Iran’s ex-president ousted as head of key state body

March 8th, 2011 - 5:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Tehran, March 8 (IANS) Former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani was ousted as head of a key clerical body Tuesday after being criticised by hardliners for his proximity to the country’s beleaguered opposition.

Rafsanjani had chaired the Assembly of Experts, which appoints and supervises the activities of the Supreme Leader whose veto is final in the country’s political affairs, since 2007.

Ayatollah Mohammad Reza Mahdavi Kani, a conservative cleric, was elected to replace him, Mehr news agency said.

Rafsanjani had been attempting to bridge the gap between the president, populist hard-liner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and the fledgling reformist opposition.

–IANS/RIA Novosti
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