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The Boston Globe

World

Iran’s health chief fired after criticizing drug import problem

NEW YORK — Iran’s president on Thursday dismissed his health minister, the only woman to serve in the Cabinet since the 1979 Islamic revolution, after she publicly criticized the government’s response to acute shortages of medicine imports, an indirect consequence of the Western sanctions imposed on the country.

Accounts in the state-run news media of the dismissal of the minister, Marzieh Vahid-Dastjerdi, did not provide an explanation for it. Iran’s Press TV website said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had appointed a caretaker health minister, Mohammad Hassan Tariqat-Monfared, and had told him in a presidential decree that the reduction of people’s health care expenses was among ‘‘the main priorities of this important ministry.’’

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