Friday, October 3, 2008


Dr. Ali Akbar Velayati (علی‌اکبر ولایتی; born June 25, 1945 in Shemiran) is an Iranian politician and a former pediatrician, currently an Advisor in International Affairs to the Supreme Leader. He was the Foreign Minister of Iran for about 16 years (December 15, 1981 – August 20, 1997), making him the longest-serving Foreign Minister in Iranian history.
Velayati served for two terms under Prime Minister Mir-Hossein Mousavi from 1981 to 1988 and then two more terms under President Hashemi Rafsanjani from 1988 to 1997.
After winning the presidential election on October 13, 1981, President Ali Khamenei proposed Velayati as his prime minister to the Majlis of Iran, but Majlis voted against him (74/80/38) on October 22. Khamenei later proposed Mir-Hossein Mousavi who gained Majlis's approval.
Velayati acquired his M.D. from University of Tehran and pediatrics degrees from the Johns Hopkins University, respectively in 1971 and 1974.
Velayati was under consideration by the conservative alliance of Iran as a possible candidate for Iranian presidential election of 2005, but he announced that he does not accept candidacy of the conservative alliance and will run as an Independent. He finally decided not to run. It's been said widely because he did not want to run against Hashem Rafsanjani.

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