May. 22, 2023

Deep Dive: Reshuffle at Iran’s Supreme National Security Council


Iran’s president has appointed Rear Admiral Ali Akbar Ahmadian as the secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC). Gathering the country’s civilian and military-security leadership, the council plays a key role in shaping foreign and national security policy.

In his May 22 appointment directive, President Ebrahim Raisi also expressed gratitude for the “10-year efforts” of outgoing Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani. While the reshuffle had long been expected, it comes during severe conservative infighting as Iran undergoes leadership transition. The change is also taking place amid a continued deadlock in the talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal—and as the regional political landscape is in flux.


Little known face on the political stage

All prior SNSC secretaries have been high-profile politicians. In contrast, Ahmadian—a former commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Navy and a member of the Expediency Council—is virtually unknown on the political stage. This raises many questions. But amid the ambiguities...

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Amwaj. media articles are authored by our team. ... Full Bio