.

What macron must know before anything else is that problems are not solved on their own and improvement of a country’s affairs, both in economic and security fields, needs stability, good planning and pragmatism. At the present time and for the next five years to come, the fate of the French people has been tied to the fate of the European Union more than any time before. Many experts believe that the advantages of remaining inside the Union have lost their appeal for EU members, and political officials of member states are responsible for these conditions. When it comes to solving domestic problems in member countries, a medium degree of pragmatism is useless as a solution and all decisions made on a temporary basis are based on trial and error. It goes without saying that under these conditions, people will put their trust in nationalism, because they have always trusted themselves.

With regard to membership in international organizations and treaties, politicians are responsible for drawing up plans after proper research and assessment is done by academic elites and experts, and selling those plans to people. They must also accept that as customers of these products, people do not have to accept those promises, which will immediately expire after the lapse of five years or ten years when somebody else snatches power. At the same time, it must be accepted that people cannot afford to allow politicians spend a lot of their time to gain new experiences.

Another crucial responsibility of the new French president is serious engagement with international issues and, as a first step, showing commitment to international treaties. In fact, this is continuation of the same path, which has been already taken by the two sides that have endeavored a lot and undertaken heavy costs in order to achieve the treaty. The nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries and the Paris Agreement on the climate change were not achieved overnight, but were results of years of efforts by researchers, specialists and politicians.

The immigration crisis in Europe, the ongoing crisis in Syria and the climate crisis are not of the same quality, but the main common ground among them is that they go beyond borders and, therefore, finding solutions to these crises calls for cooperation among all countries, division of labor, and acceptance of responsibility by all countries that want to tackle them. This important goal would not be possible to achieve without attention to other sides’ views. The new French president is expected to take a course different from past decades and come up with an independent and more logical image of France: a France, which will neither be overshadowed by the United States, nor indulge in striking alliances with countries that disturb regional stability in the Middle East.

An independent France can count on Iran’s potentialities for the resolution of international crises. Following the implementation of the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran has been trying to overcome problems resulting from international sanctions and mend its economy. However, there are still many problems on its way, including US laws, which prevent Iran from achieving its goals and bar further expansion of economic cooperation between Iran and European countries, including France.

On the other hand, Iran is now a stable country in a turbulent region and is trying to act responsibly at the height of chaos in its surroundings. Unfortunately, Western officials do not pay attention to the point that if the West is facing any security threat, Iran is at the vortex of the crisis. A historical glance at the past relations between Iran and regional countries can assure Western states that Iran has never considered weakness and absence of threat from its neighbors as an opportunity to boost its own territory and influence. This country, as a responsible country, has always chosen international cooperation and fostering stability as the best way to deal with problems nagging its neighbors.  Therefore, in doing this, it needs an ally, which would pay attention to restrictions with which Iran is faced when making decisions.

The Iranian society is a society in which tradition and modernity are currently intertwined. This society is marching toward progress and is willing to take advantage of modern science and technology in order to guarantee progress of its future generations. Iran cannot be made limited by such labels as the “Third World” or be prevented from getting its hands on the most advanced equipment, both in medical and military fields, through the use of force. Having interest in science and making efforts to break new grounds are among the main characteristics of Iranians in any position. Meanwhile, this country has been cooperating with the Ramsar Convention since 1960 and can further help promote various climate agreements.

In conclusion, as is the case with France, Iran is also bent on achieving such goals as economic improvement, job creation and ending recession as its foremost priorities. With regard to foreign policy, Iran seeks to do away with regional crises, establish stability across the region and remain committed to international treaties. During recent years, Iran’s nuclear agreement proved that the Islamic Republic remains committed to its obligations. Therefore, we hope that Iran and France would join hands and find solutions whose results would be win-win achievements as well as collective security and welfare. Predicting the future and putting the country on the right economic, political and social track are heavy responsibilities for a head of state and we wish the new French president would be able to fulfill these responsibilities in the best possible manner.


*Photo Credit: PBS

*These views represent those of the author and are not necessarily Iran Review's viewpoints.


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