Below is a summary of the opening remarks by the head of the Assembly of Experts Council in Iran, Ayatollah Rafsanjani as he opened the session on Tuesday. The Experts Council is a deliberative body of 86 Mujtahids (Islamic scholars) that is charged with electing and removing the Supreme Leader of Iran and supervising his activities. In his remarks, he warns of a current toward dictatorship and appeals to all leaders to abide by the law and prevent discord and disenfranchisement of the people.
The ratifications of the Majlis, the Guardian Council and the Expediency Council must be implemented, said Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani at the opening session of the Assembly of Experts on Tuesday.
Rafsanjani also said the Supreme Leader’s remarks about the implementation of Article 44 and the 20-Year Outlook Plan – which have been drawn up by the Expediency Council and endorsed by the Supreme Leader – must be regarded “above law”.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Rafsanjani said disrespect to law will lead to “dictatorship”.
“Disregard to law, means dictatorship,” said Rafsanjani who is both the chairman of the Expediency Council and the Assembly of Experts.
The former president went on to say that the current headstrong movements in the country are like a “poison”, urging all to abide by the law to prevent discord among the nation.
Rafsanjani also warned that some persons seek to deal a blow to the core of the Islamic system.
He said some misinterpret the Leader’s slogan of “maximum attraction and minimum alienation”, a reference to the stated policy of the Islamic Republic system to win the hearts and minds of people as much as possible and avoiding disenfranchise them to the extent possible.
Moreover, Rafsanjani cited Velayat-e-Faqih (rule of supreme jurisprudence) and clerics as main assets to the country that have to be highly valued.
Rafsanjani also warned officials not to consider sanctions against the country as a “joke”.
“During the years after the revolution, we have never had so many sanctions and I urge all officials to take them seriously and not as jokes,” he stated.
Ayatollah Rafsanjani expressed hope that Iran will “weather the storm of crisis” if it utilizes its potential in a proper way.