Iran–Netherlands relations

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Iran–Netherlands relations
Map indicating locations of Iran and Netherlands



Iran–Netherlands relations refers to diplomatic relations between Iran and the Netherlands. Relations between the Netherlands and Persia has existed since the 17th century. However, the relationship changed significantly after the Iranian Revolution.


Beginning the Relation in 17th Century[edit]

The political relations between Persia and the Netherlands was started during the Kingdom of Shah Abbas. In 1626, the first Persian ambassador to Holland, Mousa Beig (Persian: موسی بیگ) presented his Credentials at the States-General of the Netherlands.

20th Century[edit]

The Netherlands' Prince Bernhard, Shah of Iran and Queen Farah, Tehran, 1970s

In the 1960s and 1970s, the Persian and Royal Dutch Families had various state visits to each other's countries.

Relations with the Islamic Republic[edit]

The Netherlands has condemned Iran over its nuclear program.

In 2011, Dutch Foreign Minister announced the suspension of official relations between the Netherlands and Iran, in the aftermath of the execution, in Iran, of a Dutch-Iranian woman.[1][2]


The Netherlands was formally one of Iran's leading trade partners in Europe. At least 65 Dutch companies have economic ties with the Islamic Republic. In spite of economic sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union, Shell, a UK-registered Anglo-Dutch oil company continues to buy billions in crude oil from Iran each year.[3]

Political-Economic Conflicts[edit]

In the 1970s, the Persian Embassy in Wassenaar and later in The Hague was occupied by the Persian students. In 1974 the Persian (Iranian) government suspended all imports from Netherlands for a while. It was a sign of protest on that time.[4]

In 2008 Alaeddin Boroujerdi, head of the Iran's Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, warned the Netherlands not to Air Controversial 'Anti-Muslim' Film by Geert Wilders.[5]

The Islamic Republic of Iran has on various occasions criticised the Netherlands for funding the station. During the 2009 public unrest and demonstrations in Iran, Majid Ghahremani, Iranian ambassador to the Netherlands, accused the Dutch government of interfering in Iran's internal affairs. At the same time, a Dutch foreign ministry spokeswoman told Reuters that they had decided to continue to provide funding to the radio station, with the aim of improving the situation of human rights in Iran.[6][7]

Other relations[edit]

Iran has accused the Netherlands of supporting terrorism in Iran.[8] Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said "We can see an example of the wrong path of Western countries, especially the Netherlands, in supporting terrorist groups... who have over 12,000 killings in their records," Mehmanparast said at his weekly press conference.[9]

Cultural relations[edit]

In 2011 Iran established a series of cultural exhibits showing pictures featuring Iran's historical monuments and tourist attractions.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Dutch freeze contacts with Iran over hanging". 29 January 2011 – via 
  2. ^ Richards, Victoria. "The Netherlands freezes ties with Iran". 
  3. ^ Donovan, John (27 September 2010). "Shell increases oil trade with Iran – despite sanctions".  C1 control character in |title= at position 37 (help)
  4. ^ "PERZIË BLOKKERT IMPORT UIT ONS LAND", Nieuwsblad van het Noorden, 1974-04-19, retrieved 2010-08-31 
  5. ^ "Iran Warns Netherlands Not to Air Controversial 'Anti-Muslim' Film", FOX NEWS, 2008-01-21, retrieved 2010-08-31 
  6. ^ "Iran boos over hulp Den Haag aan radio oppositie", NRC, 2009-06-25, retrieved 2010-06-23 
  7. ^ "Dutch-based Persian radio website defaced by hackers", Reuters, 2009-01-31, retrieved 2010-06-23 
  8. ^ Iran accuses the Netherlands of supporting terrorism
  9. ^ Iran accuses Netherlands of backing 'terrorists'
  10. ^ "Atigh Grand Mosque in holy city of Qom". 


  • Herbert, Thomas. Travels in Persia 1627-1629. Edited by Sir Williams Foster, London, 1928.
  • Perzië Blokkert Import Uit Ons Land. Nieuwsblad van het Noorden, 19-04-1974.
  • Meilink, M. A. P. The earliest Relations between Persia and the Netherlands. "Persica" (Annual of the Dutch-Iranian Society), Vol. 6, 1974.
  • Hotz, A. Journaal der reis van den gezant der O. I Compagnie, Joan Cunaus naar Perzië in 1651-1652 door Cornelis Speelman. Hist Gen., Utrecht, Amsterdam, 1980.