Implications of the Coronavirus Pandemic on the Stability of Iran and the Regional Situation

Author
Marcin Andrzej Piotrowski
Content Type
Special Report
Institution
The Polish Institute of International Affairs
Abstract
Iran’s official figures on cases and deaths from COVID-19 (the disease resulting from coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2) do not reflect the real scale of the pandemic in that country, which might be among the hardest hit in the world. The pandemic will deepen the economic crisis and disfunction of the state, becoming a challenge to Iran’s ruling elite. The regime might survive thanks to the security apparatus and, in parallel, continue its support of Shia militias in Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen, and the Syrian government. Only the succession of power after Ali Khamenei will be the real test of the coherence of the Iranian elite, and in case of disruption, it might result in the collapse of Iran’s theocracy.
Topic
Security, Foreign Policy, Economics, Government, Health, Coronavirus, Pandemic, Elites
Political Geography
Iraq, Iran, Middle East, Yemen, Lebanon, Syrian Arab Republic