The Back Channel

'Intense' Iran Nuclear Talks End With Agreement to Meet Again

Friday, May. 25, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Two days of talks between Iran and six nations ended Thursday in Baghdad with no breakthroughs but a plan to meet again next month, write Al-Monitor's Laura Rozen and Barbara Slavin. Chief European Union negotiator Catherine Ashton said that while discussions made it clear while "that there is some common ground … significant differences remain.”

Iran Economy Minister Warns: Sanctions 'Lose-Lose' Situation

Monday, May. 21, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

In an interview with Al-Monitor's Laura Rozen, Iran Economy Minister Shamseddin Hosseini said that Iran looks to make progress at upcoming talks and encouraged the West to continue negotiating with Khamenei's representatives. He warned that energy sanctions could hurt the economies of those imposing thems more than Tehran.

New Report Finds It Is Time To Upgrade US-Turkey Ties

Wednesday, May. 9, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

The United States and Turkey have found themselves growing increasingly aligned amid the Arab uprisings of the past 16 months. Laura Rozen writes that a new report argues for an upgrade of US-Turkish relations, one that recognizes Turkey’s growing importance on the world scene and appreciates the complexity of Turkish democracy.

Kurdistan’s Man In Washington Preps For New Role Back Home

Wednesday, May. 2, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Qubad Talabani, the longtime Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) envoy to Washington, will move to Kurdistan this summer after a twelve-year run representing Iraqi Kurdistan here that has seen the US invasion and withdrawal from Iraq, Laura Rozen reports.

Could Iran Nuclear Talks Founder over Sanctions Relief?

Tuesday, May. 1, 2012 | Barbara Slavin, Washington Correspondent

President Barack Obama signed an executive order Tuesday that bars anyone who violates existing U.S. sanctions against Iran and Syria from gaining access to U.S. financial and commercial systems. Barbara Slavin and Laura Rozen analyze whether Iran will get the sanctions relief it is seeking from nuclear talks scheduled for later this month.

Israel's Former Intelligence Chief Blasts Bibi's Iran Strategy

Sunday, Apr. 29, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Yuval Diskin launched a stunning broadside attack on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak Friday, saying he doesn’t trust their “messianic” leadership. He accused them of promoting a war on Iran that could accelerate, rather than set back, Iran’s acquisition of a nuclear weapon.

Iranian Hard-Liners Send Positive Signals on Talks

Thursday, Apr. 26, 2012 | Laura Rozen, Back Channel

Something unusual has happened in the wake of the recent Iran nuclear talks in Istanbul: Iran hardliners have taken to the media and Friday prayers to put a positive gloss on the talks and signal interest in a compromise. Laura Rozen on reading the Tehran tea leaves.

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