An Iranian politician, Shia Mujtahid, lawyer, academic and diplomat, who is currently the president of Iran. A senior cleric with impeccable revolutionary credentials Hassan Rouhani, who won his election as President of Iran, in 2013, has been an advisor to the Iran's supreme leader and held highly sensitive posts in parliament and the regime. Having spent time in Paris with the exiled Ayatollah Khomeini, Hassan Rouhani entered parliament after the revolution. During the war with Iraq in the 19880s he commanded national air defence. In 1986, as deputy speaker in parliament, he took part of what became known as the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages affair. He served for two years, until 2005, as chief negotiator on the vexed issue of Iran's nuclear programme, at the heart of the country's tense confrontation with the west. Born Hassan Feridoun, in Sorkhe, a small town in Semnan province into a modest religious and revolutionary family he changed his name to Hassan Rouhani, to avoid attention of the Savak secret police when preaching against the Shah. He was educated in Qom and studied law at Tehran University. In the 1990s he was awarded a PhD by Glasgow Caledonian University for a thesis on the flexibility of sharia law with reference to Iranian experience.
Compiler: M. Nauman Khan