Press aide to Iran's Ahmadinejad resigns

TEHRAN, Aug 2, 2009 (AFP) - A press adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has quit to give the Iranian president freer hand in his new cabinet appointments following his June election victory, the ISNA news agency reported on Sunday.

"The president is examining necessary changes in the cabinet... ethically I see it my duty to step down to give him a free hand to appoint an efficient person to this post," Ali Akbar Javanfekr told the agency.

"I have not nominated myself for any new posts," he said.

The Fars news agency said Javanfekr had offered his resignation two weeks ago but that it has not been accepted by Ahmadinejad, who is due to be sworn in as president again before parliament on Wednesday.

Ahmadinejad has come under fire from his own hardline camp over the appointment of a controversial aide as his deputy and a delay in firing him even after orders from supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

He has also faced criticism for sacking Intelligence minister Gholam Hossein Mohseni Ejeie in the old government's final days amid protests against his re-election, which the opposition charged was fraudulent.

Source: AFP

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