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This provision shall go into force in 1920.
Art. 9. When a temporary or absolute vacancy of the office of the President of the Republic shall occur, the executive power shall be exercised by a magistrate who shall be known as the Vice-President of the Republic and who shall be elected on the same day and in the same manner and for the same period as the President.
SECT. 1. Only death, resignation or dismissal of the President shall cause absolute vacancy.
SECT. 2. When the Vice-President should substitute the President during the latter's temporary absence, he shall use the title of VicePresident of the Republic in charge of the executive power; when he should fill the office by reason of absolute vacancy, he shall assume the title of President of the Republic.
SECT. 3. Whenever in this Constitution or in the laws reference is made to the Designates for the executive power, it shall be understood that the magistrate to whom said provisions are applicable is the Vice-President.
SECT. 4. Whenever an absolute vacancy of the office of President or Vice-President occurs, the secretary of State elected by a majority of votes at a cabinet meeting shall take charge provisionally while the Assembly convenes in extraordinary session for the sole purpose of appointing the President and the Vice-President of the Republic for the remainder of the running period.
Art. 10. A citizen who has been elected President of the Republic can not be reelected for the term immediately following. Neither can a citizen, who, having been called to fill the office of President by reason of absolute vacancy of the titular President, has held such office for any length of time, be elected President of the Republic for the term immediately following.
Art. 11. A citizen who has been called to fill the Presidency of the Republic by reason of accidental or temporary absence of the titular President and who should have exercised such office within the six months preceding the day of the election for the new President, can not be elected to that office for the term immediately following.
SECTION. The prohibitions established in regard to the election of President of the Republic shall be made extensive to those persons related to the ineligible citizen within the fourth degree of consanguinity and the second degree of affinity.
ART. 12. The following clause shall be added to Article 110 of the Constitution:
Municipal deputies shall be elected by the executive power out of lists of three presented by the respective municipal councils. When one of the list of three has been elected, the other two shall be held as substitutes in the order established by the executive power.
1 See Articles 79 and following.
ART. 13. Article 120 shall read as follows:
The executive power can not vote an extraordinary allowance, except in the following cases :
1. Whenever any public calamity occurs.
2. Whenever there is need to attend to some obligations which affect national honor or unavoidable expenses for international courtesy.
3. In case of disturbance of public order. These allowances shall be granted by the Cabinet under the joint responsibility of the President and his secretaries of State, and the reasons for this action shall be recorded in each case and submitted to the National Assembly at its ordinary sessions.
Art. 14. The public military or police force is not a deliberative organization. Its members can not take part in electoral matters nor vote. They shall not assemble, unless by order of the proper authority, and shall not make petitions, except upon subjects relating to the good service and the morality of the army or of the police, and in accordance with the laws of their establishment.
ART. 15 (transitory). The deputies elected in 1918 shall remain in office for six years. The following elections shall take place in 1924, and shall continue thereafter to be held every four years, the same days as the elections for President.
Art. 16. Article 139 of the National Constitution is hereby abrogated; Articles 68, 79, 82, 83, 112, 120 and 125 and Clause 4 of Article 67 are subrogated, and Articles 70 and 91 thereof are modified.
The form of government in Persia up to the year 1906 was, in its most important features, similar to that of Turkey. The Shah, within the limitations imposed by the Mohammedan religion, was an absolute ruler, generally regarded by the people as the vice-gerent of the Prophet. As a result of the troubles provoked by the unpopu. larity of the grand vizier (Ain-ed-Douleh), the Shah (Mozaffer-ed. Din) published a rescript 1 under date of 5 August 1906 (14 Jomadin II 1324) announcing that “a National Council (Mejlis) would be elected from among the princes, savants, Kajars, nobles, proprietors, business men and workmen," to deliberate upon necessary reforms. An Electoral Law was published on 9 September (20 Rajab)” and elections were held in the beginning of October. On 7 October the Shah opened in person the First Mejlis. Its leaders rapidly drew up a Constitution, which the Shah signed on 30 December (14 Dulkaada), a few days before his death. His son, Mohammed Ali, succeeded him (8 January 1907). Although the new Shah was opposed to representative government and vigorously opposed all efforts of the constitutionalist party, the latter won over the leaders of the conservatives, and, as a result, the Shah accepted, on 7 October 1907 (29 Shaaban 1325), the Supplementary Constitutional Law.
The First Mejlis was forcibly dissolved, with bloodshed, by the notorious Colonel Liakhoff, the Russian commander of the Shah's Cossack brigade, in the coup d'état of 23 June 1908, and a rescript was issued on 22 November which abolished the Constitution. Civil war became so intense that Russia determined to employ military intervention. The profound impression produced in Persia by the fall of the Sultan Abdul Hamid II at Constantinople caused the Shah to sign a rescript reestablishing the old Constitution“ without any alteration” and opening the parliament, but, before a new electoral law could be drafted, constitutionalist troops occupied Teheran (13 July 1909). Three days later an extraordinary assembly of representatives of the Persian people deposed the Shah Mohammed Ali, and, in conformity with the Constitution, proclaimed
1 English translation of the Shah's firman is given in British and Foreign State Papers, 101 ; p. 526; E. G. BROWNE, The Persian Revolution of 1905–1909 (Cambridge, 1910), pp. 353-354; and E. G. BROWNE, A Brief Narrative of Recent Events in Persia (London, 1909), pp. 65–66.
2 English translation in BROWNE, The Persian Revolution, pp. 355–361, and A Brief Narrative, pp. 67–74; French translation in the Annuaire de législation étrangère, 36 (1906): pp. 754–757.
his minor son, Ahmed Mirza, Shah under a regency, which was terminated on 21 July 1914, when the young Shah was declared to
be of age.
CONSTITUTION OF 30 DECEMBER 1906.2
In the name of God the All Merciful!
Whereas by Our Firman of 5 August 1906, We commanded the institution of a National Assembly for the progress and welfare of the State and nation, the strengthening of the foundations of the kingdom and the carrying out of the laws of His Holiness the Prophet; and whereas, in accordance with the clause by which it is provided that, as each individual member of the State has a right to take part in the superintendence and decision of public affairs, We therefore have permitted the election and appointment of deputies on behalf of the nation; and whereas the National Assembly has been opened through Our gracious benevolence, We have decreed the following articles of constitutional regulations for the National Assembly, including the duties and functions of the Assembly and its limitations and relations towards government departments.
THE INSTITUTION OF THE ASSEMBLY.
ARTICLE 1. The National Assembly has been instituted in accordance with the Imperial Firman of 5 August 1906.
ART. 2. The National Assembly is the representative of the whole Persian nation, which shares in political and domestic affairs.
Art. 3. The National Assembly shall be composed of members elected at Teheran and in the provinces, and the place of their meeting shall be at Teheran.
ART. 4. The number of deputies for Teheran and the provinces is at present, in acordance with an Electoral Law separately promulgated, 162 persons, but if necessary may be increased to 200.
ART. 5. The deputies shall be elected for two whole years. This period shall begin from the day on which all the provincial deputies assemble at Teheran. After the lapse of two years deputies must be again elected, but the people are at liberty to reelect members if they are pleased with them.
1 These introductory paragraphs are based upon E. G. BROWNE, The Persian Constitutional Movement (London, 1918); F. R. DARESTE ET P. DARESTE, Les Constitutions modernes (Paris, 1910), vol. II, pp. 684-685 ; and the two works by BROWNE mentioned in note 1, p. 481. Cf. also The Statesman's Year-book (1916, 1917 and 1918).
2 Translation based upon the English translations in the British Parliamentary Paper Persia. No. 1 (1909) (London, 1909) (Cd. 4581); British and Foreign State Papers, 101: pp. 527-534; E. G. BROWNE, The Persian Revolution of 1905-1909 (Cambridge, 1910), pp. 362–371 ; and E. G. BROWNE, A Brief Narrative of Recent Events in Persia (London, 1909), pp. 75–86.
* See above, p. 481, note 1.
Art. 6. The Teheran deputies shall have the option of instituting the Assembly and starting discussion and debates. Their decisions by majority during the absence of the provincial deputies will be valid, and are to be carried out.
ART. 7. When debates are started, at least two thirds of the members must be present, and when questions are put to the vote, three quarters of the members present give their votes. A majority shall be obtained only when more than half of those present in the Assembly record their votes.
ART. 8. The time of recess and of sitting of the National Assembly shall be fixed by the Assembly itself, according to the internal regulations. After the summer recess, the Assembly must again sit and begin its labors on 8 October, which is the date of the celebration of the opening of the First Assembly.
Art. 9. The National Assembly may convene extraordinary sittings during the recess.
ART. 10. When the Assembly opens, an address must be submitted to His Imperial Majesty, and it shall afterwards have the honor of receiving an answer from that royal and august quarter.
Art. 11. As soon as members of the National Assembly join, they must take and subscribe to the following oath:
Form of the Oath.
We who have signed below invite God to be our witness, and we take oath by the Koran that, so long as the rights of the Assembly and the members of the Assembly are protected and carried out in accordance with these regulations, we will carry out the duties entrusted to us, as well as possible, with the greatest sincerity and straightforwardness, and to our best ability, and we will be true and truthful to our just Sovereign, and will not be traitors to the foundations of sovereignty or the rights of the nation, and we will have no other object but the advantage and the interests of the government and nation of Persia.
ART. 12. No person on any pretext whatever, shall have the right to proceed against any member of the Assembly, without the knowledge and approval of the National Assembly. Should by chance one of the members be guilty of a public offense or crime, and should he be arrested in flagrante delicto, the carrying out of punishment must be with the knowledge of the Assembly.
ART. 13. In order that the result of the discussions of the National Assembly should be carried out, their proceedings must be public. Newspaper reporters and the public have the right to be present and to listen, in accordance with the internal regulations, but without