Thursday , February 25 2021

If Iranian Khamenei has to step down, who will replace him?



In the past six years, since Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei underwent prostate surgery, there has been much speculation about who could replace the 81-year-old if he dies or becomes sick too sick to continue to rule. , a reporter for an Iranian dissident said Khamenei may have handed over power to his son, Mojtaba Hosseini Khamenei, 51, amid concerns over his deteriorating health. Could this be a change in the Iranian regime for the first time since 1989? If so, who is most likely to take over from Khamenei permanently? First, Ali Khamenei has endured many rounds of speculation that his poor health has wiped him out – since 2014. Similarly, there have been many periods of speculation in the past year. about the much younger North Korean leader Kim Jong-un falling ill, including the fact that he is no longer alive. But then he would be back in public in days or weeks. It is possible that at least Khamenei is sick, but the lesson from his and Kim’s past is that until the supreme leader is dead, he cannot be counted.

If Khamenei finally retreats, Mojtaba is certainly a candidate. He had considerable power in his father’s circles and in an effort to keep the various main centers of power in the country divided, and perhaps even gain the support of the powerful Corps of Guardians of the Islamic Revolution, a state within the Islamic Republic. as a hardliner regarding the West, however, it is very unlikely to be favored by that country’s Assembly of Experts, dominated by Ayatollahs with religious knowledge. Mojtaba has no such knowledge.
Under the Iranian constitution, the Ayatollahs choose a successor, and Khamenei is not a king who can simply hand over the role to his son. The head of the Iranian judiciary, Ebrahim Raisi, would probably be a favorite of the Ayatollahs. In August 2019, there was a surge in speculation about Raisi emerging as the leading candidate to succeed Khamenei, Iranian expert Raz Zimmt wrote. Khamenei’s successor as opposed to some of the more reform-minded candidates. Zimmt said that since Raisi’s appointment as chief of justice in March 2019, the conservative clergyman has expanded his efforts to change the legal system, improve his public image and increase media coverage.It would always be important for someone like Raisi to find shortlisted to replace the eight-year-old leader, but the new marketing efforts and the fact that Khamenei openly supports these efforts become even more important when viewed in light of Raisi’s defeat to President Hassan Rouhani in the May 2017 presidential election by the number of votes 23-16 million. Khamenei’s message seems clear: he doesn’t care that Raisi lost to Rouhani: He wants Raisi as his successor or at least wants to continue promoting him as a leading figure. Zimmt noted that “it is too early to judge Raisi’s chances of winning the battle for succession in Iran, which will necessarily be influenced by the timing of Khamenei’s departure from the political map.” However, he added, “Raisi’s closeness to the supreme leader; his experience in judicial authorities; his term as chairman of the Astan Quds Razavi Foundation and of the Imam Reza Temple in the city of Mashhad; and his tough stance – along with increasing efforts to improve his public standing – make him a leading candidate at this stage of the battle for succession. “
RAISI was born in December 1960 in the city of Mashhad, and from the beginning of the 1980s he held a number of positions in the justice system, including a prosecutor in Tehran, head of the General Inspection of the Judiciary, first deputy president of the court and lawyer – general of Iran. in 2016, he was appointed by the Supreme Leader the president of the Astan Quds Razavi Foundation in Mashhad, which Zimmt wrote is a powerful foundation that controls substantial Islamic funds, a wide range of assets and large budgets. Raisi is a member of the Expert Council and deputy chairman of the Assembly of Experts, which is responsible for overseeing the activities of the Supreme Leader, appointing his successor, and even possibly removing him from office if found unable to continue Shortly after he became head of justice Raisi announced changes including achieving greater efficiency. Zimmt said that Raisi placed the war on corruption high in his for example, dismissing dozens of judges who were accused of involvement in corruption, and also announced a reduction in the number of bank accounts he had in his possession and the issuing of annual reports, which seemed to be an attempt to distinguish himself from his predecessor. Sadeq Larijani, who allegedly had over 60 bank accounts with the funds of citizens who had cases in the courts, wrote Zimmt. Raisi also worked to increase his presence in the media and improve his public image, especially after losing in the Rouhani elections. emerged “as a blunt, uncharacteristic candidate who found it difficult to compensate for his lack of political experience,” said Zimmt.
In JUNE 2019, R. Raisi posted an unusual post on his Instagram account urging Iranians to contact him through his personal social media accounts to propose necessary improvements to the judicial system. Zimmt wrote that “this initiative was warmly welcomed, especially by – reform the media, which expressed hope that it would re-examine the existing policy of blocking social networks and strengthen public confidence in the judiciary, similarly in the same month the Iranian media released photos Raisi travels to work in the Tehran subway, apparently to strengthen his image as leading a simple and modest lifestyle. He gave an extensive media interview during Judiciary Week. Raisi had problems with the Iranian reform camp because of his involvement in the mass executions of political prisoners in 1988, Zimmt said. President Rouhani himself mentioned Raisi’s past, the Iranian expert noted. when in one of his election speeches he stated that Iranian citizens no longer want someone who spent 38 years in prison and execution to counter this, Zimmt said Raisi had made a series of statements regarding the improvement of the status of women in the country. Khamenei, Raisi was a public skeptic of the 2015 nuclear deal and is strongly allied with the hard-line Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
OTHER NAMES that were raised with Raisi and Mojtaba include Rouhani and Raisi’s predecessor in charge of the judiciary, Sadeq Larijani. While Rouhani is a firm member of the establishment, he is seen as more open to the West than Khamenei or Raisi and more likely to mitigate crises and confrontations than worsen them, but Rouhani has lost face in the last two years since Trump. the administration withdrew from the nuclear deal. He would have had a better chance if Khamenei recovered and Rouhani made a new deal with the upcoming Biden administration. Zimmt wrote in 2019 that a member of the Assembly of Experts, senior cleric Mohsen Araki, confirmed in an interview with the Fars news agency that a three-man committee was keeping a secret list of potential candidates for Khamenei’s successor should it suddenly become necessary to replace the aging leader after his 30-year-old reign. The list could also include ayatollah or IRGC black horse candidates. So part of the question would be whether Iran is still ruled mostly by clerics, or whether the IRGC security apparatus is carrying out some sort of coup d’état and ushers the country into a true era of police states. Of course, Khamenei may take down all rumors in the coming days or weeks, but at 81, speculation will continue.




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