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Iranian Lawmakers Vote Against Impeachment Of Finance Minister

Embattled Iranian Finance Minister Shamseddin Hossein
Iran's parliament has voted against the dismissal of Finance Minister Shamseddin Hosseini over his alleged role in a recent banking scandal.

Of the 244 lawmakers present in the house, 141 rejected the impeachment on November 1.

Hosseini, who had been summoned to parliament for the proceedings, defended his decision not to step down over the 2005 embezzlement of $2.6 million from Bank Melli.

President Mahmud Ahmadinejad also defended him during the proceedings.

Hosseini is accused of failing to apply rules and appointing unqualified people to important positions.

Correspondents say the impeachment proceedings against Hosseini are part of a new wave of pressure put by the parliament on the president.

Hard-liners accuse Ahmadinejad of being in the thrall of a "deviant current" of advisers seeking to undermine the authority of the clergy in the Islamic republic's system of government.

compiled from agency reports