For a Kinder, Gentler Society
Missiles, Market, Mythology
The Political, Economic, and Cultural Presence of Koreans In Iran
  • Shirzad Azad
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Korea is back in the news, and so is Iran. As tensions rise again, few of us are aware that the two Koreas and Iran are engaging in many ways, and have been for more than fifty years. Despite the nations’ seeming dissimilarities, Koreans have been quite active in Iran since the 1960s - under the Pahlavi Dynasty, President Ahmadinejad, and today. The author, an Iranian expert on Iranian–East Asian relations, looks into the reasons why significant political, cultural, and above all commercial ties came into being. The relationship clearly suits Korea's businesses very well - South Korea's penetration into Iran's markets and culture are quite clear, and the author questions the effects on Iran's economy and society. However, South Koreans are sometimes discomfited to see that they are linked to Iran on many issues on the diplomatic front as well. Meanwhile, North Korea also has political and military interests in Iran though that relationship is even more sensitive and is not much publicized. The nuclear deal signed between Tehran and the 5+1 party (United States, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany) in July 2015 adds to the significance of such relationships.

About the Author

With a doctorate in Political Science and International Relations, Shirzad Azad has studied and worked in East Asia for close to a decade, including five years in South Korea (ROK). He has three scholarly books in English, including Koreans in the Persian Gulf: Policies and International Relations (Routledge, 2015) and several other academic studies with a special focus on Iran-East Asia relations.

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Year: 2018
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