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Rouhani accused of trying to separate religion, administration

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani continues to be criticized for saying that the administration should leave religious direction in the hands of experts and the clergy.

Hard-line cleric Ayatollah Mohammad-Taghi Mesbah Yazdi has not only criticized President Hassan Rouhani’s comments that religious affairs should not be in the hands of the administration, but has also questioned the president’s religious credentials.

Rouhani has been engaged in a public debate with a number of hard-line clerics over the enforcement of religious and cultural norms in society. In public speeches, he said some clerics obsessed with the Iranian people's afterlife had “delusions” and did not know religion. He also called for religious affairs to be handled by religious experts and clergy rather than the administration.

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