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Ideologues Proposed to Fill Iranian Cabinet
Ahmadinejad hands in list of hardliners, unknowns to parliament for confirmation
Sadaf Farahani (internews)     Email Article  Print Article 
Published 2005-08-18 15:02 (KST)   
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad submitted to parliament Sunday a cabinet list of 21 proposed ministers, several of whom are known for their hard-line policies.

Ahmadi Nejad
©2005 S.Farahani
Only two men on the list have previously served as ministers: Mohammad Saeedi-Kia and Mohammad Rahmati. Most of the other nominees are inexperienced in such high-level posts and political watchers say it's possible that parliament will not confirm some of them.

Masoud Behnoud, an Iranian journalist, has compared this new and unknown cabinet with cabinets after two coup d'etats in Iran's history.

Before his election in June, Ahmadinejad promised to choose female ministers, but the new cabinet list includes no women.

Ahmadinejad chose the former head of a strict religious tribunal, Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejehei, to head the intelligence ministry. Mohseni-Ejehei is known for his activities against reformists, protesters and officials under former president Mohammad Khatami, such as former Minister of the Interior Abdollah Nouri and former Tehran mayor Gholam Hossein Karbaschi, and his role in their imprisonment. Reform-minded journalists in Iran regard Mohseni-Ejei as being opposed to media freedom.

Mohseni-Ejehei bit Isa Saharkhiz on the shoulder during a dispute.
©2005 ILNA
A year ago, at a monthly meeting of the official press committee, a government monitoring board that includes representatives of Iran's news media and its ruling clerics, Mohseni-Ejehei threw two sugar bowls at reformist magazine editor Isa Saharkhiz during a dispute and then bit him on the shoulder.

As foreign minister, Ahmadinejad named Manouchehr Mottaki, who has served as ambassador to Japan and Turkey. Mottaki is a proponent of Iran's nuclear program.

Mohammad Hossein Saffar-Harandi, a military graduate and former deputy commander of the army is proposed as culture and Islamic guidance minister, who will oversee the arts and media. Saffar-Harandi is the former chief of the Kayhan newspaper, an ultra-conservative daily.

The complete list of nominated ministers includes:

- Education: Ali Akbar Ashari
- Intelligence: Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejehei
- Foreign Affairs: Manouchehr Mottaki
- Commerce: Masoud Mirkazemi
- Health: Kamran Bagheri Lankarani
- Economy: Davoud Danesh Jafari
- Telecommunications: Mohammad Soleimani
- Agricultural Jihad: Mohammad Reza Eskandari
- Industry and Mines: Ali Reza Tahmasebi
- Defense: Mostafa Mohammad Najjar
- Welfare and Social Security: Mahdi Hashemi
- Culture and Islamic Guidance: Mohammad Hossein Saffar-Harandi
- Labor: Mohammad Jahromi
- Interior: Mostafa Pourmohammadi
- Housing: Mohammad Saeedi-Kia
- Cooperatives: Ali Reza Aliahmadi
- Science and Technology: Mohammad Madi Zahedi
- Oil: Ali Saeedlou
- Energy: Parviz Fattah
- Transportation: Mohammad Rahmati
- Justice: Jamal Karimirad
©2005 OhmyNews

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