Iran’s parliament move to question President Rouhani over country’s economic woes

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Iran’s lawmakers plan to summon President Hassan Rouhani for questioning over a range of issues including the country’s economic turmoil, state media reported on Monday.

A motion to question Rouhani was signed by more than 200 lawmakers and handed to the presiding board of the 290-seat parliament, the semi-official Tasnim news agency reported.

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The lawmakers have questions for Rouhani on a range of issues, including the devaluation of the national currency, the turmoil in the housing and car markets, inflation, the government’s failure to support businesses impacted by the coronavirus, and the implementation of the Iran nuclear deal.

The Iranian economy has been hit hard since President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic in 2018.

Last month, Iran’s rial currency dropped to its lowest value ever against the dollar.

Lawmakers also plan to ask Rouhani about the government’s “strategic mistake that allowed the US to withdraw from the [nuclear] agreement without any costs,” Tasnim said.

On Sunday, lawmakers interrupted Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif several times and called him a “liar” during his first address to the new parliament.

Defending himself against shouts of “liar,” Zarif said that Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei considers him “honest” and “brave.”

Briefing the parliament on Iran’s foreign policies, Zarif said he coordinated regional matters with slain Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commander Qassem Soleimani on a weekly basis.

The Iranian parliament has no say in the country’s foreign policies or nuclear program, both of which are determined by Khamenei.

Iran’s foreign policy is based around expanding its influence in the region using its vast network of proxies known as the “resistance axis.”

Some of the militias supported by Iran include the Houthi militia in Yemen, Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas and the Islamic Jihad Movement in Gaza, and dozens of other militias in Syria and Iraq.

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