Ezzatollah Sahabi

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Dr. Ezatollah Sahabi
عزت‌الله سحابی
Ezzatollah Sahabi.jpg
Member of Parliament of Iran
In office
28 May 1980 – 28 May 1984
Constituency Tehran
Majority 1,070,929 (50.2%)
Personal details
Born (1930-05-09)9 May 1930
Tehran, Iran
Died 31 May 2011(2011-05-31) (aged 81)
Tehran, Iran
Nationality Iranian
Political party Nationalist-Religious
Other political
Freedom Movement
Spouse(s) ZarrinDokht Ataei (1960–2011) (his death)
Children Haleh Sahabi & Hamed Sahabi
Religion Shia Islam

Ezzatollah Sahabi (9 May 1930 [1]– 31 May 2011) was an Iranian scholar, humanitarian, democracy activist, politician and former parliament member. He was famous for his political-economical social analysis, and also for the many years of imprisonment in both the pre-revolution and post-revolution eras. He was leader of the Nationalist-Religious Coalition from 2003 until his death in 2011.

Early life[edit]

Sahabi was born on 9 May 1930 in Tehran, Iran. His father, Yadollah Sahabi, was an influential figure in the 1979 Iranian revolution.

He studied mechanical engineering at the Faculty of Engineering Tehran University.

Political career[edit]

He was appointed as a member of Council of Islamic Revolution by Ruhollah Khomeini on 12 February 1979. Mehdi Bazargan, then Prime Minister of Iran, named Sahabi as Head of National Budget Center. He was elected as a member of Parliament in election of 1980.

In later years Sahabi was managing editor of the journal Iran-e Farda (The Iran of Tomorrow), which was banned by the Islamic government,[2] and participated in the 2000 'Iran After the Elections' Conference held in Berlin, for which he was sentenced to four and a half years imprisonment.[3] He was well known as the leader of the Iran's Nationalist-Religious political alliance.

Sahabi spent a total of 15 years in prison both before and after the 1979 Islamic revolution.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Sahabi was married to Zahra Ataei, whose maternal uncle was Mehdi Bazargan. They had a son and a daughter. In April 2011, he was hospitalized in Persian Hospital. On 1 May 2011, Sahabi went into a coma after a stroke. On 31 May 2011, he died at age 81 in Modarres Hospital and his funeral was held the next day.[5][6]


Sahabi's funeral was reportedly marred by the removal of his body by plain clothes authorities, the death of his daughter, Haleh Sahabi, from cardiac arrest after being beaten by the plain clothes for holding a photograph of her father. Also the plain clothes heated and arrest of several mourners. According to an unnamed journalist present at the funeral, a "large group" of plainclothes and security forces present at the ceremony "beat a number of mourners", including Haleh Sahabi.[7] Haleh Sahabi reportedly collapsed after trying to stop authorities from removing her father's body. According to Haleh's uncle,[8] the woman died due to "the beating given to her, (which) were severe". However, her son Shamekhi was forced into saying by the government that[9] stated that his mother died "not due to beatings but because of a cardiac arrest".[10] Mourners reportedly arrested at the funeral include Habibollah Peyman, a member of the Freedom Movement of Iran, political activist Hamid Ahrari, and Hamed Montazeri, the grandson of the late dissident cleric Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri.[11] Fars news agency denied there had been any clash with police and accused the opposition movement of seeking to politicise the incident.[12]

Hoda Saber

See also[edit]


Political offices
Preceded by
Akbar Etemad
Head of Budget Center
Succeeded by
Abdullah Raesi
Party political offices