Khamenei: Iran Yet to See Benefits from Foreign Delegations

March 10, 2016

On March 10, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told the recently elected Assembly of Experts that Iran has not yet benefited from receiving Western delegations. Dozens of trade delegations from European countries have visited Tehran since the nuclear deal was announced in July 2015. “Unless results are in in action, agreement on paper is of no use,” Khamenei said. He, however, clarified that he does not favor cutting ties with the West. Iran “must have relations with the whole world” except for the United States and Israel.  

The Assembly of Experts is a body of 88 clerics and scholars charged with overseeing and appointing the supreme leader. In the February 26 elections for the assembly, hardliners lost ground to candidates aligned with former President Hashemi Rafsanjani and current President Hassan Rouhani, who have urged reforms in the past. During the March 10 meeting, Khamenei told the new assembly to remain “revolutionary” assembly to “only consider God and the country’s needs” in choosing his successor. Khamenei is 76 years old, and the current assembly will sit for eight years before the next election. The following are excerpted remarks by Khamenei.
Foreign Affairs
Assembly of Experts and Succession