These days, Ebrahim Raisi, his family and his relatives are criticized because of the custom appointments of his family, relatives and acquaintances in the Iranian government. The issue that has caused his companions to choose the title “Government of relatives and sons-in-law” for his collection.
The removal and installation of rentiers and families since the end of the “building government” and when Iran’s political atmosphere opened up a little to criticism and disclosure, first became a topic of discussion in political and security circles and then in the media. Over time, as the “circle of insiders” became narrower, some “gentlemen” and “good genes” entered and left it, and some remained in this circle.
Many believe that a look at the relations of kinship within the system of the Islamic Republic of Iran sheds light on the structure of the “Circle of a Thousand Families” that in the past 40 years, depending on their proximity to the “hard core of power”, they have gained a lot of position, opportunity and rents.
In this report, the names and records of a part of the family circle formed by the relatives of the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran and presidents are mentioned.
A thousand relatives of Ali Khamenei in the system
The family relationships of the current leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran and other influential political figures in Iran and the rent of their causal and relative relatives within the government have been the subject of various reports many times; The relationships regarding Ali Hosseini Khamenei can be briefly explained as follows:
Misbah al-Hoda Bagheri Kani, son-in-law of Ali Khamenei and husband of Hoda Khamenei, member of the Faculty of Islamic Studies and Management of Imam Sadiq University and Vice-Chancellor of this faculty and son of Mohammad Bagher Kani, member of the Board of Trustees of Imam Sadiq University and nephew of Mahdavi Kani, former chairman of the Council of Leadership Experts and brother of Ali Bagheri Kani is a current member of the nuclear negotiating team. The Kani family was the president and in charge of the affairs of Imam Sadiq University and many important government affairs for several decades, and for this reason, their relationship, especially in recent years, with Ahmad Alam Al-Hoda, the father-in-law of Ebrahim Raisi and Imam Juma of Mashhad, who was an effective member of the university’s board of trustees after Mahdavi kani’s death has been turned out.
Sosan Kharazi, daughter-in-law of Ali Khamenei and wife of Masoud Khamenei, daughter of Mohsen Kharazi, one of the senior clerics and sister of Sadegh Kharazi, former deputy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and collector of antiques, head of Hizb Naday Iranian, partner of Irvani, head of the Aazam Group and father-in-law of Ruhollah Khomeini’s grandson (nephew of Mohammad Khatami) and Mohammad Baqer Kharazi is one of the students of Misbah Yazdi and Secretary General of Iran’s Hezbollah and the nephew of Kamal Kharazi, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic.
Zahra Haddad-adel is Ali Khamenei’s daughter-in-law and Mojtaba Khamenei’s wife, daughter of Gholam Ali Haddad-adel, member of the Expediency Council, former Speaker of the Iran’s parliament and head of Persian Language and Literature Academy. Her mother, Tayyaba Mahrozadeh, is an adviser to the Minister of Science, an associate professor at Al-Zahra University, the director of the Women’s Studies Institute, and the founder of Farhang High School for Girls. Her brother, Farid al-Din Haddad-adel, a graduate of Imam Sadegh University, is the head of the Policy Council of Hamshahri magazine, a member of the Think Tank Council of Iranian national television Channel 3, a member of the board of directors of 12 companies and institutions, including Tehran Times, Mehr and Jam-e-Jam news agencies, and the cousin of Ali Foroughi, the head of Iranian national television Channel 3. Her uncle, Majid Haddad-adel, was the former head of Kermanshah Governorate. Zahra Haddad-Adel’s sister’s husband, Ruhollah Rahmani, was born in America and is Irancell’s general director of innovation and development.
Mustafa Khamenei is also married to the daughter of Azizullah Khoshbakht, one of the influential fundamentalist clerics who died in 2012 at the age of 86. Along with Misbah Yazdi, he was one of the influential fundamentalist figures and close to Mojtaba Khamenei and the IRGC.
Meysam Khamenei, the son-in-law of Mahmoud Lolachian, is one of the well-known merchants of Tehran market. His wife’s mother was Seyedah Ezzat Khamoushi, the founder of Narges Islamic and non-profit schools, who died due to Coronavirus.
Bushra, the other daughter of Ali Khamenei, is also the wife of Mohammad Javad Mohammadi Golpayegani, the son of Mohammad Mohammadi Golpayegani, the head of the office of the leader of the Islamic Republic, who has played a serious role in many events of the last three decades, especially the suppression of the Baha’is and the confiscation of their property in Iran.
Among the relatives of Ali Khamenei’s wife, Mrs Khojasteh, only Hassan Khojesteh Bagherzadeh is known, and the status of his other relatives has not been clarified anywhere, and he himself rarely appears in social circles, and there is no picture of him available. Hassan Khojasteh was previously the deputy head of sound and monitoring and programming of radio and television, and then he became the vice president of the Asia and Pacific Radio and Television Union, and he was removed from government positions during a period suspected of spying for Israel.
Among the brothers of Ali Khamenei, his elder brother Mohammad is one of the drafters of the draft constitution, who was formerly a member of the leadership experts and has a history of representing the parliament, and is currently the head of IranShenasi and Hikmat Sadra foundations. Hadi, the other brother of the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a well-known political figure who has been a member of parliament for several terms, and his political line is different from that of Ali Khamenei. Khamenei’s other brother is in charge of the oil ministry’s investigation commissions. There is no information about the activities of the family members and children and relatives of the brothers of the leader of the Islamic Republic.
The network of influential relatives from Ruhollah Khomeini’s family to Hashemi and Khatami
The “network of influential relatives” and positions in the Islamic government are not limited to the office of the current leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Seyyed Mohammad Khatami’s family relationship is the result of the union of the Hashemian and Sadouqi families in Rafsanjan and Yazd. A relationship that placed one in the position of paternal uncle and the other in the position of maternal uncle in the Hashemian family. The marriage of Hashemi’s daughters with Lahoti’s sons and the presence of Faezeh Hashemi in the Kargazaran Party and Fatemeh Hashemi in the Moderation and Development Party is another part of the continuity of these relationships and positions within the system.
The presidency of Mohammad Hashemi, the brother of Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani on the Islamic Republic Radio, the political presence of Mohsen Hashemi, his eldest son in the positions of the head of the presidential office and the head of the office of the head of the expediency assessment, the head of the inspection of the presidential institution and the head of the Tehran city council, Yasser Hashemi Rafsanjani’s activity in Expediency Council and Islamic Azad University and the presence of Mehdi Hashemi as the head of the Fuel Optimization Organization and responsible for Hashemi’s propaganda campaign in the 9th term of the presidential election is another part of the family relations, the second most influential figure of the system after the current leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran until his death, which until now is turned on.
In the network of relatives, the marriage of Ahmad Khomeini and Mohammad Khatami with two cousins brought the families of Khomeini and Khatami closer together. Also, the marriage of Mohammadreza Khatami, the former vice-speaker of Iran’s parliament and Seyyed Mohammad Khatami’s brother, with Zahra Eshraqi, the granddaughter of Ruhollah Khomeini, and Shahabuddin Eshraqi, the head of Ruhollah Khomeini’s office, strengthened the foundation of this relationship.
The marriage of Yasser, the son of Ahmad Khomeini, with the daughter of Mohammad Sadr, the son of the cousin of Mohammad Khatami, broadened the relationship, and finally, the marriage of the granddaughters of Zahra Mostafavi, the daughter of Ruhollah Khomeini, with the son of Mohsen Rezaei and the son of Jalaluddin Taheri, the former imam of Isfahan, is another part of family relationships in the system.
The marriage of the daughters of Seyyed Hashem Rasool Mahalati, an important member of the leadership office of the Islamic Republic during the era of Ruhollah Khomeini and Ali Khamenei, and a professor at Imam Sadiq University, with Ali Akbar Natiq Nouri, the former speaker of the Iranian Parliament, Abbas Akhundi, the former housing minister of the Hashemi government and Rouhani, and Seyyed Mohammad Ali Shahidi Mahalati, The former head of the Shahid Foundation is one of the other family marriages within the system.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hassan Rouhani, the third generation of relatives and dependents of the Iranian regime
Among them, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hassan Rouhani are the only presidents who do not have family relations within the system, However, like other heads of the regime, after reaching power, they did not leave their families and close relatives without benefits from the table of the revolution, and the third generation of relatives and dependents of the regime entered the circle of insiders through them.
From the time of Yazdi’s presidency over the judiciary until today, as well as in constructive, clean-handed, moderate and anti-corruption governments, the most attention is paid to these family relations regarding the role of these relatives and dependents in corruption cases, from embezzlement and brokering to economic and political corruption, which is revealed every day.
Major corruption cases in the steel, pharmaceutical, automotive and parts industries, petrochemicals and oil, pension funds, banks and foreign exchange, Shahid Foundation, Astan Quds Razavi, Farman Imam Executive Headquarters, Mustazafan Foundation and Privatization Organization and introduction of hundreds of people to assume the position of CEO and The seat of the board of directors of state and private companies or the receipt of facilities, land and confiscated and state properties are each ended with a key that has the name of one of the children, relatives, friends, dependents and commissioned officials on the forehead.
In Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s government, which came into office with the slogan of fighting nepotism, in the first term of the presidency, Dawoud Ahmadinejad, his elder brother, was appointed to the position of the head of the special presidential inspection, and his sister, Parveen Ahmadinejad, became the deputy of the Presidential Women’s Center. Also, Masoud Zaribafan, the President’s brother-in-law, was elected as the Secretary of the Government Board at the beginning of his work. Mehdi Khorshidi Azad, Ahmadinejad’s son-in-law, became the co-secretary of the President’s Council of Advisors and the head of the National Standards Organization. Later, together with Dawoud Ahmadinejad, he exposed Hamid Beqaei and Esfandiar Rahim Mashai under the title of deviant movement.
It was said that Mehdi Ahmadinejad, the son of the president and the son-in-law of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, was also active in the inspection of the presidential institution without receiving a verdict to his name. Hamidreza Afrashete, Parvin Ahmadinejad’s son-in-law, became one of Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei’s close companions in the presidential office and the deputy of provincial affairs.
The government of moderation and hope of Rouhani, after the clean-handed government, with the corruption cases of “Jahangiri Currency”, “the corruption of the Farhangian reserve fund” which started from the previous government and continued in his government, “the corruption of car imports”, “the corruption of Haft Tape”, corruption “Kindship Brokering”, “Drug Imports”, “Busty Hills and Clark Townships” and “Eastern Holdings” are famous examples.
At the same time, widespread corruption and the appointment of rentiers and family members in large holdings such as Shasta, Shastan, Ghadir, Farman Imam Executive Headquarters Pharmaceutical Holding and Astan Quds Razavi Investment Holding, along with “Corruption of Iran Mall Market”, “Bank Ayandeh” and… The coordination of the official government and the shadow government (a collection of organizations and institutions under the leadership) surpassed all previous records.
The types of appointments that lead to corruption in governments and within the darkroom structure of the Islamic Republic of Iran can be divided as follows: “Appointment of first-degree relatives and dependents in important government and governmental positions, access of the children and dependents of the regime to information rents and the opportunity to make money for individuals and groups, appointing politically close people in sensitive positions and trying to unify the country’s executive and managerial environment, accepting orders from influential people to receive privileges, exploiting government financial and economic resources.”
Based on these intertwined connections, if we want to reject family appointments in the governments and we can hardly find an official who is not close or dependent on one of these relative and causal relationships. However, for Hassan Rouhani, it was the direct communication of some people with him that created the most margins. So that the Rouhani government is considered one of the busiest governments in family appointments.
The result of these appointments became clear when the conflict between Qalibaf and Rouhani, the rent and corruption of Qalibaf’s son and wife were revealed and the result was the exposure of the corruption of Rouhani’s brother Hossein Fereydoun and Jahangiri’s brother. At the same time, if the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran did not intervene, perhaps the corruption of Raisi’s family and relatives would have been exposed at least four years earlier.
In Rouhani’s government, among his relatives, these names have been exposed and marginalized until today: Hossein Fereydoun (Rouhani’s brother), Ismail Samavi (Rouhani’s nephew), Gholamali Khoshro (Rouhani’s son-in-law’s father), Abdul Hossein Fereydoun (Rouhani’s cousin), Ismail Najjar (Rouhani’s sister-in-law’s cousin) and Kambiz Mehdizadeh (Rouhani’s son-in-law). Although Ali Asghar Monsan, the Minister of Cultural Heritage and Tourism, Ali Asghar Peyvandi (former head of the Red Crescent) and Tahereh Qayyomi are also on the list of Rouhani’s relatives, who have denied this issue.
The government of relatives and sons-in-law, the phenomenon of Meghdadism
What has made the family appointments of Raisi’s “anti-corruption” government a point of common ground for his critics and supporters since the election, is the strong and undeniable influence of his wife and brothers-in-law in his campaign headquarters.
Since the establishment of the Raisi headquarters, the children of Alam al-Hoda had such influence in choosing the members of this group that some fundamentalist political groups and figures came to the conclusion that the main decision-maker of the headquarters is not the Raisi, but is the family of Alam al-Hoda. When we reached the days of choosing the cabinet, some choices showed the continuation of this influence; A point that was against all the promises and words of the head of the anti-corruption government.
As one of the anti-corruption programs of his government, Raisi had promised that once he won the elections, he would launch a system for introducing managers so that meritocracy would take an objective form instead of nepotism and rent and business exploitation. The system that was launched, but in practice, when the day came for the introduction of the cabinet and the appointment of managers and governors, what was achieved was custom, rent and family appointments; As far as now “Government of sons-in-law and relatives” is another name of the 13th government.
Of course, according to promises and appointments, the relative and causal relatives of a president have not taken an executive position until today, but no appointment in a president’s government has been made without the opinion of their relatives and their rent, and these people have played an unprecedented role as brokers of positions, compared to previous governments. The news that has been published about the appointment of the children of figures such as Safar Harandi and Laleh Eftekhari and the appointment of Raisi’s wife’s relatives and the appointees of Alam al Hoda’s son and the informant’s companions and close relatives of the ministers, as well as the distribution of positions among Raisi’s comrades (cover candidates) show the tsunami of rentier, commissioned and kinship appointments in this government.
While most of the fundamentalist and government news agencies have defended family appointments in the 13th government, Ahmed Beghash, the current member of parliament, has criticized Ebrahim Raisi and said that his government is suffering from the phenomenon of “meghdadism” similar to the phenomenon of “familiarism” in Rouhani’s government. He is referring to the role of Meghdad Nili, Ebrahim Raisi’s son-in-law, and the president’s family in the appointments. Begash has also criticized the appointment of numerous graduates of Imam Sadegh University in positions; A place where all the powers are under the responsibility of the family and close relatives of the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran and Raisi.
Meghdad Nili, the husband of Reyhane sadat Raisi and the son-in-law of the president, plays a key role in government appointments. Meghdad is so trusted by the president that when the cabinet was formed, it was said that he would be the head of the president’s office. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Cultural Institute of Quran and Etrat of Imam Reza School; An institution whose other board members include Ebrahim Raisi’s wife and his daughter.
Meghdad has the experience of being the editor of Raja News. The position that his brother, Meysam Nili, the managing director of Raja News, entrusted to him. Perhaps the reason for the support of the editor of Javan newspaper and some fundamentalist media for family appointments in the presidential government can be understood in the key presence of Meghdad Nili in the government. It was in this way that Abdullah Ganji, the editor-in-chief of Javan newspaper, affiliated to the IRGC and one of the serious critics of family appointments of the previous government, called family appointments and the influence of relatives in the president’s government normal in an editorial and wrote: “The basic question is, if a capable person and he has relatives in the government, what should he do?”
Ganji said: “We didn’t come out of the Kinder Surprise without knowing each other’s background.”
Raja News director and brother-in-law of Ebrahim Raisi, who made headlines last month for his sharp attack on Safi Golpayegani, is another influential family member of the president in government appointments. Meysam Nili’s attacks on one by one taqlid authorities caused many fundamentalist figures and leading Iranian clerics to visit this Shia cleric with the intention of appeasement. In recent days, Nili became a member of the board of trustees of the Farabi Foundation and also the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA).
Among the other news-making appointments in the presidential cabinet was the appointment of Ensieh Khazali to the position of the vice president of women and family affairs. Ensieh Khazali, the daughter of Abulqasem Khazali, is one of the closest associates of Alam al-Hoda. It is said that Eniseh Khazali’s close and old relationship with Raisi’s wife and the closeness of their views on women’s rights caused her to be appointed to this position.
The appointment of the son-in-law of the minister of health and treatment of Raisi government with a pseudonym as an adviser to the minister, the appointment of three sisters-in-law of the minister of agriculture in different positions, the appointment of the daughter of one of Raisi’s supporters in the Ministry of Agriculture, the appointment of the daughter of the representative of Gorgan and one of Raisi’s supporters in the Ministry of Oil, The appointment of Hossein Ameri, the son of Laleh Eftekhari, representative of Hami Raisi, as the head of the Steel Employees’ Pension Support Fund is the only exposed part of family, rentier and custom appointments in the current government. This is despite the fact that many media in Iran, including fundamentalist media, have preferred not to publish the names of other family members and rentiers who have taken positions in the anti-corruption government and are content with giving warning codes.
With MPs protesting nepotism in a letter to the government and Ebrahim Raeesi’s explicit reference to this issue in the meeting of the government board, we can be sure that what is being said about the “government of sons-in-law and relatives” probably has wider dimensions. Keyhan newspaper also wrote in this regard without mentioning the names of the appointees: “The appointment of associates and relatives, even if there is no problem from the point of view of law and Sharia, will undoubtedly waste the government’s and people’s money and patience in responding to excuse-makers who have nothing to lose.”
The inability of the president’s government to fulfill its promises and manage the economic crisis has caused many of his supporters to start distancing themselves from the government much faster than expected. Also, being deprived of the trophies of the competition, which ended with the ruling of the leadership in favor of Raisi, has placed a number of other supporters of the president in the ranks of his critics.
The honeymoon of fundamentalists and Raisi has come to an end prematurely, and now it is time to ask for shares for unfulfilled promises and ungiven shares; Seeking shares, the first step of which is apparently the disclosure of family relationships, rents and the names of traffickers, brokers and middlemen of positions and positions in the “government of relatives and sons-in-law”.