For decades, the question has haunted the Arab and Muslim world, heard across Iran and Syria, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, and in the author’s home country of Lebanon. Was it always so? When did the extremism, intolerance and bloodletting of today displace the region’s cultural promise and diversity?
To mark the start of a new decade, Frontline brings together a panel of experts to discuss the future of Hong Kong, recent dramatic events involving Iran, the continuing tensions between Russia and Ukraine, and other unfolding stories around the world. What are the common threads which tie them together? Are we headed for more unrest in 2020 and the decade ahead?
With tensions rising sharply between Iran and the west following President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear deal, we welcome Jack Straw to the Frontline Club for a timely discussion with journalist and author Ramita Navai about British-Iranian relations, his view of Iran’s internal politics and the culture, psychology and history of a much-misunderstood nation.
In the month the US is expected to review the Iran nuclear deal, our panel reflect on one year of President Rouhani in power, his accomplishments and legacies, both domestic and international.
The election of President Donald Trump has raised tensions between the US and Iran just as an intense power struggle plays out ahead of Iran’s presidential election in May. Ahead of the election we will reflect on Iran under President Rouhani and where the country’s international relations are headed.
The politics of Iran are frequently analysed and debated on the international stage but rarely do we glimpse what everyday life is like in Tehran. In City of Lies: Love, Sex, Death and the Search for Truth in Tehran, Ramita Navai returns to the city where she was born to explore the lives of its residents.
For June’s members’ BookNight, Ramita Navai will be joining us to discuss her portrait of a complex, colourful and changing city, as well as Iranian society more generally.
To Light A Candle is a film by journalist Maziar Bahari, focusing on the Baha’is of Iran and their peaceful response to decades of state-sponsored persecution. The Baha’is are Iran’s largest religious minority. Persecuted because of their faith, they are barred from teaching and studying at University. #NotACrime is an international campaign working to stop the human rights abuse of Iranian Baha’is and encourage universities around the world to admit Iranian Baha’i students.
On Tuesday 15 March the Frontline Club hosted a screening of the first episode from new BBC Two series Inside Obama’s White House. It was followed by a Q&A with series producer Norma Percy and director Paul Mitchell, moderated by author and Guardian journalist Jonathan Freedland.
By Charlotte Beale Legendary Iranian photographer Abbas joined journalist and filmmaker Maziar Bahari in a conversation at the Frontline Club on 3 February 2016, chaired by CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer. Bahari and Abbas have collaborated to launch abbas.site, a platform showcasing Abbas’s photographic body of work on Iran since 1970, including his coverage of the 1979 Iranian Revolution.
Magnum photographer Abbas will be joining us to show and discuss his extraordinary body of work on Iran. Spanning from the 1970s to his return in 1997 after 17 years of exile, his photographs capture every level of Iranian politics and society – from the Shah and his men to the streets of Tehran.
By Antonia Roupell A panel discussion focused on The Fight Against Daesh made for a timely first First Wednesday of the year at the Frontline Club. The packed event on 6 January was chaired by David Loyn, foreign correspondent for the BBC for over 30 years. The speakers included Richard Spencer, Middle East editor of The Daily and Sunday […]
By Dimple Vijaykumar On Wednesday 2 September 2015, the Frontline Club hosted a debate on what the recent Iran nuclear agreement could mean for the country, the region and relations with the West. Just a few hours before the event, it was announced that President Obama had secured enough support in the Senate to ensure […]
After years of negotiating world powers have reached a historic deal with Iran, limiting their nuclear activity in return for the lifting of international economic sanctions. For the first First Wednesday after the summer break we will be debating what the Iran deal means for the country, the region and relations with the West.
By Antonia Roupell The Frontline Club began its June documentary programme on Monday 1 with a retrospective look at various forms of non-violent protests in the cross-media documentary, Everyday Rebellion. The film was directed by the Riahi brothers and Arman Riahi was present for a lively Q&A after the screening.
By Antonia Roupell Nearly three years on from President Obama’s infamous ‘red line’ statement, Syrian activist and filmmaker Orwa Nyrabia, Syrian human rights lawyer Laila Alodaat, journalist Jonathan Littell and Nerma Jelacic of the Commission for International Justice and Accountability (CIJA), joined an audience at the Frontline Club on Thursday 21 May. In a discussion chaired by Owen Bennett-Jones, host of Newshour […]
By Elliott Goat “To live in Tehran you have to lie. Morals don’t come into it. Lying in Tehran is about survival.” Speaking at the Frontline Club on Wednesday 21 May about her new book City of Lies, Ramita Navai was joined in conversation by the BBC’s Middle East Correspondent Jeremy Bowen. She began by elaborating on the […]
The politics of Iran is frequently analysed and debated on the international stage but rarely do we glimpse what everyday life is like in Tehran. In her new book City of Lies, Ramita Navai returns to the city where she was born to explore the lives of its residents. She will be joining us in conversation with the BBC’s Middle East Editor, Jeremy Bowen, to talk about her exploration of modern day Tehran and what life in the city signals about how the country will develop.
By Sally Ashley-Cound On 28 January at the Frontline Club, a panel chaired by CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer discussed the possible start of a new chapter for Iran following the election of Hassan Rouhani as president. Rouhani is not only in favour with the Supreme Leader and political hardliners but also backed by reformists, due to […]
In June 2013, Hassan Rouhani was elected president of Iran, running with a mandate of “moderation and wisdom”. He promised to free political prisoners and guarantee civil rights, to return “dignity to the nation”. As dialogue with the US and other world powers continues to improve, we will be exploring the changes this new leader is enacting both on the international stage and within Iran.
By Jim Treadway The election of cleric Hassan Rouhani to Iran’s presidency last week has Iranians and the world turning their heads to wonder: is the Islamic Republic changing direction? Will Rouhani’s promised pragmatism and reform replace the hardline conservatism of incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad? An expert panel convened at the Frontline Club on 26 June, […]
by Sally Ashley-Cound With just over a week to go until Iranians go to the polls to vote for a new president, the Frontline Club’s First Wednesday panel on 5 June discussed the question: who will be the next president of Iran and why does it matter?
On 14 June Iranians will go to to the polls to vote for a new president. The last presidential election in 2009 saw mass protest on the streets, resulting in a violent crackdown. Throughout June, in association with BBC Persian, we will be joined by experts, journalists and commentators to make sure you are up […]
Following the presidential election in Iran, we will be bringing together a panel of experts to deliberate the results and what they mean for the future of the country. In association with BBC Persian Service, we will be taking an in-depth look at Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, exploring his affiliations and policies at home and internationally.
The screening is organised by BBC Persian Service.
Since his election in 2005, Iran’s President Ahmadinejad has become the most well-known Iranian since the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Khomeini. Produced by the BBC Persian Service, this documentary looks at the rise of Ahmadinejad and explains how this provincial politician with a PhD in traffic management became a personality to be reckoned with.
Followed by a panel discussion with: Sadeq Saba, head BBC Persian; Bozorgmehr Sharafedin, filmmaker and journalist and Kasra Naji, special correspondent for BBC Persian TV.
By Laura Hughes On 24th April 2013, the Frontline Club hosted a discussion on Iran’s political system in the lead up to the country’s elections in June. Azadeh Moaveni, former Middle East correspondent for Time magazine, hosted the panel of Iranian experts.
By Alexandra Glynn A week after International Women’s Day, women were still very much in the spotlight for the screening of Forbidden Voices, a documentary about three female dissident bloggers at the Frontline Club on Friday 15 March. Director Barbara Miller’s powerful film follows three women – from Cuba, China and Iran – who defy the […]
World week ahead: Pope Francis’ inauguration, Obama’s first trip to Israel, ceasefire in Turkey, and Musharraf return to Pakistan
By Jasper Wenban-Smith, international editor of ForesightNews. A round up of world news in the week ahead from journalist resource ForesightNews. Monday 18 March On Monday, the UN Human Rights Council will formally consider a highly critical report on Israeli settler activities that was published at the end of January. Meanwhile, in Yemen a national […]
By Jasper Wenban-Smith, international editor of ForesightNews. A round up of world news in the week ahead from journalist resource ForesightNews. Monday 11 March On Monday, a two-day referendum on the political status of the Falklands Islands wraps-up, with the results due that evening. The referendum is largely symbolic, since the islanders overwhelmingly favour retaining […]
Deepwater Horizon trial, Kerry-Lavrov meeting, and Papal resignation frame busy week in global affairs
By Jasper Wenban-Smith, international editor of ForesightNews. A round up of world news in the week ahead from journalist resource ForesightNews. Monday 25 February Voting in Italy’s general election, which began on Sunday, will conclude on Monday. Suggestions that former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi may be staging a last-minute surge have rattled financial markets recently, […]
Followed by a Q&A with Barbara Miller and Iranian blogger Farnaz Seifi
On the Internet, their voices are skillfully shielded, but the famous bloggers Yoani Sánchez, Zeng Jinyan and Farnaz Seifi aren’t afraid of the dictatorial regimes in their respective home countries of Cuba, China and Iran. Director Barbara Miller follows these brave young rebels on their dangerous journey. She traces their use of social media like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to denounce and combat human rights and freedom of speech violations in their countries.