Just eight days before inauguration, Ahmadinejad’s cabinet becomes illegal and requires a parliamentary vote of confidence to continue working.
During the past few days, Ahmadinejad has been unexpectedly replacing cabinet members. According to Fars News Agency, Mohammad Hossein Saffar Harandi, the Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance of Iran, resigned today bringing the number of changes in the cabinet to more than 50% of the members. According to article 136 of Iran’s Constitution, if more than half of the ministers change, the government is required to seek a fresh vote of confidence from the parliament.
WaPo provides more context:
Although Ahmadinejad has frequently replaced his cabinet members over the past four years, Sunday's firing and resignation were significant because both Intelligence Minister Gholam-Hossein Mohseni-Ejei and Culture Minister Mohammad Hossein Saffar Harandi are especially close to Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, analysts say. "All ministers are close to him," said Amir Mohebbian, a political analyst who shares Ahmadinejad's ideology but has been critical of his actions. "But these two are closer to the leader."
Taken together, the moves suggest deep unhappiness within Ahmadinejad's inner circle at a time when the government is still reeling from the impact of a weeks-long campaign by the opposition to overturn the results of June's disputed election.
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