NewsSpecial WireIran’s chief nuclear negotiator denies resignation

Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator denies resignation

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Iran Focus: London, Jul. 03 – Iran’s secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) and chief nuclear negotiator, Hassan Rowhani, denied through an unnamed official this afternoon earlier reports today that he was stepping down from his appointed posts. Iran Focus

London, Jul. 03 – Iran’s secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) and chief nuclear negotiator, Hassan Rowhani, denied through an unnamed official this afternoon earlier reports today that he was stepping down from his appointed posts.

Iran’s state-run Mehr news agency quoted an unnamed official as saying, “Such news [of Rowhani’s resignation”> have no truth in them. The work of people like Dr. Rowhani goes beyond individual tastes and the tasks entrusted to them must be fulfilled”.

The SNSC official noted that Rowhani’s positions in the past two decades have not been influenced by the different administrations.

“At this very special time when the enemies of the Islamic Revolution are waging a psychological war against the President-elect and are trying to have a negative impact on Iran’s international relations, in a bid to force their views on our country, the media are expected to apply the necessary caution in publishing such news”.

The official was alluding to the widely reported allegations concerning Ahmadinejad’s involvement in the 1979 hostage crisis in Iran and his participation in the assassination of prominent Iranian dissidents abroad.

Earlier today, ISNA, another state-run news agency, had reported that Rowhani was stepping down from his posts.

“Following the question of the possible resignation of the head of Iran’s nuclear negotiating team from the post of Secretary of Supreme National Security Council over the past few days, there are reports backing up the case of his resignation”, the news service stated.

Some analysts suspect that the sudden announcement of Rowhani’s resignation and the following denial reflect a heated confrontation behind the scenes as the ultra-conservative camp wrests control of the remaining levers of power from the hands of its rivals in the wake of its recent victory in the presidential elections.

“Rowhani is seen in the eyes of the ultra-conservative leaders who are behind Ahmadinejad as a negotiator who was willing to give away too much to the Europeans, even if the final decision rested in the hands of Supreme Leader [Ayatollah Ali”> Khamenei”, Masoud Zabeti, a London-based analyst for Iran Focus, said. “Ultimately, he will go, but even some ultra-conservatives think it might be a good idea to keep him for some time, to avoid a quick showdown with the Europeans”.

Rowhani is a close ally of former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. A likely successor could be Hossein Moussavian, who belongs to the ultra-conservative camp and serves as Rowhani’s deputy in the nuclear negotiations team.

“But there is an obvious problem with Moussavian right now”, Zabeti said. “He has already been exposed as one of the militant Islamists who seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran. After the controversy over Ahmadinejad, the ruling clerics cannot afford to have the dark past of another one of their top officials come under media spotlight”.

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