Ebrahim Raisi, the Iranian regime’s new president has appointed Mohsen Rezaei as the vice president for Economic Affairs, as well as the roles of secretary of the Supreme Council of Economic Coordination, and secretary of the administration’s Economic Headquarters.
Before becoming Raisi’s vice-president, Rezaei served as a member and secretary of the Expediency Discernment Council since 1997. He has run for president several times but has never been selected by the regime’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.
According to statements that Rezaei has made previously in regards to economic affairs, it suggests that his new role will involve promoting the regime’s terrorist activities. He has already put forward his questionable place to improve Iran’s dying economy declaring that the value of Iran’s currency, albeit damaged by inflation, is equal to the values of the dollar and the euro.
Mohsen Rezaei was born Sabzevar Rezaei Mir Ghaed on September 1, 1954 in the city of Masjed Soleiman. During his studies in Tehran in the mid-1970s, Rezaei made connections with the religious group, Mansourun, and with some of their members, went on to form the Mojahedin Organization of the Islamic Revolution after the 1979 Revolution.
Rezaei was also a key element in the repression of the ethnic minorities, particularly Kurds, at the beginning of the revolution since he was one of the top IRGC commanders. Afterward, he and his ilk were active in suppressing and arresting dissidents, mainly MEK supporters.
Soon after, he became a commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ Intelligence and was appointed as the commander-in-chief in the first months of the Iran-Iraq war, a role which he served in from 1981 to 1997. During this time, tens of thousands of children were used as “one-time soldiers” to sweep Iraqi minefields, while the Iranian regime prolonged the war and launched several offensives, known as Operation Karbala. These ultimately failed and resulted in the deaths of thousands of Iranian citizens.
The regime’s official statistics identified 10,000 Iranians as killed or missing in Operation Karbala-4 and a further 7,000 in Karbala-5. Another 26,000 were listed as injured in those two operations.
Rezaei is also responsible for the crimes committed in ward 209 of Evin Prison due to his role in the IRGC. The notorious ward was used to torture dissidents, as well as members and supporters of the MEK.
A further incident from Rezaei’s warpath saw his involvement in a bombing in Argentina in 1994. On July 18, 1994, a truck bomb outside a Jewish center in Buenos Aires killed 85 people and injured a further 200. The following month, it was announced that the bombing had been planned by the IRGC in Tehran. A lawsuit against the perpetrators of the attack was filed in 2006, including Rezaei, and as a result, they were placed on Interpol’s wanted list.
In a reaction, Argentina’s government condemned the appointment of a second official in new Iran President Ebrahim Raisi’s administration wanted by Interpol in relation to the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires.
Argentina’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement expressing “strongest condemnation” of the approval of former IRGC leader Mohsen Rezaei as Iran’s vice-president for economic affairs.
Despite having little to no experience in managing the economy, Rezaei’s new role as the Vice President for Economic Affairs has confused many people. He is also said to be heading the Supreme Council of Economic Coordination, known as the ‘Economic War Room’, tasked with tackling Iran’s economic crisis.
The Iranian economic crises are due to the regime’s corruption and financing of terrorism. Thus, the Raisi government and its officials like Rezaei are unable to resolve economic crises, and will inevitably resort to exerting more pressure on the Iranian people while further amplifying state corruption.