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What's Rafsanjani's political future?

Rafsanjani's comments about the situation in Iran's prisons resulted in unprecedented criticisms and may have cemented his political isolation.
EDITORS' NOTE: Reuters and other foreign media are subject to Iranian restrictions on leaving the office to report, film or take pictures in Tehran.

Former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani gives the opening speech during Iran's Assembly of Experts' biannual meeting in Tehran March 8, 2011. Rafsanjani lost his position on Tuesday as head of an important state clerical body after hardliners criticised him for being too close to the reformist opposition. REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi (IRAN - Tags: POLITIC
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Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Iran’s former centrist president and current head of the Expediency Discernment Council, the advising body to Iran’s leader, staged unprecedented attacks against his hard-line opponents during an April 12 address at the Lady of the Revolution Conference.

Rafsanjani’s words were reminiscent of Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri’s 1988 letter in which he raised the issues of oppression and the violent treatment of prisoners. That letter led to the stripping of his designation as Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s successor, permanent political isolation and a long house arrest.

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