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In Iran, Part of the Revolution Passes On

Jan 8, 2017 | 20:23 GMT
In Iran, Part of the Revolution Passes On
The death of former President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (C) signals a changing of the guard in Iran.
(BEHROUZ MEHRI/AFP/Getty Images)

Former Iranian President Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, who ruled from 1989 to 1997, passed away on Jan. 8 at the age of 82. For the past four decades, Rafsanjani has been one of the most powerful figures in Iranian politics, surpassed only by Iran's first leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, and current Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. His passing comes at a critical time in Iranian politics as the country prepares for an important presidential election in May. With former reformist President Mohammed Khatami under a media ban and other notable reformist leaders such as Mehdi Karroubi under house arrest, Rafsanjani emerged in recent years as the ideological leader of the country's more moderate camp. Moreover, he was able to challenge the Iranian political establishment's views in ways no one else could, in part because he helped to create it as one of the Islamic Republic's founding fathers. Iran's moderate leaders will...

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