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Iran's Ahmadinejad sacks Foreign Minister Mottaki

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has dismissed his longstanding Foreign Minister Manoucher Mottaki who is currently on a visit to Senegal.

A brief presidential order issued on Monday appointed atomic energy chief, Ali Akbar Salehi as the acting Foreign Minister.

Analysts see the move as a consolidation of presidential power. There has been for long wide speculation in Tehran political circles that Mr. Ahmadinejad had so far been unable to divest Mr. Mottaki from his Foreign Ministry portfolio on account of the protection he had received from Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Well acquainted with India, Mr. Mottaki is a Bangalore University graduate.

Iran's state-run Press TV ran Mr. Ahmadinejad's letter appointing Mr. Salehi as the acting Foreign Minister. “Considering your commitment, knowledge, and valued expertise, and in accordance with Article 135 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and based on this directive you are appointed as acting foreign minister,” a copy of the directive read. Mr. Salehi's appointment precedes the proposed Istanbul meeting of Iran with the six global powers next month where the Iranian nuclear issue is expected to be discussed. In a separate letter, Mr. Ahmadinejad expressed gratitude to Mr. Mottaki for his services during his tenure. “Herby I thank you for your services and efforts during your tenure in the Foreign Ministry,” read the letter.

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Printable version | Jul 14, 2020 11:36:33 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Irans-Ahmadinejad-sacks-Foreign-Minister-Mottaki/article15591906.ece

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