L’option diplomatique

DENVER – Un diplomate russe de haut niveau, comparant la Corée du Nord et l’Iran, me dit un jour : « Les Nord-Coréens sont comme des enfants du quartier avec une boîte d’allumettes. Les Iraniens sont ceux dont nous devons vraiment nous préoccuper ».

Que les discussions entre le groupe 5 + 1 (les cinq membres permanents du Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies, plus l’Allemagne) et l’Iran, qui se sont achevées à Istanbul le 14 avril et qui doivent reprendre à Bagdad le 23 mai, aboutissent ou non reste très incertain. Le pari sûr serait de miser sur un échec. Mais les personnes de peu de foi doivent comprendre un fait essentiel, pourtant parfois obscur, concernant les négociations de cette sorte : elles ont lieu pour deux raisons.

La première est bien sûr de persuader le pays concerné à se rallier au point de vue des autres pays. Mais la seconde raison est que les négociations doivent également servir à démontrer que tout ce qui pouvait être fait a été fait avant d’envisager d’autres étapes – et en particulier la décision extrêmement risquée d’une intervention militaire. Un engagement militaire nécessite d’être largement accepté au plan international, et cette condition ne peut être réunie qu’à la suite d’efforts diplomatiques de bonne foi.

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