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Iran parliament set to vote on Raisi’s cabinet picks

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi speaks before parliament in the capital Tehran on August 21, 2021. (Atta Kenare/AFP)
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi speaks before parliament in the capital Tehran on August 21, 2021. (Atta Kenare/AFP)

TEHRAN, Iran — Iran’s parliament is due to complete debate on President Ebrahim Raisi’s cabinet before an afternoon vote of confidence allowing the new government to start work.

The legislative vetting process began on Saturday and will resume early this afternoon, when the ultraconservative president will deliver a speech to lawmakers.

In an Islamic Republic where ultimate power rests with Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Raisi inherits a difficult socioeconomic situation.

Iran has been been strangled financially by sanctions reimposed by Washington after then US president Donald Trump pulled out of a multilateral nuclear deal in 2018.

The country of 83 million people has since been hit by a severe economic crisis amplified by the COVID pandemic.

Iran is currently grappling with a fifth wave of infections — the strongest wave yet.

The country recorded its highest single day death toll yesterday, with 709 fatalities recorded by the health ministry in 24 hours.

The ultraconservative Raisi won a June 18 election marred by record low turnout and an absence of significant competitors.

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