to the north by the Caspian Sea, to the northeast by Turkmenistan, to the east by Afghanistan and Pakistan, to the south by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, and to the west by Turkey and Iraq.
The country's central location in Eurasia and Western Asia, and its proximity to the Strait of Hormuz, give it geostrategic importance.
and reached its greatest extent during the Achaemenid Empire founded by Cyrus the Great in the sixth century BC, stretching from Eastern Europe to the Indus Valley, becoming a larger empire than previously ever existed in the world.
The Iranian realm fell to Alexander the Great in the fourth century BC, but reemerged shortly after as the Parthian Empire, followed by the Sasanian Empire, which became a leading world power for the next four centuries.
Arab Muslims conquered the empire in the seventh century AD, ultimately leading to the displacement of the indigenous faiths of Zoroastrianism and Manichaeism with Islam.
During the 1980s, the country was engaged in a war with Iraq, which lasted for almost nine years and resulted in a high number of casualties and financial loss for both sides.According to international observers, Iran's human rights record has rapidly deteriorated, with severe human rights violations being committed by the government against Iranian dissidents; in several cases, several opponents of the current Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei have been tortured, imprisoned, sentenced to death or executed for insulting him.Iran has responded to denunciation of its human rights record by verbally attacking its critics and harshly criticizing them, leading to tensions and anger toward Iran from the West.Since the 2000s, Iran's controversial nuclear program has raised concerns, which is part of the basis of the international sanctions against the country.The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, an agreement reached between Iran and the P5 1, was created on July 14, 2015, aimed to loosen the nuclear sanctions in exchange for Iran's restriction in producing enriched uranium.Iran is a founding member of the UN, ECO, NAM, OIC, and OPEC.