Ahmadinejad ally arrested over graft charges
Tehran, June 24, 2011
Iran has arrested an ally of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the semi-official Fars news agency reported, the latest move by opponents of the president to try to weaken his position.
Mohammad Sharif Malekzadeh, an ally of the president's chief of staff, is accused of corruption.
Hardline politicians have also accused him of being part of a "deviant current" close to Ahmadinejad which has tried to undermine the role of Iran's clerical hierarchy by promoting secular ideas.
Hardline politicians forced Malekzadeh to resign as deputy foreign minister on Tuesday. Malekzadeh said he resigned to protect Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi from impeachment.