On Thursday 3 May 2018 the Afghan Institute for Strategic Studies (AISS), held the lunching ceremony of its latest research paper titled “the Afghan elites perception toward the Islamic Republic of Iran” Distinguished politicians and diplomats, academics, civil society members and media representatives attended the event. The AISS latest research paper sheds lights on the perception of Afghanistan’s elites toward Iran’s security, economic, religious and cultural policies.
Dr. Rahimi, an advisor to the research team and a reviewer of the report, presented a summary of the main findings of the report, highlighting the importance of role of governments in shaping people, s perception towards each other. “The elite’s perception in a given country toward another country, s policies, impacts the policy making strategies in that country; therefore it is necessary to study it.”
Dr. Chegenizadeh, the author of the report, said that the survey,s main objective was to highlight the perception of Afghanistan’s elite community toward certain policies that Iran pursue in Afghanistan. He emphasized that no one should manipulate the report’s findings to attack either sides. “This research is being conducted for the betterment of security situation in the region. We should remember that national security and national interest are not two separate notions. These are relational notions.”
Dr. Davoodi, Iranian scholar, appreciated the publication of the report as a positive step for better understanding of the situation across the two counties, hoping for the continuation of such efforts. He presented a brief critical review of the report suggesting that beside descriptive data analysis, qualitative analysis is needed to back up the statistic findings. “In such studies, we should look for causal relationships. The statistic data should be analyzed through in-depth qualitative discussions.”
The event continued with an open question and answer session.
H.E Iran’s ambassador to Afghanistan, Mr. Bahrami commented on the report saying that this research paper should be appreciated as a new phenomenon. He emphasized that regarding the improvement of the relationship between Iran and Afghanistan there are many opportunities that need to be developed. The ambassador of Iran stressed that “we should not always think thought the governments to assess the situation. We must remember that nations are the fundamental entities that build the governments.”
As the second part of this report, the research team will conduct another study about the perception of Iran, elites towards the policies of Afghanistan