A group of 130 Iranian lawmakers have signed a letter to summon President Hassan Rouhani over price hikes, amid anger over economic conditions in the country.
Eghbal Shakeri, a conservative lawmaker from Tehran and one of the signatories of the letter, said the parliament was concerned over the rising prices of basic commodities and foreign currency.
Iran’s currency rial has seen an alarming slide in recent weeks, touching an all-time low – 217,500 rial against the US dollar – on Monday. The turbulence in financial market has led to inflation with steep rise in prices of basic commodities.
Rouhani has termed the currency nosedive a “psychological warfare” launched by Iran’s “enemies” to “disrupt the country’s economy”.
In a cabinet meeting on Sunday, Rouhani called for “national unity and cooperation” to overcome this situation.
However, Iran’s parliament, dominated by conservative and hardliners, seems in no mood to spare the government over issues related to the economy and foreign affairs.
On Sunday, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif faced a “hostile parliament” when he was repeatedly interrupted by angry lawmakers, who accused him of “lying” over Iran’s foreign deals.
Although Zarif maintained his composure and Speaker Baqer Qalibaf urged the members to maintain calm, the stormy session further increased the fissures between reformist and conservative camps.
Ahead of the presidential polls next year, the conservative camp has launched a campaign criticizing the Rouhani government’s domestic and foreign policies, in particular the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and a latest pact with China, which has been criticized by some sections of the conservatives.
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