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News Link • Iran

The Iranian threat: Military or political?

•, D. Parvaz

While Iran's nuclear programme has been at the centre of foreign and economic policy debates for months, what seems unclear is the precise nature of the threat it might pose.

Is Iran striving for nuclear latency (the ability to produce nuclear weapons) or is it actually striving to build weapons? Would they deploy them, or use them as a means of further establishing its power in the region?

There have been a series of inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities over the years, with mixed results and levels of cooperation from Iran.

Tensions have neared the boiling point several times over the years, and in the wake of yet another report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), stating concern and doubt about the civilian nature of Iran's nuclear programme in November, Iranian officials openly discussed shutting down a key global oil transport route, the Strait of Hormuz, running along Iran's western and southern coastlines.

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