Iran economy minister survives impeachment vote

02 November 2011

141 parliamentarians voted to support Hosseini

Iran’s Economy Minister Shamsoddin Hosseini has survived an impeachment vote linked to a $2.8bn financial scandal.

On 23 October, the Iranian parliament approved a decision to begin the impeachment process against Hosseini (MEED 24:10:11).

Hosseini was accused of failing to take action over the scandal. Of the 244 parliamentarians, 141 voted to retain Hosseini while 93 voted against with the remaining 10 abstaining. Parliament speaker, Ali Larijani said an apology by Hosseini and his promise to prevent future scandals had helped win support.

The financial scandal involves a businessman who allegedly forged letters of credit from Bank Saderat and gave them to seven other banks. Bank Saderat is partially owned by the government. The businessman then used the letters of credit to fund 40 companies while he tried to buy a state-owned steel factory with the president’s support as part of the national privatisation plan.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is also due to face parliament to answer questions about the scandal.

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