TEHRAN, Aug 26, 2007 (AFP) – The head of the Iranian central bank has resigned, the third departure of a key economic policymaker from President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s administration in just two weeks, the official IRNA agency reported on Sunday. The only reason given for the change was that Samareh Hashemi had too much work combining the job as a top Ahmadinejad advisor with his interior ministry post which is responsible for organising elections. The resignation of Ebrahim Sheibani comes after the unexpected departures of the oil and industry ministers on August 12, a move that was widely seen as an attempt by Ahmadinejad to increase his control over the economy.
It also coincided with the departure of one of Ahmadinejad’s closest aides from a top interior ministry post and his replacement by a general who has a background in the elite Revolutionary Guards.
“The resignation of Ebrahim Sheibani has been accepted by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad,” government spokesman Gholam Hossein Elham was quoted as saying by the official IRNA agency.
He added that the government was seeking to appoint Tahmasb Mazaheri — the economy minister under Ahmadinejad’s reformist predecessor Mohammad Khatami — as new central bank chief and the process wa