Iran General NewsTop Iran minister faces impeachment

Top Iran minister faces impeachment

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ImageAFP: Iran's parliament will move to impeach Interior Minister Ali Kordan for "dishonesty" early November after he confessed to holding a fake Oxford University degree, the ISNA news agency said on Sunday.

ImageTEHRAN (AFP) — Iran's parliament will move to impeach Interior Minister Ali Kordan for "dishonesty" early November after he confessed to holding a fake Oxford University degree, the ISNA news agency said on Sunday.

"Kordan will face an impeachment vote on November 4," a member of parliament's board, Hamid Reza Hajibabai, was quoted as saying.

Pressure has been mounting on Kordan to quit the cabinet post he took up in August after the prestigious British university denied awarding him any qualification through a representative, as he had claimed.

"The minister has claimed to have been deceived by the Oxford University's representative… whether he has been deceived or dishonest, such a person does not deserve to be interior minister," read the motion signed by 28 MPs.

An impeachment motion needs a minimum of 10 signatures to be put on parliament's agenda.

Kordan had asserted the degree was issued for his "managerial and executive experience and for submitting a thesis to Oxford University via a person who had opened an affiliate office in Tehran in English-language affairs."

He later said he had approached Oxford University after MPs cast doubt on his degree, but "to my utter disbelief, the university did not confirm (the degree) when my representative went there."

He had shown the purported degree to MPs in a controversial vote of confidence session on August 5, during which he was confirmed in office by 169 votes to 100.

The minister replaced Mostafa Pour Mohammadi who was at odds with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The president has been supporting Kordan throughout the controversy.

The country's presidential elections slated for June 2009, in which Ahmadinejad is considered a strong candidate, is held by the interior ministry.

Kordan has said he had pressed charges against the person who claimed to represent Oxford University in Tehran as soon as he realised his degree was fake.

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