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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Khomeini's First Premier Dies at 87

PARIS -- Former Iranian prime minister Mehdi Bazargan, who headed the first government after the Islamic revolution that overthrew the late Shah in 1979, died Friday, at the age of 87.

Bazargan, a veteran nationalist, died of heart failure on arrival in Zurich, Switzerland, ex-president Abolhassan Banisadr said in a statement.

Bazargan, a university engineering professor and lifelong human rights campaigner, was appointed premier by revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in February 1979.

However he resigned in November of that year in disagreement with the seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran by Islamic militants.

One of the few politicians inside Iran who dared criticize Khomeini's rule and human rights record, he remained a member of parliament until 1984.