Mohammad-Javad Larijani

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Mohammad-Javad Larijani
محمد جواد لاریجانی
Mohammad Javad Larijani.jpg
Member of Parliament of Iran
In office
Personal details
Born 1951 (age 62–63)
Najaf, Iraq
Political party Independent
Residence Tehran, Iran
Religion Twelver Shi'a Islam

Mohammad Javad Ardashir Larijani (Persian: محمد جواد اردشیر لاریجانی‎) (born 1951) is an Iranian politician, cleric and academic.

Early life and education[edit]

Larijani is the son of Ayatollah Hashem Amoli and a brother of Ali Larijani, the current chairman of the Parliament and Sadegh Larijani, the current chief justice.[1] Larijani is a cousin of Ahmad Tavakkoli, who is the current director of Majlis Research Center.

Larijani, raised in a religious family, graduated from a hawza before starting his higher education in electrical engineering in Sharif University of Technology, wearing the uniform for the full four years. He later continued his studies outside Iran, in the Ph.D. program in mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley. However he did not finish his studies and did not write a dissertation as he returned to Iran because of the 1979 revolution.


Larijani is the head of the human rights council in the judiciary and one of the top advisors to the supreme leader. Additionally Larijani has been the director of Institute for Studies in Theoretical Physics and Mathematics in Tehran. Previously, he was a Majlis representative and the director of Majlis Research Center. He served as deputy minister of foreign affairs in the 1980s.[1]


Famously, when Larijani - in 2008 - was asked about the mass execution of political prisoners in Iran in a press conference, he answered "I have a good number of birth records, it is about 4%, we have two million new people each year. I am a positive person, optimistic minded."[2]

In a 2010 NBC News interview, Larijani defended the arrest of Nasrin Sotoudeh, an Iranian feminist activist, and a prominent human rights lawyer. Sotoudeh was detained in September and faces trial for "collusion against national security" and "spreading propaganda against the Islamic Republic.".[3] Larijani told NBC News that Iranian authorities believed that she was engaged "in a very nasty campaign" against Iran's national security. Nasrin Sotoudeh works for Shirin Ebadi's law firm. Shirin Ebadi is the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize recipient.

In May 2011, Larijani threatened to allow free passage of drug smugglers through Iran.[4]

In November 2011, Larijani claimed that nuclear weapons violate Islam.[5]

In January 2012, Larijani, the secretary-general of the Iranian High Council for Human Rights, described homosexuality as a "disease," and said that same-sex marriage was "immoral".[6]

In the matter of Iran's nuclear program, Larijani takes an extremely hard-line stance, passionately defending Iran's right to use nuclear energy. In an interview with student news agency ISNA in February 2010, Larijani stated, among other things, that "the West will not hand us our demands in the nuclear issue on a silver platter, but we must obtain what we want through force, and that is what we are doing." He further stresses that "Iran doesn't need to negotiate on enrichment, but on nuclear weapons… We must not negotiate on yellow cake, but only on nuclear weapons… I believe that advancement of our nuclear strategy must be based on our national interests, but stronger and more complex diplomacy is required.[7]


  1. ^ a b Katzman, Kenneth (17 June 2013). "Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses" (CRS Report for US Congress). Congressional Research Service. Retrieved 3 August 2013. 
  2. ^ "A Big Prison: Iran, Part 1" YouTube, 2008
  3. ^ "Death penalty unlikely for rights lawyer". NBC News. 19 November 2010. Retrieved 23 October 2010. 
  4. ^ "Now Iran threatens to allow transit of Afghan drugs to Europe unless we stop criticizing them." Daily Mail, 14 May 2011.
  5. ^ Iranian official: Islam is against nukes, 17 November 2011, The Washington Examiner
  6. ^ News Gay Middle East
  7. ^ News Mardom Salari

External links[edit]