Mohammadreza Naghdi

Basij commander Mohammadreza Naghdi says while the Supreme Leader is free to issue any directive, there is no reason to believe that he will step forward to overturn the Guardian Council’s decision to disqualify certain presidential candidates.

Naghdi said: “Currently there are no grounds for governmental decree; of course, the Supreme Leader has absolute discretion to do as his wishes, and whatever he decides, we will abide by it.”

Certain groups in government have made some effort to overturn the Guardian Council’s decision to disqualify Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani from the presidential race.

Naghdi claimed these efforts were being spearheaded by the country’s enemies to create discontent but the Iranian people failed to take the bait, choosing instead to accept the Guardian Council’s decision with “commendable tolerance.”

Many top establishment figures have spoken out against the disqualification of Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, who had long been the second most powerful figure in the Islamic Republic, but Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has remained silent and refused to speak in his favour.