January 25, 2012 Special Dispatch No. 4444

Former Iranian MP Emad Afrough in Rare Criticism of Khamenei on Iranian TV: 'A Country Cannot Be Governed by a Single Leader'

January 25, 2012
Iran | Special Dispatch No. 4444

Following are excerpts from an interview with former Iranian MP Emad Afrough, which aired on Channel 1 on January 15, 2012.

Emad Afrough: "The toxication of power, politics, and the economy has led to a growing gap [between the regime and the people]. I sense danger. If you ask me what the most important issue facing the country is, I would say that it is the growing gap between officialdom and the public. We are witnessing a gradual increase in the gap. The boiling, bustling civil and social life is growing further from officialdom. [...]

"As I said, I am not criticizing the legitimacy [of the regime]. I'd like to emphasize this. When you asked about theo-democracy, I said it has two aspects: the democratic and the religious aspects.

"I defend this very strongly. The rule must be in keeping with jurisprudence. I support this absolutely, because God alone has authority over human beings. That being the case, we should have a divine rule, laws, and precepts. [...]

"It is not necessary for us to act without any restraint, and to rule without any consideration for people's rights. Let's not forget that this is the ideology of Imam [Khomeini] and of the Leader [Khamenei] himself. When we talk about 'theo-democracy,' we are saying that the legality of the regime depends upon two factors: the legitimacy of the rulers and their acceptance. [...]

"Imam Khomeini said that if any of us wants to address questions to the leader, he has the right to do so, and the leader should respond to him. If he cannot respond, he is automatically dismissed.

"We should fix the [entire] mechanism, rather than placing further restrictions on a daily basis. [...]

"Imam Khomeini talked about three kinds of politics: bestial politics, Satanic politics, and divine and human politics. Bestial politics have to do with livelihood and security needs. Satanic politics have to do with ploys and deceit. As for divine and human politics - these are the politics that our prophets followed. Imam Ali followed them, Imam Khomeini followed them, and the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Khamenei is following them.

"But there must be guarantees. A country cannot be governed by a single leader. A single person cannot rule a country." [...]

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