Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (
Persian: اکبر هاشمی رفسنجانی Akbar Hāshemī Rafanjānī), Hashemi Bahramani (هاشمی بهرمانی) (
2017) was an influential
politician. He has been the Chairman of the
Expediency Discernment Council of Iran from 1989 until his death in 2017.
Forbes magazine listed Rafsanjani in their list of richest people in the world and has written that as the real power behind the
Iranian government, he "has more or less run the Islamic Republic for the past 24 years."
 His wealth has earned him the infamous nickname of Akbar Shah in Iran.
He served as
President of Iran from
1997, losing on the second ballot to
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in
the 2005 election on his attempt for a third term in office. After this, he has tried to use his position in the Expediency Council to denounce President Ahmadinejad's administration. He said he would do some privatizations and change foreign policy. However, President Ahmadinejad has noted Rafsanjani's failure to make a difference between privatization and self takeover of government-owned companies. Ahmadinejad has also commmented on the foreign policies of Rafsanjani's administration which lead to
sanctions against Iran in
Currently, one of his sons has been accused of receiving a
bribe. Analysts expect that his son will not be put on trial, however.
Rafsanjani died on January 8, 2017 in
Tehran from a
heart attack, aged 82.