Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dismissed his foreign minister, Manouchehr Mottaki while the FM was on a diplomatic trip abroad.
In a letter, Ahmadinejad thanked Mottaki for his years of service and appointed Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran’s Atomic Agency as the interim head of the foreign ministry.
Manouchehr Mottaki has served as foreign minister in Ahmadinejad government for over five years and there have been no official statements regarding the reason for his dismissal.
There have been however tensions between Mottaki and head of the government in the past, over Ahmadinejad’s appointment of ambassadors and special envoys to various countries abroad.
The tensions finally demanded the intervention of the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei who advised against disunity in the actions of the foreign ministry and forced Ahmadinejad to withdraw his appointees and announce that they are in effect his own special advisors in foreign affairs.
Reformist websites have suggested that Mottaki was critical of Ahmadinejad’s foreign policy and his dismissal is due to his failure to align himself with Ahmadinejad’s decisions.
Mottaki is also a close ally of the head of Iranian parliament, Ali Larijani who has been in dispute with Ahmadinejad over the limits of the parliament’s powers in reference to the executive branch.
A number of prominent Iranian MPs have announced that they are taking legal action against Mahmoud Ahmaidnejad for his disregard of the parliament and its approved legislation.