Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Friday, September 18, 2015

Another Khomeini?

If the grandson of the first supreme leader enters politics, will it matter?

Assembly election heats up as Ayatollah Khomeini’s grandson indicates he will stand
Hassan Khomeini, the 43-year-old grandson of the founder of the Islamic Republic Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, has signalled he will run for the Assembly of Experts election in February. Despite a generally low political profile, Hassan Khomeini has expressed opposition to extremism and supported the nuclear agreement with world powers.

Khomeini and the president
He has previously rebuffed suggestions he might stand for the Assembly, an 88-seat clerical body that chooses and supervises Iran’s supreme leader… Khomeini’s candidature now could help boost a loose alliance of candidates supporting President Hassan Rouhani…

Khomeini teaches as a cleric in Qom, where he also heads the Institute for the Compilation and Publication of Imam Khomeini’s Works, which preserves the late leader’s writings…

Khomeini has repeatedly praised the nuclear agreement with world powers reached in July. “Society is happy with the government’s achievement on the nuclear issue, this success is due to the prudence of the government,” he said on 19 July.

He has also spoken out against any branch of the military taking a political role…

Nevertheless, Khomeini has maintained good relations with different political groups and is widely respected. This would make him a formidable candidate in an Experts Assembly election that is shaping up as broad battle between, on one side, candidates including Rafsanjani and Rouhani, and on the other side fundamentalists including Mesbah-Yazdi, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, the head of the Guardian Council and Ayatollah Mohammad Yazdi, the current chairman of the assembly…

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