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A Year Later: Suppression Continues in Iran

Sadeq Mahsouli

Born: 1959

Hometown: Orumieh

Position: Minister of the Interior and Minister of Labor

“Many of the rioters were in contact with America, CIA and the MKO and are being fed by their financial resources.”





Known as the “Billionaire General” for using his contacts in the Revolutionary Guards to build a construction and oil-trading fortune, Sadeq Mahsouli was nominated to be Minister of Oil in November 2008 before his wealth and lack of experience forced a different choice. His nomination for Interior minister was only narrowly approved by the Majlis as he had been Ahmedinajad’s campaign manager and would be in charge of overseeing future elections as Interior Minister.

His announcement that Ahmedinajad had won 24 million votes, more than anyone in the country’s history, sparked allegations of vote-rigging and massive protests following the June 12, 2009 election. As Minister of the Interior, Mahsouli was responsible for counting votes, the police action against protesters, as well as the denial of permits for opposition rallies. On June 17, 2009, conservative Speaker of the Majlis Ali Larijani blamed Mahsouli for attacks on civilians and students, stating “[t]he Interior Minister is responsible and should be accountable for the events.”

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Reports, Right to Protest, Imprisonment