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HomeMiddle EastWith outsiders purged, Iran hard-liners set to settle Khamenei succession

With outsiders purged, Iran hard-liners set to settle Khamenei succession


TEHRAN — The question of who will succeed Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has been central to Iran’s political landscape in recent years. 

Yet, due to its sensitive nature, the debate has rarely been brought to the public sphere, discussed merely inside corridors of power, where Khamenei’s staunch loyalists are believed to be setting the stage so the next leader is unquestionably his pick.

This week, former moderate President Hassan Rouhani, now effectively sidelined from the country’s decision-making processes, brought the issue to the fore in a public letter protesting his disqualification from the Assembly of Experts, the clerical body in charge of appointing the next supreme leader. 

Rouhani’s strongly worded letter, the fourth in a series, was published in response to the electoral vetting body, the Guardian Council, which found him unfit to participate in the election, which ultimately had record-low turnout. Since then, the ex-president has been loudly protesting his “politically motivated” disqualification and requesting explanations from the supervisory body. 



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