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TEHRAN One of this country's most prominent conservative clerics has chided Iranians for an array of modern "vices," including divorce and choosing to marry later, which he said could draw God's wrath on Iran. In his Friday sermon in the capital, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati also singled out Marlboro cigarettes that he said were imported by a Jewish-owned company.

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A cigarette vendor in Tehran — Photo: Kamshots

Jannati, secretary of the Guardian Council, which must approve all legislation and elections, declared in Tehran's weekly congregational prayers, "I am warning you our situation is not good and am concerned God will make us suffer."
Among the vices he enumerated were "usury, bribery, administrative corruption, the prevalence of divorce," Jaam-e Jam, the website of the state broadcaster reported.
The cleric declared that there was a 1979 revolution in Iran because the people "wanted the rule of justice, spirituality and God, and this system needs piety today." Is it right, he asked, for doctors "to ask for a little something under the table," a reference to accusations of bribery in the medical field.
The cleric, a firm ally of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, is known for his prolific denunciations of many things inside and outside Iran. On Friday, he asked why Iran was importing Marlboro cigarettes. "A Jewish firm imports Marlboros, and they give people 12 million of these cigarettes," Jannati said. "That is not right."
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2022 Kharkiv Pride Parade

Laura Valentina Cortés Sierra, Sophia Constantino and Lila Paulou

Welcome to Worldcrunch’s LGBTQ+ International. We bring you up-to-speed each week on a topic you may follow closely at home, but can now see from different places and perspectives around the world. Discover the latest news on everything LGBTQ+ — from all corners of the planet. All in one smooth scroll!

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