Ahmadinejad appoints new Iran first VP | world | Hindustan Times
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Ahmadinejad appoints new Iran first VP

world Updated: Sep 13, 2009 19:16 IST

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Sunday appointed a new first Vice President after his previous choice was rejected by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the official IRNA news agency reported.

The hardline president chose for the post Mohammad Reza Rahimi, who was one of several vice presidents during his first four-year term.

On September 3, Ahmadinejad won a vote of confidence from Iranian lawmakers for 18 nominees out of his 21-member cabinet, proposed in the wake of the June disputed presidential election.

Ahmadinejad had come under fire from his own hardline supporters after he appointed his close relative Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie as his first deputy and then delayed in sacking him, despite being ordered to do so by Khamenei.

Hardliners had not forgiven Rahim Mashaie for saying last year that Iran was a friend of the Israeli people. Ahmadinejad has said the Jewish state is doomed to be "wiped off the map."

Rahim Mashaie has since been made the president's chief of staff.