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Why West Should Curb Hostility To Non-Aligned Summit in Tehran

The Non-Aligned Movement summit August 26–31 will be a diplomatic coup for Iran, write Abbas Maleki and Kaveh Afrasiabi, bolstering its international clout and "inalienable right" to enrich uranium. Though many governments have reacted negatively to the Tehran summit, the authors call for a more nuanced Western approach.
Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi (R) is seen in Nicosia June 26, 2012. Iran on Tuesday urged the European Union to reconsider an embargo on Iranian oil that comes into effect on July 1, saying it wanted engagement and not confrontation with the bloc.   REUTERS/Andreas Manolis  (CYPRUS - Tags: POLITICS)

The approaching 16th summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Tehran at the end of August is shaping up as a diplomatic coup for Iran, by virtue of the planned participation of dozens of world leaders and the summit's transfer of NAM's presidency from Egypt to Iran for the next three years.

This will likely enhance Iran's capability to bolster its international solidarity and, above all, to defend its "inalienable nuclear rights" — the right to enrich uranium for peaceful purposes, which has been consistently supported at previous NAM summits as well as by the NAM representatives at the International Atomic Energy Organization (IAEA).

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