Tehran, Iran, Aug. 14
By Mehdi Sepahvand – Trend:
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has appointed new members into the observatory body of Expediency Council, months after its former chief Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani passed away and the previous term of the council came to an end.
According to Khamenei’s decree, Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahrudi, a conservative, will head the council for the five-year term ahead, the Iranian Supreme Leader’s official website reported August 14.
The surprising point about the new Expediency Council, however, is that Khamenei has once again counted former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as a member.
Ahmadinejad radically distanced himself from Khamenei toward the end of his tenure in 2013. Nevertheless, this year he disregarded Ayatollah Khamenei’s word that he should not run for president, for which he was harshly criticized and excommunicated by those faithful to the leadership.
The Expediency Council is an administrative assembly appointed by the Supreme Leader and was created upon the revision to the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran on February 6, 1988. It was originally set up to resolve differences or conflicts between the Parliament and the Guardian Council.
The council’s former head Rafsanjani died January 8, 2017, leaving the body without a chief except for the recently acting head, Ali Movahedi Kermani. Rafsanjani had been the only head to the council since his predecessor Khamenei left the body for the role of leadership in June 1989.
The previous term of the council ended in March.