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Iran's Parliament nearly approves outlines of bill on referendum

The Parliament (Majlis) on Sunday nearly approved the outlines of a bill on proceedings for requests to hold a national referendum, IRNA reported from Tehran on Monday, quoting the Iranian press.

The Persian-language daily `Yass-E No' reported that nearly two-thirds of parliamentarians had in a rising vote approved the outlines of the motion.

However, `Yass-E No' stressed that final debates on the bill were postponed until Tuesday after several MPs said they did not accept the accuracy of vote counts.

The bill was prepared by 25 MPs who maintained that the Parliament bylaws are ambiguous on requests by MPs or the president to hold a referendum, as is highlighted by Article 59 of the Constitution.

The bill which comprises an article and five notes will be added to the Parliament bylaws as Article 207.

Under its proposed article, the Parliament would elect a special committee comprising 15 MPs to study the requests and report the outcomes to the parliamentarians.

The note 1 of the article requires that the request for holding a referendum be submitted to the Parliament by the president or at least 100 MPs, and that any proceedings into the request be held in a single round of debates.

Also, another additional note to the Parliament bylaws stresses that a request for holding a referendum must be approved by two-thirds of the Parliament.

Article 59 of the Iranian Constitution provides that in extremely important economic, political, social and cultural matters, the functions of the legislature may be exercised through direct resource to popular vote through a referendum.

... Payvand News - 5/5/03 ... --

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