General

Former President of Iran Criticises Supreme Leader

by Jazeh Miller

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran from 2005 to 2013, has launched a surprising verbal attack on the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. Ahmadinejad criticised him, saying that he is very similar to the former Shah of Iran that was overthrown during the 1979 revolution.

He highlighted the power of the people saying that they cannot be underestimated, basically predicting another uprising and revolution in the country. He strongly criticised Supreme Leader Khamenei and his family and the role they play in ruling the country and influencing the Iranian government.

His comments were made during a recording that was partly released on his Twitter account. He promised that the full recording would be released in the very near future.
Ahmedinejad said: “No one is more important than the people. Positions of power in any government are not inherited by a special group. We did not rise in a revolution against a family to replace it with another family.”

Relations between the Supreme Leader and the former president turned bad during the most recent election campaign. Ahmedinejad who wanted to run for presidency was told to stand down by the Supreme Leader. The reason he gave was that he did not want the country to become polarised.

The Guardian Council, basically a panel of jurists that decide whatever the Supreme Leader wants them to decide, disqualified Ahmedinejad. Also disqualified was his ally Hamid Baghaei. The reason behind the disqualifications was their ineligibility to run for presidency in these elections. The Guardian Council has a large role in getting rid of any candidates that the Supreme Leader does not want to succeed in the elections.

As part of this conflict between the two parties, Hamid Baghaei was arrested by authorities last month. He was held for several days before being released again. Ahmadinejad’s former media adviser, Abdelraza Daouri, was also arrested on the charge of “offensive” remarks found on his Facebook page (written by other people). He was sentenced to three years in prison.

He is not the first person to comment on an escalation of dissident activity in the country. At the annual “Free Iran” rally, organised by the main opposition – the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) in Paris last month, the numerous prominent political figures from across the world commented on how the increasing dissent in Iran was going to bring imminent regime change to the country.

 

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