Constitution of the Revolutionary Guards

15/6/1361 [September 7, 1982]

Section 1: Goal

Article 1: The Revolutionary Guards is an institution under the Leader’s supreme command. Its goal is to protect Iran’s Islamic Revolution and its achievements and persistently struggle to achieve the divine aims, spread the rule of the law of God in accordance with the Islamic Republic of Iran’s laws, and to fully strengthen the Islamic Republic’s defensive foundations through cooperation with other armed forces and through the military training and organizing of popular forces.

Section 2: Mission

Article 2: Legal struggle with agents and currents which aim to sabotage or destroy the Islamic Republican system or act against the Iranian Islamic Revolution.

Article 3: Legal struggle with agents who try to eliminate the rule of the Islamic Republic’s laws through force and violence.

Article 4: Taking the same measures which other security forces take towards disarming those who carry and keep arms and supplies without legal permission.

Article 5: Cooperation with the security forces when necessary towards establishing order and security and the rule of law in the country.

Note: The Revolutionary Guards shall act as bailiff for the Judiciary in matters of the aforementioned missions in the abovementioned articles.

Article 6: Cooperation with other security forces to protect political and religious locations and individuals as directed by the neighborhood security council. (The boundaries of duties and powers of this council shall be in accordance with the law to be ratified by the Islamic Consultative Council.)

Article 7: Cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran’s army when necessary in order to protect the Islamic Republic of Iran’s independence, territorial integrity, and Islamic Republican system.

Note: the necessary articles and the nature of the Revolutionary Guards’ cooperation with the army shall be determined by the Supreme Defense Council.

Article 8: Cooperation with the nationwide intelligence organs shall be in accordance with a law to be ratified by the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 9: Planning, organizing, administering, commanding, and implementing the ideological, political, and military education of the members of the Basij of the Abased shall be in accordance with Islamic values.

Article 10: Participation in aid operations in the event of disasters or accidents and providing support for aid, education, production, and the Jihad for Reconstruction services in times of peace shall be at the request of the government and in full accordance with the values of Islamic justice, as stipulated by the Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme Council, such that that it not lose the military preparedness required to fulfill its missions .

Article 11: The training and education of members of the Revolutionary Guards [shall be] in accordance with Islamic teachings and values, based on the guidance of the Velayat-e Faqih in the ideological, political, and military realms in order to obtain the strength necessary to perform the duties assigned to them.

Section 3: Organizations

Article 12: In accordance with Article 110 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the supreme leadership of the Revolutionary Guards belongs to the Leader.

Article 13: The organizational pillars of the Revolutionary Guards consist of:

a)      The Revolutionary Guards’ Commander-in-Chief

b)      The Ministry of the Revolutionary Guards

c)      The Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme Council

Article 14: The Revolutionary Guards have two lines of organizational structure, command and ministerial, whose responsibilities devolve upon the Commander-in-Chief and the Minister of the Revolutionary Guards, respectively.

Article 15: The Commander-in-Chief is responsible in the spheres of personnel, military training, ideological-political training, propaganda and publications, provisions, logistics, intelligence, planning operations, and matters related to the Basij of the Abased. The units described below are responsible for executing these tasks.

a)      The Personnel Unit is responsible for forecasting needs in human resources, accepting them, and managing them.

b)      The Military Training Unit is responsible for planning and implementing military (individual or unit) and specialist training for members of the Revolutionary Guards.

c)      The Ideological-Political Educational Unit is responsible for determining the content of the ideological-political education of the members of the Revolutionary Guards and the Basij, as well as planning and implementing the above education and training and recruiting trainers.

d)      The Propaganda and Publications Unit is responsible for all propaganda and publications which are published and distributed in the name of the Revolutionary Guards through mass media (in the form of books, pamphlets, magazines, journals, newspapers, statements, analyses, tapes, films, and radio or television broadcasts.)

e)      The Provisioning and Logistics Unit is responsible for handling needs and guarding and distributing provisions, equipment and the foundational needs of the Revolutionary Guards.

f)       The Intelligence Unit is responsible for performing duties, the laws governing which shall be determined by the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

g)      The Planning and Operations Unit is responsible for preparing operational plans, implementing communications operations and dispatching forces.

h)      The Basij of the Abased Unit’s duties are as described in Section Four of these bylaws.

i)       The Engineering Unit is responsible for weapons and military engineering, non-military engineering, mapping, geography, communications, and electronics.

Note: in sections c and d, the substance and programs concerning ideological and political education and publications and propaganda must be confirmed by the Leader or a representative who had been determined by the Revolutionary Guards.

Article 16: The Ministry of the Revolutionary Guards is responsible in the administrative, financial, legal, parliamentary, and provisioning fields. In order to fulfill these responsibilities, it must consult as follows:

a)      Administration and financial consultation is responsible for accepting personnel needed by the Ministry of the Revolutionary Guards, carrying out the Revolutionary Guards’ personnel duties, balancing credit, organizing the budget, communicating the budget ratified to the sectors, implementing the budget (including distributing credit and keeping records), accounting, and supervision and control over expenditures.

b)      Parliamentary-legal consultation is responsible for preparing and organizing bills needed by the Revolutionary Guards; establishing relations between the Revolutionary Guards, the government and the Majles; communicating laws and regulations to the Revolutionary Guards; supervision over the proper execution of laws and agreements; defense of the Revolutionary Guards in legal centers; and the receipt of the government’s political instructions and their communication to the Revolutionary Guards.

c)      Logistical and engineering consultation is responsible for preparing and securing for provisional and logistical needs, establishing necessary institutions, and executing engineering instructions.

Article 17: The Minister of the Revolutionary Guards is tasked with preparing the Ministry of the Revolutionary Guards’ organizational plans and bringing them to ratification by the Council of Ministers, with the cooperation of the nationwide Organization of Administrative and Employment Affairs and within the framework of these bylaws.

Note: This ministry’s budget shall be allocated at the level of 112,000 Revolutionary Guards.

Article 18: The Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards was organized with the goal of coordinating the command and ministerial spheres and preparing and agreeing on strategies, plans, and programs and explaining the duties of sectors and instructions in command centers within the context of the council’s bylaws. It is to be composed of officials as listed below and called the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards. Its resolutions must be brought to the attention of the Leader or an appointed representative of his in the Revolutionary Guards. If it is not vetoed by the Leader or his representative, its implementation is mandatory.

a)      The Commander-in-Chief

b)      The Minister of the Revolutionary Guards

c)      The Chief of the Central Staff

d)      The Officer of the Basij of the Abased Unit

e)      The Officer of the Intelligence Unit

f)       The Officer of the Planning and Operations Unit

g)      The Officer of the Personnel Unit

h)      The Officer of the Provisions and Logistics Unit

i)       The Officer of the Propaganda and Publications Unit

j)       The Officer of the Ideological-Political Unit

k)      A representative (should he exist) of the Leader

Article 19: Other officials from the Central Staff and advisors to the Minister of the Revolutionary Guards Units may participate in meetings of the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards without the right to vote.

Article 20: Meetings of the Supreme Council held in the absence of the Commander-in-Chief (or, in his absence, the Deputy Commander-in-Chief) and the Minister of the Revolutionary Guards (or, in his absence, the Deputy Minister of the Revolutionary Guards) and the representative, should he exist, of the Leader (and in his absence, his deputy) shall not be recognized.

Note: Meetings of the Supreme Council will be recognized if two-thirds of its members are present. Its decisions will be by majority vote.

Article 21: Meetings of the Supreme Council will be held on a weekly basis. If necessary and at the request of the Commander-in-Chief, the Minister of the Revolutionary Guards or a representative (should he exist) of the Leader, an extraordinary session can be organized.

Article 22: The Supreme Council’s decisions shall be communicated to the sphere of command through the chain of organizational hierarchy and then be implemented.

Article 23: The Revolutionary Guards’ Commander-in-Chief is obliged to communicate the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards’ decision to the relevant units within 48 hours for implementation. Should there be a violation of its decisions, the matter shall be reported to the Leader.

Article 24: The Central Staff organizes Personnel Affairs, Military Education, Ideological-Political Education, Publications and Propaganda, Intelligence, Planning and Operations, the Basij of the Abased, and Engineering units of the Central Staff. They are to be administered under the leadership of the Chief of the Staff and help the Central Staff of the Commander-in-Chief execute the Revolutionary Guards’ aims through planning, support and supervision. The officers of the units of the Central Staff are consultants to the Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guards in their respective field of expertise, and the Central Staff will perform its duties with the aid of the staffs of other ranks.

Article 25: In ranks from the Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guards down to whatever rank the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards considers necessary, staffs shall be organized along with a council composed of: each rank of the commander or the deputy of that rank, a representative of the Leader’s representative (should he exist), the chief of the staff, and officers of the units of the staffs. The sphere of these councils’ responsibilities shall be determined by the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards.

Note: The Chief of the Staff and the officers of the staff units shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the commander of each rank and with the confirmation of the Commander-in-Chief.

Article 26: The Commander-in-Chief’s departments. In order to help the Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guards in performing his duties as commander, the following departments shall be organized. Their officers and members shall be appointed and dismissed by him.

a)      The Command Department shall be responsible for administering departmental, secretarial, and public relations affairs of the Commander-in-Chief.

b)      The Department for Investigation and Review shall be responsible for helping the Commander-in-Chief to review the suitability of people who have been recommended for appointment as well as informing him on how the various ranks of the Revolutionary Guards are performing.

Article 28: The command structure of the Revolutionary Guards is centralized, and protecting the chain of command and observing total order and discipline is necessary. The Revolutionary Guards’ chain of command is composed of:

      1) The Leader

      2)  The Revolutionary Guards’ Commander-in-Chief

      3)  Regional commanders

      4)  District commanders

      5)  Base commanders

      6)  Guardhouse commanders

Article 29: After the Leader, the Revolutionary Guards’ Commander-in-Chief is the Revolutionary Guards’ highest executive post. He may be appointed and dismissed by the Leader and is responsible before him in all matters which devolve upon him. All ranks of the Revolutionary Guards are responsible before the Commander-in-Chief. The Commander-in-Chief is responsible for the scrupulous implementation of the Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme Council’s bylaws and decisions in the sphere of command.

Article 30: Guidance in operations, appointments and dismissals in the Revolutionary Guards is the Revolutionary Guards’ Commander-in-Chief’s responsibility.

Note: The appointment and dismissal of regional commanders is to be done upon the recommendation of the Commander-in-Chief and ratification by the Supreme Council of the Revolutionary Guards.

Article 31: The Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guards shall appoint or dismiss the Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary Guards, the Chief of the Central Staff, and the officers of the units of the Central Staff subject to the confirmation of the Leader or whatever representative in the Revolutionary Guards he has appointed.

Note 1: The officers of the Ideological-Political Education and the Publications and Propaganda units, and the officers of the ranks below, them shall be appointed by clerics approved by the Leader or the representative he appointed in the Revolutionary Guards.

Note 2: Should the Leader appoint a representative in the Revolutionary Guards, he shall take precedence in taking on responsibility for the Ideological-Political Education and the Publications and Propaganda units, with the Leader’s agreement.

Article 32: The deputy commander takes on all the commander’s duty in the latter’s absence. In his presence, he serves as an aide to the Commander-in-Chief in the Revolutionary Guards’ department.

Article 33: Should a representative be appointed in the Revolutionary Guards by the Leader, he may:

a)      Supervise all the Revolutionary Guards’ affairs and the commanders’ decisions from the perspective of the sharia’s values and the Leader’s guidance. Should he determine that there be any manner of violation, the officials are obliged to reconsider their decision in light of the aforementioned values.

Note: In order for there to be supervision over all the Revolutionary Guards’ ranks, the Leader shall appoint a suitable cleric for each rank as his representative.

b)      Cooperate with representatives whom the Leader appointed in other armed forces in order to create coordination and brotherly relations between the armed forces.

Article 34: The Conditions of the Revolutionary Guard. Someone is called a Revolutionary Guard who has entered the Revolutionary Guards, considers an all-sided jihad for the sake of God and to protect the Islamic Revolution and its achievements to be a duty under the sharia, and fulfills the following conditions:

a)      Belief in the foundations of Islam, the Islamic Revolution, and the Islamic Republican system.

b)      Belief and commitment in action to the velayat-e faqih.

c)      Commitment in action to Islam’s commandments, the Islamic Republic’s laws, and following Islam’s moral values.

d)      Good repute and lack of a bad record.

Note: Revolutionary Guard commanders, particularly Commanders-in-Chief, must, in addition to the aforementioned conditions, have the necessary acquaintance with issues of ideology, politics, and expertise and enjoy an adequate managerial capacity.

Section 4: The bylaws of the Unit of the Basij of the Abased

Article 35: The goal of organizing the Unit of the Basij of the Abased is to create the necessary strengths in all individuals who believe in the Constitution and the Islamic Republic’s goals in order to defend the country and the Islamic Republican system, as well as aid the people in the event of disaster or unexpected events in coordination with the relevant authorities.

Article 36: To implement Article 9 of the Revolutionary Guards’ Bylaws, the Basij’s duties are as follows:

1)      Military training to strengthen the defense of the Islamic Republic of Iran and its territorial integrity.

2)      Ideological and political training and education in required fields of expertise.

3)      Organization of the Basij members.

4)      Preparing defense plans in cooperation with the other relevant organs.

Note: All organizations and organs under various names in the field of military training and preparation that are active in the people’s Basij, except for public conscription, shall be dissolved and these activities shall be concentrated in the Revolutionary Guards.

Article 37: All cities, classified by size and population, shall be divided into several regions of resistance. Each such region shall be subdivided into several districts of resistance. Each district of resistance shall be divided into bases of resistance. The bases of resistance shall include organized groups.

Note: The country’s towns, hamlets, and villages shall have Basij resistance cells.

Article 38: The Revolutionary Guards shall organize neighborhood resistance cells with the cooperation of the neighborhood’s clergy, trustees, and legal neighborhood councils at the level of every neighborhood.

Note: Basij resistance cells are the smallest units of the Basij.

Article 39: Local Basij units must be distributed in such a way that resistance cells will be organized in all neighborhoods in the shortest amount of time.

Article 40: In the Basij’s executive ranks, for each layer and craft covered by that Basij, one prominent and reliable person and a prominent neighborhood cleric in charge of the relevant Basij unit shall organize a Basij council. This council shall be a consultative council for the Basij official and be his ultimate authority.

Note: The council’s cleric in each rank must be approved by the Leader or the representative he appoints in the Basij or the representative of the Leader’s representative. The other members of the council shall be appointed through the Basij’s official and the cleric of the corresponding council.

Article 41: Members of the Army of Twenty Million are categorized as follows:

a)      Ordinary members. The general classes believing in the Islamic Republic’s constitution and the Islamic Revolution’s goals who enter the Army of Twenty Million (the Revolutionary Guards’ Basij of the Abased) as ordinary members – after passing a period of education –  are to engage in support and military activities in time of war as well as welfare, service, social, political, and intelligence activities within the framework of the laws and regulations.

b)      Active members. These are people who are organized after passing periods of general education and who are consolidated while they continue their studies and special programs.

Note: Ordinary and active members are personnel of unconfirmed cadres and do not receive a fixed salary.

c)      Special members. These are active members who have the qualifications to be a Revolutionary Guard and have an educational and personal record and, when needed, shall be placed at the disposal of the Revolutionary Guards on a full-time basis. These individuals hold a special card and are in the Revolutionary Guards’ organized ranks.

Article 42: All individuals and officers of the staff units of the Basij and commanders of the Basij’s centers and commanders of the regions of resistance (in the cities) shall be Revolutionary Guards. The districts of resistance shall be the Revolutionary Guards or members of the special members of the Basij. The bases of resistance commanders shall be special members [of the Basij] and the commanders of the resistance groups shall be active members.

Article 43: According to Article 172 of the Constitution, crimes related to special military or security duties by members of the Revolutionary Guards shall be investigated in military trials, but their civilian crimes or crimes which they committed as bailiffs for the prosecutor shall be investigated in civilian trials.

Article 44: The people’s complaints and protests concerning members of the Revolutionary Guards, sectors [of it], or bylaws acted upon by it shall be reviewed by an administrative court of justice.

Article 45: The Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme Council is obliged within six months to prepare bailiffs to purge the Revolutionary Guards and present them as a bill to the Islamic Consultative Assembly.

Article 46: Should a member of the Revolutionary Guard be absent without leave for over fifteen days in peacetime or five days in wartime, he shall be considered a deserter and shall be pursued by the military courts and subject to punishment under the law. The punishment for desertion shall be less than the punishment for desertions according to the disciplinary regulations ratified by the Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme Council.

Article 47: The Revolutionary Guards follow the velayat-e faqih politically and ideologically and are independent of all political parties and groups, nor shall they have a political character in society, or act as a political party or organization.

Article 48: Members of the Revolutionary Guards have no right to join any political party or group or organization. Should they continue to be members of any such, they must be expelled from the Revolutionary Guards.

Article 49: The basic needs of daily life, housing, and medicine of a Revolutionary Guard and his family during his term of service or impairment or retirement shall be guaranteed. Its stipulations shall be determined in the bylaws, which shall be passed by the Revolutionary Guards’ Supreme council.

The above bylaws, containing forty-nine articles and sixteen notes, were passed in a meeting on Monday, the fifteenth of Shahrivar, one thousand three hundred and sixty one [September 6, 1982] of the Islamic Consultative Assembly and were upheld by the Guardian Council.

President of the Islamic Consultative Assembly, [Ali-]Akbar Hashemi[-Rafsanjani]


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