Iran Issues - 2023


Disputes - international

Iran-Afghanistan: Iran protests Afghanistan's limiting flow of dammed Helmand River tributaries during drought; Afghan and Iranian commissioners have discussed boundary monument densification and resurvey

Iran-Azerbaijan-Kazakhstan-Russia: Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Russia ratified a Caspian seabed delimitation treaty in 2018 based on equidistance, while Iran continues to insist on a one-fifth slice of the sea

Iran-Iraq: Iraq's lack of a maritime boundary with Iran prompts jurisdiction disputes beyond the mouth of the Shatt al Arab in the Persian Gulf

Iran-UAE: Iran and UAE dispute Tunb Islands and Abu Musa Island, which are occupied by Iran; the dispute was rehashed at the September 2021 UN General Assembly meeting; Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corp opened an airport on Greater Tunb in February 2022

Refugees and internally displaced persons

refugees (country of origin): 500,000 undocumented Afghans, 750,000 Afghan refugee card holders, 12,000 Iraqi refugee card holders (2022)

stateless persons: 34 (mid-year 2021)

Trafficking in persons

tier rating: Tier 3 — Iran does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking and is not making significant efforts to do so; therefore, Iran remained in Tier 3; the government took some steps to address trafficking, including forming an anti-trafficking committee to develop strategies and programs to combat trafficking; however, the government continued a policy of recruiting and using child soldiers and coercing adults to fight for Iranian-led militias in Syria; officials continued to perpetrate and condone trafficking crimes; authorities failed to identify and protect trafficking victims among vulnerable populations and continued to treat trafficking victims as criminals; victims continued to face severe punishment or death for unlawful acts traffickers compelled them to commit (2022)

trafficking profile: human traffickers exploit domestic and foreign victims in Iran, and Iranians are exploited abroad; the continuing decline of the Iranian economy has significantly exacerbated human trafficking, particularly for vulnerable and marginalized groups such as ethnic minorities, refugee and migrants, women, and children; women and girls, as well as some men, are highly vulnerable to sex trafficking in Iran; Iranian and Afghan boys and girls are forced into prostitution domestically; Iranian women, boys, and girls are vulnerable to sex trafficking in Afghanistan, Armenia, Georgia, Iraq, Pakistan, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates; Iranian and Afghan refugee and migrant children, orphans, and homeless children increasingly are vulnerable to forced labor in Iran; criminal groups reportedly play a significant role in human trafficking in Iran, including kidnaping or purchasing Iranian and migrant children for forced labor and sexual exploitation; Afghan refugees and migrants, as well as Pakistani migrants, are vulnerable to abuse and labor exploitation (2022)

Illicit drugs

significant transit and destination country for opiates and cannabis products mainly from Afghanistan and Pakistan; produces and consumes methamphetamine and traffics it to  international markets; one of the primary transshipment routes for Southwest Asian heroin to Europe; opium and cannabis most widely used drugs domestically along with increase in crystal methamphetamine

NOTE: The information regarding Iran on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Iran 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Iran 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 22 Aug 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.