Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s media adviser has criticized the Tehran Prosecutor for giving tacit approval to those who threaten members of the administration by remaining silent in the face of their “illegal actions.”
Ali Akbar Javanfekr’s was referring to statements uttered by a Tehran eulogist, who said last week: “Whoever kills Mashai [the president’s chief of staff Esfandiar Mashai], I will pay them.”
Javanfekr told the Etemad daily that reacting to such statements is “not the responsibility of the administration,” but rather it is up to the Prosecutor to pursue it.
Tehran Prosecutor, Abbas Jafari Dowlatabadi had said that Esfandiar Mashai could file a complaint against the panegyrist, but Javanfekr insisted it is the duty of the prosecutor to take action.
Javanfekr, who is also the head of the state news agency IRNA, added: “The administration needs to await the response of the judiciary on this matter, because Mr. Arzi’s statements and the murder threats against government officials have undoubtedly disturbed the public, and we need to wait and see what Tehran’s Prosecutor will do as the public’s representative in this case.”
Javanfekr criticized the prosecutor’s indifference in the case and called upon him to act immediately.
By remaining "silent," he added, the judiciary is “opening the arena to the chaos that is becoming more and more common these days.”
The eulogist Mansour Arzi recently made reference to Esfandiar Rahim Mashai, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s chief of staff, saying: “Right now they have hidden him. The guys will find him and kill him…I said whoever kills him, I will pay them. As God is my witness, and this is not something I am just saying now…these people are dangerous; if they take power, you cannot imagine what they will do to the religious beliefs of young people.”
Esfandiar Rahim Mashai has been severely criticized by conservative members of the establishment in recent months. He is accused of leading a “deviant current” within the government aimed at “weakening Islam, the clergy and the supreme leadership.”
In the past two months, several Mashai allies have been arrested, and hardliners have called for Mashai to also be arrested.
The president’s chief of staff has avoided recent cabinet meetings in view of the growing criticism against him.