Demonstrations by Khamenei's faction failed
Head of Assembly of Experts distances himself from Khamenei

Reports from Iran say that the public in different cities widely ignored the demonstrations organized yesterday to show support for Khamenei and the principle of velayat-e faqih, turning the hastily arranged events into another defeat for Khamenei and his faction.

In another development, speaking in Qom, mullah Ali Meshkini, the head of the Assembly of Experts and one of Khamenei's associates, emphasized upon the leadership of Khamenei, but admitted that Khamenei was not qualified to be the Marja'-e Taqlid (source of emulation). He said: "Not being superior in religious authority, does not undermine one's qualifications as vali-e faqih."

Meshkini, whose remarks appeared in some of the state-run press, also condemned the attack on Montazeri's house in Qom by the Intelligence Ministry agents. Concerned over the regime's uncertain future, he thus distanced himself from Khamenei.

Additional reports from the cities in Isfahan province, central Iran, indicate that anti-Khamenei graffiti are distinctively visible on the walls.

Following the presidential election farce in May and the resultant troika leadership, the regime's internal feuding has irreversibly escalated. The raging power struggle has gotten out of control despite the mullahs' all-out effort to cover up the deepeni ng crisis until after the Islamic Conference.

Meshkini acknowledged this fact, reiterating that on the eve of the Islamic Conference summit in Tehran, "the situation must remain calm so that the foreign guests would perceive Iran as a safe and tranquil country."

Secretariat of the National Council of Resistance of Iran
November 23, 1997

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