Reformist Letter to Khamenei Calling for Approval of former President Khatami’s candidacy?

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Asadollah Badamchian, one of the most prominent figures of the traditional-Conservative Islamic Coalition Party, referring to the various views amongst Iran’s Reformists, and that they have written a letter to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in order to prepare the way for former President Mohammad Khatami to run in the June 2013 presidential election.

Moreover, Badamchian has claimed that the letter in question was delivered to the Supreme Leader by Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, the Chairman of the Expediency Discernment Council.

In other news

Bashgah-e khabarnegaran, reports  the comments of another prominent figure on the traditional right and the Chairman of the Front for the Disciples of the Line of the Imam and Leader, Habibollah Asgarowladi, in the course of a press conference made a number of controversial comments pertaining to the opposition leaders of the Green Movement, Mir Hossein Mousavi and Hojjat al-Islam Mehdi Karroubi.

Asgarowladi said, “Mousavi and Karroubi must not be easily lost because these people are not of the “sedition” [i.e. the term used in Conservative circles regarding the 2009 post-electoral unrest]…I was a Minister in the Mousavi government and I don’t consider him of the sedition”.

Asgarowladi also stated that there has been no agreement thus far between his political front and the Endurance Front of the Islamic Revolution, which is close to hardline Ayatollah Mohammad Taqi Mesbah-Yazdi.

Furthermore, Asgarowladi recently in the lead article of the conservative daily Resalat speaking of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, the former Chief of Staff of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stated, “while considering the explicit statement of disagreement by the Supreme Leader to the presence of Mr. Mashaei in the government,I don’t consider the words the President used regarding Mashaei correct…If Mashaei becomes a [presidential] candidate there is no problem and this subject has no relation to any other [political] currents, because the Guardian Council determines the competency of candidates”.

Commander Mohammadreza Naqdi, the head of the Basij paramilitary organization engaged in an unprecedented attack on the family of Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, at a gathering commemorating the 9th Dey pro-government rallies of 2009, stating “someone who commits crimes and when it comes to the issue of posting bail, brings billions of tomans, cannot bring about reforms”.

Naqdi is clearly referring to Mehdi Hashemi, the son of Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, who posted bail for his release to the hefty sum of 10 billion tomans. A sum that has raised numerous eyebrows amongst sections of the political elite of the Islamic Republic.

Dr. Marzieh Vahid Dastjerdi, the only female Minister in the government and in the history of the Islamic Republic, has been fired as Minister of Health by President Ahmadinejad. Dr. Baqer Larijani, the younger brother of Majles Speaker Ali Larijani has also resigned from his position as President of Medical Sciences at the University of Tehran.

Ahmadinejad did not mention his former Minister by name or thank her for her service, and simply appointed Mohammad Hassan Tariqat Monfared, as the caretaker to the Ministry.

According to reports Dastjerdi had resisted pressure to fire Baqer Larijani and this is amongst the key reasons for her sacking. However her criticisms of the poor allocation of currency for vital medicines in the face of sanctions, where deemed to be a significant factor in her untimely dismissal.

Prominent MP for Tehran, Gholamali Haddad Adel, has said that news of Dastjerdi’s sacking “is not good” and given that Ahmadinejad’s second term is soon to come to a close, the incoming Minister will not have “an opportunity for change”.