Iranian lawmakers have called on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to end an eight-day boycott and accept the supreme leader’s decision to reinstate the intelligence minister, Shargh daily reported Saturday.
More than 216 conservatives out of the parliament’s 290 MPs wrote a letter to Ahmadinejad after an “extraordinary” meeting Thursday, urging him to accept the reinstatement of Heydar Moslehi, the report said quoting Tehran MP Reza Akrami.
“You are expected to adhere to the supreme leader (Ayatollah Ali Khamenei) and put an end to that which our enemies are taking advantage of,” the lawmakers wrote.
The all-powerful Khamenei reinstated Moslehi despite Ahmadinejad having reportedly forced his resignation, only minutes after it was made public on April 17.
The interference sparked a row within the regime’s leadership, leading to Ahmadinejad’s withdrawal from public view as well as cabinet meetings since April 22, and the cancellation of a visit to Qom, the Shiite clerical city.
The absence is unusual for the hardline president, who is ubiquitous in the media and is also known for his near daily public appearances and speeches.
The crisis seems to have been aggravated by accusations from ultra-conservatives that Ahmadinejad’s close aide and chief of staff, Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, was the one who forced Moslehi’s ouster.
Ahmadinejad’s opponents have rallied against Mashaie, whom the president has staunchly defended, accusing him of leading a “current of deviation” aimed at destroying the Islamic regime.
But Khamenei on Saturday urged state officials to refrain from actions which would give excuse to “the enemy and create a tumult” for the country, in remarks broadcast by state television.
“(When) a tiny lack of coordination appears, the country is harmed,” he said.
“If the lack of coordination is wide and the enemies are made aware of them, (the enemies) create an uproar. They revel. They rejoice when an atmosphere of challenge and confrontation comes to light” in the country.
As official media continue their blackout on the crisis, Ahmadinejad’s chief media adviser, Ali Akbar Javanfekr, wrote on his website Friday that the president was very “concerned” that if he bowed to pressure, his “achievements” would be lost.
But he also stated Ahmadinejad would “eventually” return to work and put the issue behind him. Khaleej Times