Ayatollah Rafsanjani retains leadership of Expediency Council
Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has been reappointed as the head of Iran’s Expediency Council by the order of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.
The reappointment of Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani was significant in view of the widespread attacks against the Hashemi family in the past two years. Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani was removed from his position as the head of the Assembly of Experts after the controversial presidential elections of 2009 because he was seen as supporting the opponents of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who in effect had been endorsed by the Supreme Leader.
Ayatollah Khamenei implicitly attacked Hashemi Rafsanjani in the aftermath of the election protests for refusing to condemn the street demonstrations and for calling for a recount.
Ayatollah Rafsanjani’s daughter, Faezeh Rafsanjani, has been arrested and prosecuted for taking part in the election protests.
Ayatollah Khamenei also removed opposition leader MirHosein Mousavi from the Expediency Council.
Mousavi, who was Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's opponent in the 2009 presidential election, has been under house arrest with his wife Zahra Rahnavard since February of 2011.
He was appointed to the Expediency Council by the late leader of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Khomeini, and had been an official member of this government body since 1988.
The Expediency Council was established in 1988 by Ayatollah Khomeini to resolve differences between the Guardian Council and Parliament, and it has been chaired by Ayatollah Rafsanjani ever since.