Iranian Parliament Decides to Question Rouhani

Iranian Parliament Decides to Question Rouhani

Thursday, 8 February, 2018 - 06:45
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. AFP file photo
London - Adil Al-Salmi
A political crisis in Iran aggravated on Wednesday after deputies garnered the needed votes to question President Hassan Rouhani over the country’s economic and financial policies.

A total number of 76 members of Iran’s parliament have filed a request to grill Rouhani, although such step requires the vote of only 70 deputies out of the 290-member parliament.

There was no immediate information on when the parliamentary economic committee would kick off the questioning.  

Speaker Ali Larijani has already sent to the committee the request signed by MPs from the reformist and conservative movements concerning the economic situation in the country and the bankruptcy of financial institutions.

Rouhani’s allies reject the grilling of the president over economic and financial issues.

“The proposal to question the president is very important because since the Iranian revolution of 1979, Iranian presidents have been only questioned twice by parliament,” a journalist who is an expert in Iranian parliamentary affairs, Ehsan Mehrabi, told Asharq Al-Awsat on Wednesday.

He recalled that the first elected president, Abolhassan Banisadr, was interrogated by parliament before being dismissed from office in 1980. Also, former President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad was questioned by Iran’s Majlis.

In a related development, Iran's former president Mohammad Khatami called on his reformist movement to fight poverty and corruption in the country.

Despite supporting Rouhani, Khatami called on the president not to ignore popular demands.

Meanwhile, the Center for Strategic Studies, which operates as part of the Iranian president's office, published a survey prepared by a number of experts about demonstrations that took place in Iran last month.

According to the survey, 75 percent of respondents expressed dissatisfaction with the general situation in the country.

While 60 percent still believed there is a possibility to introduce reforms, 31 percent of respondents believed the opposite.

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