(JTA) – Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has reportedly been hospitalized with late-stage cancer.
Unofficial reports have emerged that Khamenei, 75, has stage 4 prostate cancer and two years left to live, according to the Jerusalem Post. Khamenei has reportedly had the cancer for a decade, but doctors discovered during a surgery in September 2014 that the cancer had spread.
In Iran, only those close to Khamenei know of the cancer, while the public has not been informed of it. Khamenei holds absolute authority over Iran, including the final say on an accord being negotiated between the United States, world powers and Iran over its nuclear program.
Khamenei became supreme leader in 1989 following the death of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, who led Iran’s 1979 revolution. It is not clear who would succeed Khamenei should he step down or die.