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Lawmakers Summon Ahmadinejad Over Currency Crisis

President Mahmud Ahmadinejad addresses the parliament in a previous appearance before lawmakers, in March.
Iranian state radio reports that 77 lawmakers have signed a petition criticizing President Mahmud Ahmadinejad's handling of the country's currency crisis.

Under Iranian law, the president has one month to appear in parliament to respond to the petition.

It would be the second time in less than a year that lawmakers have compelled Ahmadinejad, whose second and final term ends in August 2013, to appear and answer their questions.

Iran's rial was trading at about 11,000 to one U.S. dollar in mid-2011.

On November 3, it reached 31,000 rials to the dollar after reaching a peak of 36,000 late last month.

On November 2, the embattled Ahmadinejad backed down in a confrontation with Iran's powerful judiciary, which earlier denied him permission to visit Evin prison, where a senior aide is locked up.

The aide, press adviser Akbar Javanfekr, was sentenced to six months for publishing materials contrary to Islam and for insulting Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, who holds ultimate political and religious authority in Iran.

Ahmadinejad sent a letter to Khamenei saying that he would focus his attention on overcoming Western economic sanctions.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP