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Vital role of the Majlis in the international arena
Iran’s parliamentary diplomacy greatly boosts national image worldwide Deputy Parliament speaker Mohammad-Reza Bahonar said that the Islamic Parliament of Iran has played a vital role in promoting the country’s foreign diplomacy through mobilization of all its potentials in the process of parliamentary diplomacy. Majlis could help the administration to develop diplomatic ties with other countries within the context of friendship groups with different parliaments. It has also hosted the meetings of Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) with the ultimate goal of creating the Asian Parliament, added Bahonar, who has served as lawmaker for nearly 23 years. If the Asian countries could reach an agreement on the formation of an ‘Asian Parliament’, the initiative could greatly impact multilateral ties between Asian governments, paving a suitable ground improvement of political and economic cooperation between them, he underlined. The seat of APA is currently located in Tehran, the capital city of Iran. This initiative, inter alia, has led to the enhancement numerous diplomatic visits to the country; which has further strengthened ties with Asian states, he added. Underscoring the role of parties in the democratic process, Bahnar said, parliaments should ratify laws to make parties accountable. He also recommended that the best strategy for having active parties is to ratify specific laws. The legislative power should clearly define what it expects from parties and in the same vein recognizes the legal rights of parties, he commented. Today, absence of transparent undertakings in respect of political parties relates to the nonexistence of a mutual commitment between the legislature and parties themselves, the MP noted. He also said the main mistake of the reformists following last June presidential election was that they stepped out of the legitimate and legal lines, causing grave losses to the country. Commenting on the probability of the elimination of reformists from the political scene, Bahonar said that it is naïve to think that reformists would be completely vanished from the political sphere despite their past mistakes. Although compensating for those losses might be difficult or impossible this does not mean that it would be an end to their political activities, he explained. In the events that followed last year’s presidential election, an environment of extremism and radicalism overshadowed Iran’s politics and “I should say that all such radical approaches was in fact wrong.” The post-election atmosphere was not at all based on rational thinking and ‘reason’ was replaced by muscle flexing, he lamented

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