Iran denies reports Ayatollah Khamenei is dying

Senior Iranian official pushes back on rumors that Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's health is in dangerous decline.

David Rosenberg ,

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

A senior Iranian official on Monday denied claims that his country’s Supreme Leader has transferred power to his son due to a serious decline in health.

Mehdi Fazaeli, who is close to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, tweeted Monday that Khamenei is in good health, rejecting rumors the 81-year-old Islamist leader is facing serious health problems and that he had transferred authority to his son.

“By the grace of God and with the good prayers of devotees, the gentleman is in good health and is busy vigorously carrying out his plan according to his routine.”

Iran’s Fars media outlet pushed Fazaeli’s claim, pushing back against reports that Kamenei’s health is in steep decline.

Over the weekend, reports circulated that Ayatollah Khamenei had transferred his powers to his son, Mojtaba Khamenei.

"Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was scheduled to meet on Friday with the Iranian Leader Khamenei, this meeting between [Khamenei] and President Rouhani was canceled due to the deterioration of Khamenei's health condition," Iranian journalist Momahad Ahwaze tweeted on Saturday.

Ahwaze said that the cause of the Supreme Leader's ill health was not known, but suggested it could be due to prostate cancer. Ahwaze claimed Khamenei deteriorated overnight.

The former president of Iran, Ali Khamenei has ruled as Supreme Leader since the death of Ruhollah Khomeini in 1989.