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Source: Bloomberg

Feb 13, 2023

By Golnar Motevalli

Organizers at the annual Munich Security Conference have not invited the Iranian government to this year’s event, citing “the current political situation” in the country.

Representatives of Iranian civil society have been asked to attend instead, an email sent by those running the conference said, without naming individuals. The forum draws together senior foreign and defense officials and is due to start on Feb. 17.

The decision comes after the Islamic Republic’s use of deadly force and executions to crush months of widespread anti-government protests, which were triggered by the death in police custody of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini last September.

Both the crackdown and Tehran’s decision to provide Russia with military drones for its invasion of Ukraine have prompted a raft of sanctions over several months. Iran’s nuclear talks with world powers have been effectively suspended.

Russia has also been excluded from this year’s event because of its invasion of Ukraine. 

Iran has sent a senior official to the conference since at least 2009, according to the event’s official website, with the exception of the years 2011-12 — when the country was sanctioned by the US and the EU — and 2021, following the Covid-19 pandemic.

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