Iranian Parliament Speaker: Khatami Swearing-in Scheduled for Tuesday
The inauguration of Iranian President Mohammad Khatami, initially scheduled for Sunday but postponed on supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's orders, will take place on Tuesday, according to Parliament Speaker Mehdi Karubi.
"The ceremony will be held Tuesday in a public session," Karubi said Sunday, cited by AFP.
Khamenei said in a statement read out on television that the ceremony should not take place before a power struggle between reformists and conservatives, which has plunged the Islamic republic into a constitutional crisis, is settled.
Reformist lawmakers and the conservative judiciary have clashed over representation on Iran's powerful, conservative-controlled Guardians Council.
Parliament Saturday rejected candidates nominated by the judiciary to take seats on the council, which rules on constitutional matters.
"It is appropriate that the investiture ceremony in Parliament take place after the nomination of the members of the council," Khamenei said in the statement, which effectively blocks Khatami, who won a landslide victory in June 8 presidential elections, from forming a government.
The announcement created confusion among members of Parliament, said the New York Times, “with none who were reached by telephone willing to express their opinion about the matter or hazarding a guess as to how or when the conflict might be resolved.”
Several pro-reform MPs have been summoned to court in recent weeks to defend themselves against charges such as inflaming public opinion.
The Guardians Council, which supervises elections and examines laws to ensure their compatibility with the Constitution and Islamic precepts, is composed of 12 members.
Six are chosen by Khamenei, as supreme leader, and six by Parliament from a list prepared by the judiciary. Selections of half the council's positions are renewed every three years – Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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