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Parliament sacks Interior Minister over fake Oxford degree

Article published on the 2008-11-04 Latest update 2008-11-05 11:43 TU

Kordan defends himself(Photo: Reuters)

Kordan defends himself
(Photo: Reuters)

The Iranian parliament Tuesday sacked Interior Minister Ali Kordan for falsely claiming to have a law degree from Britain's Oxford University. Parliament voted by 188 to 45, with 14 abstentions, for a motion to impeach Kordan for dishonesty, leading Speaker Ali Larijani to declare that he can no longer sit in the government.

Kordan, who brandished the purported degree certificate in a vote of confidence on 5 August, says he was duped. He said that he had pressed charges against the person who claimed to be Oxford's representative in Tehran after the university denied issuing it.

The is the tenth change in Ahmadinejad's 21-strong cabinet. According to the constitution, the entire cabinet must be submitted to a new vote of confidence if half the ministers change.

"Kordan's impeachment was a trial for the country and the system. It showed that the parliament has no tolerance for anyone in its bid to implement the law," Larijani said after the session, according to the Mehr news agency.

Kordan, who worked as a university law professor, replaced Mostafa Pour Mohammadi, a critic of Ahmadinejad, as Interior Minster three months ago.