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Mohammad Mosaddeq , also transcribed Mossadeq, Mossadegh, Mosaddiq, etc. (in Persian: محمد مصدق ) (Tehran, May 19, 1882 – Ahmedabad, March 5, 1967) was a democratically elected prime minister in Iran and who ruled between 1951 and 1953.
On March 20, 1951, he nationalized oil, after blocking Iran and exerting other pressures, the United States and Great Britain financed a coup organized by the CIA and encouraged by MI6 in 1953. , which overthrew Mosaddeq and established a monarchical dictatorship headed by Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
In 1943 he was elected as deputy representing Tehran at the 14th Parliament. At that time Mohammad Reza Pahlevi occupied the throne. He was elected again deputy in the XVI Parliament, participating first as a member and then being elected president of the Petroleum Committee.
The nationalization of oil
In 1951 Prime Minister Mohammad Sa’ed signed an annex to the 1933 Oil Treaty with the United Kingdom (Gas-Golshayan Treaty). When the XV Parliament refused to ratify the agreement, the clauses that affected the Iranian interests were known by the population and Sa’ed had to resign. He was succeeded by Ali Mansur, who followed the same fate by insisting on ratification.
The Chief of the Army, Haj Ali Razmara, then assumed as prime minister, who once again insisted on ratification in front of the 16th Parliament. It was then that Mosaddeq, at that time president of the Parliament’s Petroleum Commission, who declared to the press that the treaties of d’Arcy, of 1933 and the Annex to the latter were null and void.
Several sectors then supported the desire to nationalize the oil that came out of the statements of Mosaddeq. Britain reacted then looking to economically suffocate Iran, threatening to boost the independence of the Iranian judiciary, closing two British banks and demanding the repayment of a debt of one million pounds and the credits granted to the Iranian merchants. For its part, the British oil company took its capital out of circulation.
In those circumstances Razmara died in a terrorist attack executed by Jalil Tahmasbí, of the organization Fedayines del Islam founded by Navvab Safaví and allied to the ayatollah Kashaní – ally in turn of Mosaddeq-, which impelled a general insurrection against the influence British In that dynamic the Gas-Golshayan Treaty was repealed and Mosaddeq elected prime minister.
One of his first steps was to decree the nationalization of the Anglo-Persian Oil Company on March 20, 1951, approved by the parliamentary majority and ratified five days later by the Senate. That company leaves the country within a week.
In the face of Iran’s decision on its oil, Britain escalated the conflict by forbidding it to sell the oil and threatening to send the war fleet. He also questioned the nationalization of oil before the International Court of The Hague and the Security Council of the United Nations.
Mosaddeq made before the Security Council a historic defense of Iran’s rights over its oil, which led to the international body’s lack of definition to await the decision of the international tribunal. In June 1952, Mosaddeq again personally defended Iran’s rights over its oil before the International Court, which ruled on July 20 deciding that it had no competence to understand in that conflict.
The Iranian triumph was attributed to the personal ability of Mosaddeq, who was considered the man of the year by the magazine Timime that same year of 1951.
In July 1952, faced with the shah, Mosaddeq resigned, unleashing large mobilizations in his support that forced the shah to reinstate him in his post on July 21. Mosaddeq asked the Parliament powers to make profound changes in all fields, which were implemented through some 80 laws on security, corruption, justice, national budget, housing, health, armed forces, social justice, and civil liberties. On December 15, he nationalized the telephone service and the fishing activity, which was then concessioned to the Soviet Union.
Coup d’etat and death
At the end of 1952, MI6 agents approached their colleagues at the newly founded CIA to propose that Mossaddeq be forcibly removed from power, and on August 18, 1953, the US agency executed the support of the British Operation Ajax, as it was called the coup d’état with which he deposed Mosaddeq and restored the shah to power.
On December 21, 1953, Mosaddeq was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment in solitary confinement in a military prison, well short of the death sentence imposed by prosecutors. When they read it, he raised his head and said in a low voice, full of sarcasm: “The verdict of this court has increased my historical glories, I am very grateful that you have condemned me.” Truly, tonight the Iranian nation understood the meaning of constitutionalism . “
Once the sentence was completed, he had to remain confined in his villa in Ahmedabad, practically until the day of his death. On February 4, 1967, he died of cancer, was buried in his own home to avoid a political furor.
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