Iran Prepares for Potential Change in Judiciary

02/20/2019 Iran (International Christian Concern) – Momentum continues to build that Ebrahim Raeesi will likely be appointed as Iran’s next Head of the Judiciary this upcoming summer. A former presidential candidate, a participant in Iran’s 1988 death commissions, and a custodian of Iran’s holiest shrine, his candidacy for this position is widely considered as a signal which would kill any hope for the respect of human rights in Iran’s judiciary.

Raeesi maintains close connections to Iran’s current Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei. This has enabled him to rise quickly through the ranks. Among other positions, he has worked as the prosecutor general of Tehran, the first deputy Chief Justice of Iran, the attorney general of Iran, and is also a member of the Assembly of Experts (which monitors the Supreme Leader).

Through these types of positions, Raeesi has maintained a significant amount of influence over the deteriorating situation of human rights in Iran. Because of his previous record, there is significant concerns that his appointment as head of judiciary would close the door to any positive developments on human rights.

Although he has changed career titles several times, one theme remains constant. He is a cleric, from the same seminary as the Supreme Leader, and each of the positions he has held included the responsibility to guard against ideologies which “threaten” the Iran’s Islamic theocracy. If appointed as Head of the Judiciary, it can be certain that Iran’s Christians will continue to be targeted. It is highly likely that their situation will only continue to worsen if Raeesi is indeed appointed.

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