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Tehran University officials discuss legal, social issues with Judiciary Chief

Tehran, Nov 8, IRNA -- Tehran Universtiy officials held a meeting with Irainian Judiciary Chief Ayatollah Mahmoud Hashemi Shahroudi here Sunday to discuss various legal and social issues.

During the meeting, which was attended by the university's chancellor, college deans, faculty members and administrative heads, questions were directed at the Judiciary head concerning various problems confronting university officials and students.

Among the problems taken up in the meeting were the issuance of verdicts by courts or administrative tribunals on issues affecting the university which had already been settled through the usual university procedure for resolving conflicts, the alleged weak performance of the Judiciary in enforcing social justice, defending public rights and preventing crimes, investigating financial corruption among public officials and improving conditions in jails, and the matter of giving priority to decisions of officials of universities in efforts to resolve university problems.

Ayatollah Shahroudi, for his part, made it clear that the policy of the Judiciary was to stay clear of issues which did not need the intervention of the courts.

He said issues which could be settled out of court by university experts or officials should not be referred to the Judiciary.

Referring to the allegation of weak performance on the part of the Judiciary in the enforcement of social justice, defense of public rights, prevention of crimes including financial corruption, he noted that these are problems which do not lie exclusively within the realm of the judicial system but involve all branches of government.

In his opinion, poverty, the weaknesses of the current economic and administrative system and the excesses of the state all provided a fertile soil for grievances.

However, the ayatollah pointed out, many cases of economic corruption have indeed been investigated by the courts and huge sums of money returned to the government's coffers.

On the state of the country's prisons, he informed that fundamental changes have been made in the nature and administration of verdicts, citing the cultural and educational amenities that have been made available to prisoners in recent years.

Moreover, he said there has been a significant move toward decongesting jails in the country through a decongestion policy and that the total number of prisoners has dropped to 120,000.

... Payvand News - 11/8/04 ... --

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