Iran hardliners abandon attempt to impeach President Hassan Rouhani

The motion was dropped after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei expressed support for the government

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. AFP
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. AFP

Iranian parliamentarians abandoned their attempt to impeach President Hassan Rouhani, Tasnim news agency reported on Wednesday, marking the end of a move sparked by growing economic hardship.

A group of about 10 who sought to impeach the president and rally other members of the 290-seat body to their side backed down, the agency said.

One MP quoted by Tasnim said the motion was dropped after Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the highest authority in the country, voiced his support for the government.

Iranians’ daily struggle to make ends meet has become harder since the reimposition of US sanctions in 2018, and the economy has been further damaged by rising inflation, growing unemployment, a slump in the rial and the coronavirus crisis.

First elected in a landslide in 2013 and re-elected in 2017, Mr Rouhani opened the door to diplomacy with six major powers that led to a 2015 nuclear deal, under which Iran agreed to curb its sensitive work in return for the easing of sanctions.

Hardliners opposed to the West were always lukewarm about the agreement, and they criticised Mr Rouhani when President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the deal.

Updated: July 15, 2020 10:24 PM

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