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Khamanei Assistant: Iran is not a Role Model | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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In this Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012 file photo, an Iranian vendor sells pistachio in Tehran’s old main bazaar. AP Photo/Vahid Salemi

London-The assistant of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei said on Wednesday that the Iranian regime has regressed over the past 37 years, adding that it could no longer pretend to be a role model to other countries.

Ali Akbar Natiq Nouri, who also serves as head of the Supreme Leader’s Special Inspection Office, accused Iran’s judicial authority of corruption, questioning whether the Judiciary was abiding by the principles of Islam.

Iran’s Jamaran news website quoted Nouri as saying that statistics published by the Iranian government on addiction, homelessness and bribery have been used by “enemies” to criticize the regime.

Nouri’s comments were made following corruption reports that spread in the country earlier in June.

The corruption scandal was rocked by a series of exposed summaries of bank accounts belonging to high-ranking officials being circulated online. Many senior executive officials employed at the institution responsible for managing state insurance and finances were being paid fifty times over the minimum wage set for government employees.

The revelations, which have sparked widespread anger, continued to dominate front pages across the country, and even led to the resignation of the head of the state insurance regulator, Mohammad Ebrahim Amin.

For his part, the head of Iran’s judicial branch, Sadeq Larijani, replied to Nouri’s comments, saying that those who criticize the regime after 37 years had been regime officials and suddenly took an opposition role. Larijani was implicitly pointing at Nouri, who served as parliament speaker from 1992 until 2000.

Nouri’s remarks came at a time when Iranian officials have been reiterating their country’s commitment to become a unique role model that other countries should follow.

This is the second warning made by an Iranian official over Iran’s regime regression this year. In August 2015, commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Mohammed Ali Jaafari said that the Iranian regime did not achieve any progress in its third decade and warned against the collapse of the country’s moral and cultural standards.

During a television interview earlier this month, Larijani admitted the removal of 50 judges in 2015 for their involvement in corruption cases.

Last week, Ali Khamenei commented on the exorbitant salary scandal, saying that the case had been overstated. He added that the wave of criticism was part of a campaign on the Iranian regime’s principles.

Khamenei was addressing Iranian President Hassan Rouhani during an Iftar banquet.

For its part, the IRGC rejected claims that its members were receiving very high salaries. IRGC spokesperson Ramadan Sherif expressed his concern over criticism campaigns launched against the Iranian regime.

It is noteworthy that the majority of Iranian officials who commented on the exorbitant salary scandal said they were worried about the “regime’s reputation.”