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Iran-USSR Diplomatic Tensions

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January, 31, 1948 A.D.:
Iran-USSR Diplomatic Tensions

By: Mir M.Hosseini

On Jan, 31, 1948 Iran took her share of the Cold War between the two blocks. The U.S.S.R. submitted a note protesting American military presence in Iran. The Soviets clearly threatened Iran with military occupation referring to a 1921 agreement that gave them such a right to intervene in case of a threat from the Iranian soil. The Soviets criticized Americans for turning Iran into a military base to be used against them.
Iran responded on Feb, 4, calling the allegations baseless and considered it as intervention in Iran's internal affairs. Iranian officials not only denied any connection between employing American military advisors and the 1921 agreement, they also criticized the Soviet backing of separatist movements which in turn was a violation of the 5th item in the 1921 agreement.
Meanwhile, Majlis approved the U.S. military aid package on Feb, 17. The Soviet ambassador, who did not attend the Norooz greeting ceremonies at the royal court, on March, 24 gave another note in response to Iran's Feb, 4 note. Referring to harboring elements of separatist movements, they insisted on the Soviets' right to host foreign refugees and again compared U.S. military presence in Iran to Nazi Fifth Column operations. However, Iran had already submitted another note on March, 22 criticizing the Bolshevik propaganda against Iran in Soviet media.
Increasing diplomatic tensions created fear in Iranian public who had already experienced the misery after the Soviet occupation. News of Czechoslovakia coming under the Soviet domination, and the Brussels Treaty was another source of fear for Iranians who saw themselves as the next target of the Red Army. Most Iranian politicians advocated a mild approach to the Soviet problem and a moderate path that would not give any pretext to the Bolsheviks.
On April, 6, a milder response came from U.S.S.R. asking Iran not to take their state propaganda seriously. Iran had submitted all communications with the Soviet Union to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).
On July, 1, Ivan Sadchikov visited PM Hajir and submitted proposals to end the diplomatic row between the two countries adding that if Kremlin was pleased, the issue of returning Iran's gold and other properties confiscated by the Soviets during the occupation would easily be resolved. Iran rejected Soviet proposals and refused to negotiate the issues that were Iran's natural rights. Although three separate cases of the Soviet invasion of the Iranian soil were reported in November, tensions decreased towards the end of the year and there was a major shift in Iran's north neighbor's policy, first time after almost 100 years.

KEY TERMS:American , Bolshevik , Brussels , Cold War , Czech , Czechoslovakia , Fifth Column , Haji , Hajir , Iran , Iranian , Ivan Sadchikov , Kremlin , Majlis , Nazi , Norooz , Red Army , SC , Sadchikov , Security Council , Soviet , Soviet Union , UNSC , US , USSR , United Nations , United Nations Security Council

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