[QODLink]
Middle East
Iran appoints new interior minister
Critics argue that the president is using the post as support before 2009 elections.
Last Modified: 18 Nov 2008 11:13 GMT
Ahmadinejad gestures in support of his nominee [AFP]

Iran has picked an ally of the country's president to be the next interior minister.

Sadeq Mahsouli was voted in by a small majority of parliament on Tuesday, replacing Ali Kordan who was sacked for having a fake university degree.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the president, had nominated Mahsouli for the job.

He is a veteran from the elite Revolutionary Guards, a former election campaign manager for Ahmadinejad and presently one of his advisers.

Ali Larijani, the parliament speaker, said: "Out of 273 deputies who received ballots to take part in the vote of confidence, 138 voted for him, 112 rejected his nomination. We have 20 abstentions and three did not take part at all."

Mahsouli had previously been nominated for oil minister, but he withdrew after being criticised for his lack of experience.

Critics argue that Ahmadinejad chose Mahsouli in order to strengthen his position ahead of presidential elections in June next year, a claim Mahsouli denied.

"The issue of me being in Mr Ahmadinejad's [election] campaign group is not true," he said. "And I have never received a single rial in loans either from a public sector or a private sector bank."

The interior ministry is in charge of organising elections.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
Anti-government secrecy organisation struggling for relevance without Julian Assange at the helm.
After decades of overfishing, Japan is taking aim at increasing the number of bluefin tuna in the ocean.
Chinese scientists are designing a particle-smashing collider so massive it could encircle a city.
Critics say the government is going full-steam ahead on economic recovery at the expense of human rights.
Spirits are high in Scotland's 'Whisky Capital of the World' with one distillery thirsty for independence.
join our mailing list