Mostafa Pourmohammadi

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Mostafa Pourmohammadi
Mostafa Pourmohammadi press conference 2014-10-18 01.jpg
Minister of Justice
In office
15 August 2013 – 20 August 2017
PresidentHassan Rouhani
Preceded byMorteza Bakhtiari
Succeeded byAlireza Avayi
Minister of Interior
In office
24 August 2005 – 19 May 2008
PresidentMahmoud Ahmadinejad
Preceded byAbdolvahed Mousavi Lari
Succeeded bySeyyed Mehdi Hashemi (acting)
Personal details
Born (1960-03-09) 9 March 1960 (age 59)
Qom, Iran
Political partyCombatant Clergy Association
Alma materUniversity of Mashhad
WebsiteOfficial website

Mostafa Pourmohammadi (Persian: مصطفی پورمحمدی‎; born 9 March 1960, Qom) is an Iranian politician and prosecutor, who has served at different positions and cabinet posts. He was minister of interior from 2005 to 2008 and minister of justice from 2013 until 2017. Pourmohammadi is reportedly implicated in the 1988 Massacre of Iranian Prisoners.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Pourmohammadi was born in Qom in 1960.[2][3] However, IRNA reports his birth year as 1959.[4]

He was educated in jurisprudence, principles of jurisprudence, and philosophy in the Haqqani seminary in Qom.[2][5] He completed his education in extra-jurisprudence and principles in Mashhad, Qom, and Tehran.[2] He holds a level four jurisprudence and Islamic law degree, which is equivalent of a PhD.[2]


Pourmohammadi was prosecutor of the Revolutionary Court in Bandar Abbas, Kermanshah and Mashhad from 1979 to 1986.[4] Next he served as prosecutor of the Armed Forces Revolutionary Court in the western regions in 1986.[6]

He was appointed deputy intelligence minister in 1987 under the then intelligence minister Hojjatoleslam Ali Fallahian during the term of the former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.[2][7] He was also named director the ministry's counterintelligence directorate.[8] From 1997 to 1998 Pourmohammadi served as the director of the ministry's foreign directorate.[8] His term as deputy intelligence minister ended in 1999.[9][10]

In addition, he was acting deputy minister of information from 1997 to 1999.[4] He also served as member and head of the board of trustees of Center for Islamic Revolution Documents.[4] He was appointed by supreme leader Khamenei as the head of the political and social department of his office in 2003.[4]

On 24 August 2005, Pourmohammadi was appointed interior minister by Ahmadinejad.[11][12] The Majlis approved him as minister with 153 votes in favor.[13] In an effort to end the plight of refugees, Pourmohammadi attended a meeting of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees on 10 October 2006 in Geneva, Switzerland.[14] He was removed from office in a cabinet reshuffle in May 2008.[15] He was dismissed allegedly for informing Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei about the electoral irregularities without the consent of Ahmedinejad.[16]

Then Pourmohammadi was appointed head of Iran's general inspectorate office.[17] He announced his candidacy for the 2013 presidential election in March 2013 but withdrew in favor of Manouchehr Mottaki.[12] On 4 August 2013, Pourmohammadi was nominated by newly elected President Hassan Rouhani as the minister of justice and was confirmed on 15 August by the Majlis.[18] On 2 August 2017, he was announced that he will not be part of Rouhani's second government.


During his tenure as deputy intelligence minister, Pourmohammadi is reportedly implicated in the 1988 Massacre of Iranian Prisoners[1] based on the orders of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and other key politicians. According to Grand Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri, he was "the representative of the Ministry of Information in charge of questioning prisoners in Evin Prison" during the massacre.[11] Montazeri saw Pourmohammadi as being "a central figure" in the mass executions of prisoners in Tehran.[19] In 2016, Mohammadi said: “We are proud to have carried out God’s commandment concerning the People's Mujahedin of Iran… I am at peace and have not lost any sleep all these years because I acted in accordance with law and Islam.”[20]

His nomination as justice minister in August 2013 was criticized by three international organizations, namely Reporters Without Borders, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, and Human Rights Watch, on 8 August and these organizations requested the withdrawal of his nomination for the post of justice minister due to his controversial past tenure.[21]

Personal life[edit]

Pourmohammadi is married and has four children.[22]


  1. ^ a b Interior Minister Pour-Mohammadi and Iranian Human Rights Abuses U.S. State Department 11 October 2006
  2. ^ a b c d e "Who's Who in Iranian Politics. Mostafa Pourmohammadi". IRD Diplomacy. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  3. ^ Yonah Alexander; Milton M. Hoenig (2008). The New Iranian Leadership: Ahmadinejad, Terrorism, Nuclear Ambition, and the Middle East. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 265. ISBN 978-0-275-99639-0. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
  4. ^ a b c d e "Biography of Pour-Mohammadi, nominee for post of interior minister". IRNA via Global Security. 14 August 2005. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
  5. ^ David E. Thaler; Alireza Nader; Shahram Chubin; Jerrold D. Green; Charlotte Lynch; Frederic Wehrey (2010). "Factionalism and the Primacy of Informal Networks". Mullahs, Guards, and Bonyads (PDF). Santa Monica: RAND Corporation. Retrieved 29 July 2013.
  6. ^ "Ministers of Murder: Iran's New Security Cabinet". Human Rights Watch. 15 December 2005. Retrieved 22 February 2013.
  7. ^ Haeri, Safa (5 August 2005). "Iran's new president presents and "undiscovered island"". Iran Press Service. Paris-Tehran. Retrieved 4 February 2013.
  8. ^ a b "Iran's Ministry of Intelligence and Security: A profile" (Report). Federal Research Division. December 2012. Retrieved 5 August 2013.
  9. ^ "Potential Candidate Series: Mostafa Pourmohammadi". Iran Election Watch. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  10. ^ La Guardia, Anton (15 December 2005). "Rights group attacks Iran's 'ministers of murder'". The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
  11. ^ a b Kazemzadeh, Masoud (2007). "Ahmadinejad's Foreign Policy". Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East. 27 (2): 423–449. doi:10.1215/1089201x-2007-015. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
  12. ^ a b "Iran's Inspectorate Chief to Run in Presidential Election". Fars News Agency. 17 March 2013. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  13. ^ "Iran: 17 proposed ministers receive votes of confidence, 4 rejected". Payvand. 25 August 2005. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
  14. ^ Iran's murderous mullah to attend UN meeting Persian Journal 10 October 2006
  15. ^ "Ahmadinejad sacks Iranian interior minister". RIA Novoski. Tehran. 17 May 2008. Retrieved 16 August 2013.
  16. ^ Berti, Benedetta (29 August 2008). "Ahmadinejad and the shifting political environment in Iran". Iran Times International. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  17. ^ "Official: Uprisings in Region Inspired by Islamic Revolution". Fars News Agency. 12 February 2011. Retrieved 19 June 2013.
  18. ^ "Iranian Parliament Gives Vote of Confidence to Majority of Rouhani's Proposed Ministers". Fars News. 15 August 2013. Retrieved 15 August 2013.
  19. ^ Pour-Mohammadi and the 1988 Prison Massacres Human Rights Watch, December 2005
  20. ^ "Blood-soaked secrets with Iran's 1998 Prison Massacres are ongoing crimes against humanity" (PDF). Retrieved 14 December 2018.
  21. ^ "Iran: Withdraw Cabinet Nominee Implicated in Abuses". Human Rights Watch. 8 August 2013. Retrieved 8 August 2013.
  22. ^ "Iran's newly elected president nominates cabinet". CNN. 5 August 2013. Retrieved 29 August 2013.

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Ali Movahedi-Kermani
Secretary-General of the Combatant Clergy Association
Political offices
Preceded by
Abdolvahed Mousavi Lari
Minister of Interior
Succeeded by
Ali Kordan
Preceded by
Morteza Bakhtiari
Minister of Justice
Succeeded by
Alireza Avayi