Iran’s president and supreme leader in rift over minister’s reinstatement

The Guardian.co.uk reports: “A rift is emerging between Iran’s president and its supreme leader, prompting several members of the parliament to call for the impeachment of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has not been seen in public for days.

Ahmadinejad has refused to appear at the presidential palace in what is being seen as a reaction to Ayatollah Khamenei’s reinstating of a minister he initially ‘asked to resign’.

Under pressure from Ahmadinejad the intelligence minister, Heydar Moslehi, a close ally of the supreme leader, stepped down on 17 April but was reinstated when Khamenei asked him in a letter to stay.

The president has not publicly shown his support for that decision and he refused for the second time to chair a cabinet meeting in which Moslehi was present. Ahmadinejad also reportedly cancelled an official visit to the holy city of Qom prompting reactions among conservatives that ‘the president was sulking’.

Under Iran’s constitution, the president is in charge of appointing cabinet ministers who will hold the ministerial office after the approval of the parliament but an unwritten law requires all officials to abide by the supreme leader.

Iran’s opposition has speculated that Khamenei is worried about the increasing power of Ahmadinejad and especially his chief-of-staff Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei.

Khamenei is believed to be particularly concerned about two key positions in the cabinet, the ministry of foreign affairs and the intelligence ministry, where he traditionally has influence. Ahmadinejad’s administration is also accused of losing billions of dollars of Iran’s oil revenues in recent years…” (Imam Khamenei, the head religious leader of Iran is upset with Ahmadinejad – hurray! Beware Mr. President – “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall” Proverbs 16:18 and Amos 3:3: “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” See the next three reports.)

Iran cleric warns Ahmadinejad not to overestimate his power

Haaretz reports: “A senior Iranian cleric warned President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad not to overestimate his power.

Ahmadinejad is reportedly involved in a dispute with the country’s clergy for allegedly having ignored the orders Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei over the dismissal of the intelligence chief.

According to the Iranian constitution, Khamenei has the final say on all state matters and can even veto decisions by the president on certain cabinet matters.

‘The president should know that the majority vote for him was not absolute but conditional on his obedience towards the orders by the supreme leadership,’ the influential Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami said at the Friday prayer ceremony.

‘The top of the system is the constitution, which has clarified the power structure,’ said Khatami, who is deputy head of the Experts Assembly, a clergy body…”

Speaker Praises Leader’s Key Role in Supporting Nation’s Interests

The Fars News Agency reports: “Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani lauded the determining role played by Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei in defending the interests of the Iranian nation.

‘Safeguarding Iranian nation’s rights is the main concern of the Supreme Leader,’ Larijani said in a ceremony on the occasion of National Day of Councils here in Tehran on.

He added that the recommendations of the Leader have turned all threats against the Iranian nation to opportunities.

The remarks by Larijani came days after Ayatollah Khamenei underlined that he will not allow anyone or any party to derail the revolution.

‘As long as I am alive, I will not allow the nation’s movement to be derailed,’ Ayatollah Khamenei said, addressing a large and fervent congregation of Iranian people who had come to visit him from the country’s Southern province of Fars here in Tehran.

The Leader lauded the services provided by the country’s three branches of power, and said the nation and the leadership will certainly support their present path.

‘But, the leadership will step onto the scene and show interference wherever he feels that a great expediency is ignored,’ Ayatollah Khamenei added.

‘As long as the Leader is alive, he will never allow an iota of diversion to happen in the Iranian nation’s huge move towards its ideals and causes,’ the Leader reiterated…”

Iran leader Ahmadinejad returns to work after ‘boycott’

BBC News reports: “Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has ended a boycott of his official duties by chairing a cabinet meeting, Iranian media say.

Mr. Ahmadinejad had not been seen at work for more than a week, amid reports of a rift with the supreme leader.

The confrontation came to light after supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei rejected the dismissal of Intelligence Minister Heidar Moslehi last month.

Conservatives MP had put pressure on Mr. Ahmadinejad to resume his duties…”