Tehran, Iran President Mohammad Khatami denounced hard-liners Saturday for intensifying their campaign against his reform program, saying their admiration for "Taliban-style Islam" was unacceptable, the official Islamic Republic News Agency reported.
Khatami's comments came during a rare news conference with Iran's domestic media.
"People who admire Taliban behavior insult the late Imam (Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, leader of 1979 Islamic Revolution), and their stance is unacceptable," IRNA quoted Khatami as saying.
"We don't want Taliban-style Islam or security. We are the ones setting an example to the world," he said.
Khatami has pledged to pursue his widely popular political and social reform program. He has been frustrated by conservatives who control the judiciary, police, state television and radio and the oversight group, the Guardian Council.