Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Government Accounting Office (2)


The Latest from Iran (8 December): Tehran to Hit New Low in Oil Exports?

See also Iran Snap Analysis: A Regime Still Worried About the Green Movement? (Yes.)
The Latest from Iran (7 December): Maintaining the Oil Squeeze

1740 GMT: Nuclear Watch. The "hard-line" paper Kayhan, using a historical reference, has warned that leading political figures are seeking to force the Supreme Leader to "drink from the "poison chalice" and hold direct talks with the US over the nuclear issue.

The expression refers to Ayatollah Khomeini's statement when he reluctantly agreed to the punishing conditions of a cease-fire in the Iran-Iraq War in 1988.

The regime pursued "back-channel" discussions with the US in the autumn, but these appear to have come to a halt in October. Since then, Tehran has grown frustrated with an apparent failure of Washington and its allies to talk about an Iranian proposal trading enrichment of 20% uranium for sanctions, and this week Speaker of Parliament Ali Larijani indicated the Islamic Republic is backing away from the idea of direct talks.

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US Politics: Compromising on the Federal Government's Debt

A few weeks ago it appeared that Republicans were prepared to use the need for increasing the debt limit to push through some of the controversial measures included in their 2012 Budget Resolution, notably the plan proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc) to change the Medicare programme for future beneficiaries and/or a Balanced Budget Amendment that would require sharp and immediate reductions in government spending.

These options are not totally off the table, especially with the pressures being exerted within Republican ranks by new members of Congress keen to assuage their Tea Party constituencies, but the overwhelming message that emerged from participants after the Biden talks is the urgent need for compromise before the debt limit vote.

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