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Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatullah Khamenei has spoken in favor of the ‘oppressed Muslims’ of Kashmir for the second time in as many weeks. Though Iran has been supportive of the Kashmir cause, it has avoided to publically talk about it so as to avert the anger of its ally and trading partner in India.

Khamenei implored Iran’s judiciary to “express its firm support or opposition” on several Muslim-related issues including “oppressed personalities like (Nigerian Shiite leader) Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky or Muslims of Myanmar and Kashmir”. This was preceded by an even more clear call for unison to rid Muslims including those in Kashmir under tyrannical rule.In his Eid message, the Supreme Leader said: “Everyone should openly support people of Yemen, Bahrain, and Kashmir.”

In 2010, when Khamenei spoke of Kashmir, India summoned the then acting Iranian Ambassador to register its protest, So far, there has been no statement from New Delhi on Khamenei’s latest comments.One could expect fissures to appear in the ties between the two countries.

For years, Israel and India have been working closely together on counter-terrorism and defense issues and India has been a regular customer of arms from the Jewish state.Besides, defense relations between India and what Iran calls ‘satanic America’ have solidified by leaps and bounds under the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) last year.

Romance with the enemies

The overtly pro-Kashmir statements can be easily attributed to Delhi’s growing closeness with the US and Iran’s perpetual enemy in Israel.Iran’s enmity with the US  and Israel is no secret.Modi, on the other hand, completed a highly successful visit to the US and is currently having a rendezvous in Israel. India is well on its way to strengthen strategic ties with both Washington and Tel Aviv, especially in the realm of defense.Israel has in recent years become an important defense supplier for India. The two countries signed an air and missile defense deal worth almost $2 billion in April, in what Israel termed the “largest defense contract deal” in its history.

Read more:“The US created ISIS,” says Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei

For years, Israel and India have been working closely together on counter-terrorism and defense issues and India has been a regular customer of arms from the Jewish state.Besides, defense relations between India and what Iran calls ‘satanic America’ have solidified by leaps and bounds under the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) last year.

While exclusively talking to GVS, geopolitical analyst, and author, Andrew Korybko said that Iran has not taken India’s courtships with its foes.”Iran felt compelled to speak out against India’s crimes in occupied Kashmir because of Prime Minister Modi’s alliance with “Israel”, which is Iran’s top foe.

Iran has ramped up efforts to dent Israel and the US by getting closer to the beleaguered Qatar and burying the hatchet with Hamas.Last month Tehran resumed financial support for Hamas last month. The ties which were ruptured after the war in Syria are now warming up. This is mainly because of Iran’s continued opposition to Israel.

Read more: Tehran attacks: Is the US-Saudi-Israel team getting ahead of Iran?

While exclusively talking to GVS, geopolitical analyst, and author, Andrew Korybko said that Iran has not taken India’s courtships with its foes.”Iran felt compelled to speak out against India’s crimes in occupied Kashmir because of Prime Minister Modi’s alliance with “Israel”, which is Iran’s top foe. Although Tehran and New Delhi are close energy partners and plan to cooperate on Chabahar and the North-South Transport Corridor to Azerbaijan, Russia, and the EU, the Ayatollah was compelled to speak up for oppressed Muslims in Kashmir due to the openness of Modi’s partnership with Netanyahu,” he said.

He further added on Iran’s concerns regarding the US.”India is also rapidly becoming one of the US’ most important allies in the world, especially in the military-strategic sense after last year’s signing of LEMOA, so Iran has plenty of reasons to be suspicious of India, not least of which is its active role in waging the Hybrid War on CPEC and fostering Baloch separatism. This is a direct existential threat to the Islamic Republic because of the spillover effect that it could have from Pakistan to Iran, so all of these factors contributed to Tehran playing the “Kashmir Card” lately,” he said.

Read more: Iran sits pretty as the Qatar crisis continues to loom

However, he didn’t feel that ties would degenerate with rapidity.He stressed:”In the greater scope of things, however, it doesn’t appear likely that Iran and India will experience a significant falling out in the near future, although the geostrategic contradictions between them are fast on the rise. Rather, it’s more probable that they’ll continue moving forward with their mutually beneficial energy and infrastructure relationship, though potentially with both sides strategically intensifying their information campaigns against the other in order to press their counterpart for ‘better deals’. However, if India agrees to become “Israel’s” Great Power proxy for influencing Iran and forthcoming evidence and/or actions confirm this, then Tehran will, of course, downgrade relations right away and replace India’s energy and infrastructure role in the country with Russia and China.

Ties have been vitiated between the two countries over the past few month but given that Iran has spoken for Kashmir and India has courted Israel both countries can make hay of this opportunity.

“Rather, it’s more probable that they’ll continue moving forward with their mutually beneficial energy and infrastructure relationship, though potentially with both sides strategically intensifying their information campaigns against the other in order to press their counterpart for ‘better deals’. However, if India agrees to become “Israel’s” Great Power proxy for influencing Iran and forthcoming evidence and/or actions confirm this, then Tehran will, of course, downgrade relations right away and replace India’s energy and infrastructure role in the country with Russia and China.”

Read more: Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Israel

In all this Pakistan can find a silver lining and try to arrest a fraying relationship with Iran. Ties have been vitiated between the two countries over the past few month but given that Iran has spoken for Kashmir and India has courted Israel both countries can make hay of this opportunity.

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