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Hardline Islamic cleric Ebrahim Raisi has become the leading candidate to succeed 79-year-old Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei after he was named as head of the country’s judiciary.
Last week, Raisi was appointed as chief of the Iranian judiciary by current Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, meaning he now holds significant power over the country’s theocratic legal system. On Tuesday, he was also elected deputy chief of the 88-member Assembly of Experts, the clerical body tasked with choosing the next supreme leader, with the current Ayatollah turning 80 this year.
Head - Judiciary - Raisi - Ayatollah - Sadeq
In becoming head of the judiciary, Raisi succeeds Ayatollah Sadeq Amoli Larijani, who has long been touted as a future Supreme Leader. Larijani also ran for the position of deputy chief of the Assembly of Experts but lost out to Raisi, indicating his hopes of becoming the Supreme Leader may be fading.
As a result, Raisi is now well positioned to succeed Ayatollah Ali Khamenei when he retires or passes away. As noted by the Atlantic Council, Raisi’s loyalty to the regime and hardline anti-Western views mean he is an obvious fit for the role:
Khamenei - Race - Successor - Raisi - Contender
With Khamenei about to turn eighty, the race is on to choose his successor and Raisi is a viable contender thanks to...
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