Iran Parliament Impeaches Finance Minister

Iran Parliament Impeaches Finance Minister

Sunday, 26 August, 2018 - 09:45
The Iranian parliament impeaches the minister of finance. (Reuters)
Asharq Al-Awsat
The Iranian parliament impeached on Sunday Finance Minister Masoud Karbasian amid a sharp fall in the rial currency and a deterioration in the economic situation.

Karbasian lost the vote of confidence, which was carried live on state radio, by 137 votes to 121, with two abstentions.

He is the second minister in President Hassan Rouhani's cabinet to be impeached this month, following the removal of Labor Minister Ali Rabiei on August 8.

Iran has struggled with high rates of inflation and joblessness for years, despite a slight improvement following the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

Critics of Rouhani's government say it squandered the opportunities presented by the nuclear deal, which now looks increasingly moribund after the US pulled out of the agreement in May and began reintroducing sanctions.

"Inefficiency and lack of planning have nothing to do with sanctions," said one conservative MP, Abbas Payizadeh, in a speech ahead of the vote.

"Wrong decisions have harmed the people and led to individuals looting public assets," he added.

Protests linked to the tough economic situation in the country began last December, spreading to more than 80 cities and towns and resulting in 25 deaths.

Sporadic protests, led by truck drivers, farmers and merchants in Tehran’s bazaar, have continued regularly since then and have occasionally resulted in violent confrontations with security forces.

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