Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei (20)


Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- The Presidential Election (Arseh Sevom)

The 8 Approved CandidatesThe disqualifications of former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s former chief of staff Esfandiar Rahim Mashai were big news, if not entirely surprising. 

The electoral field is now dominated by hardliners loyal to the Supreme Leader.

However, the fictional campaign of Zahra continues to pick up steam with the endorsements of prominent lawyers Shirin Ebadi and Mehrengiz Kar. 

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Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Rafsanjani Shakes Up The Race

A fistfight in the Minister of Interior after President Ahmadinejad's right-hand man, Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai, registered for the Presidential race on Saturday --- Rahim-Mashai is on the right while Ahmadinejad is in the centre of the photograph

Presidential Election Watch: Rafsanjani's Campaign "Manifesto"

Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani has set out his opening statement for the campaign.

The highlight? A challenge to the Supreme Leader's declaration of the successful "resistance" of the Islamic Republic, with Rafsanjani saying that he is entering race because "the country is in condition equivalent to eight years of war with the Baathist Party in Iraq".

Rafsanjani also emphasised that he chose to run based on the requests of "many senior scholars and clerics" as well as different groups within the society. He continued:

I offer unity, trust, and the ability to bring together all factions within the family of the system and the Islamic Revolution, ensuring compassionate leaders and experienced managers.

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Iran Live Coverage: The Supreme Leader Admits A Crisis

See also Iran Feature: The Top 10 Stories of 2012 --- A Currency Falls, Sanctions Expand, and Political Prisoners Continue to Resist
EA Special: 10 Predictions for 2013 --- Assad Gone, an Angry Middle East, and Little Change on "Human Rights"
Monday's Iran Live Coverage: All-Is-Well Oil Alerts

2040 GMT: Labour Front. More than 500 workers at the Safa Pipe factory have begun a fourth round of protests over conditions and the delayed payment of wages.

A worker said the demonstration began Saturday after employees were not paid in more than six months.

1940 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Popular singer and activist Arya Aramnejad was summoned today to serve his 91-day sentence.

Aramnejad has been detained on several occasions, including a five-month stay in prison from November 2011 to April 2012.

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The Latest from Iran (22 August): Kim Jong Un is Coming to Tehran! (Or Not).

See also Iran Feature: The Week in Civil Society --- Political Prisoners, Israel Loves Iran, and Looking Too Much Like Ahmadinejad
The Latest from Iran (21 August): All Hail the Supreme Leader

2027 GMT: Oil Watch. Iran's two biggest oil buyers, China and India, sharply cut imports in July.

Beijing's purchases fell nearly a third in July from an 11-month high in June, while shipments by India, declined more than 40%.

The Indian cutback is probably linked to difficulties in insurance cover for Iranian tankers, following the European Union's imposition of sanctions on 1 July. This month Indian refiners have confirmed the first shipments from Iran, to begin in September, using Iranian cover.

The Chinese drop may be tied to a six-month US waiver from sanctions, issued on 28 June, for Beijing's reduced shipments in early 2012. A continued bounce-back in purchases might have jeopardised renewal of the waiver.

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Iran Analysis: Is This the Last Elected President? (Alam)

A trial balloon floated by Iran’s Supreme Leader last year is coming closer to reality and with it, the prospect that Iran’s political system will become even less representative of popular will.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei first raised the idea in October of abolishing the directly elected Iranian presidency by highlighting the regime’s flexibility for institutional change. At the time, his statement elicited an array of reactions from across the political spectrum. His allies in the parliament and the Guardian Council, a body that vets candidates for elected office, swiftly endorsed the proposal, assuring Iranians that well-established legal mechanisms existed for such a change.

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The Latest from Iran (4 August): The Regime Admits Its "Economic War"

Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati1635 GMT: Fraud Watch. Khorasan News reports that an embezzlement of 15 billion Toman (about $12.5 million at official rate) has been discovered in a Bonyad Shahid (foundation).

1335 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Student activist Bahareh Hedayat, serving a 9 1/2-year sentence, has returned to prison after a short furlough.

Hedayat was arrested in December 2009, just after demonstrations on National Student Day.

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The Latest from Iran (20 July): Reformists and the Next Election

See also The Latest from Iran (19 July): Nervously Watching Syria

1342 GMT: Trade Watch. Fars reports that the first load of Indian wheat exchanged in barter for oil has been distributed among Tehran bakeries.

Just as interesting is the jibe by the website that domestic wheat mills are working at 50% capacity.

1253 GMT: Your Tehran Friday Prayer Update. Hojatoleslam Kazem Seddiqi is pleased to tell the audience, "Today the whole world envies us for the Supreme Leader as the defender of religion. In Islamic society, the ruler is like qibla [the direction faced by a Muslim during prayer]."

Seddiqi added, "Those who don't accept the Supreme Leader, don't accept the rule of God."

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The Latest from Iran (14 July): Sanctions Watch

Mehr shows how Iran could block the Strait of Hormuz with its missiles --- an interactive infographic has also been posted

See also The Latest from Iran (13 July): Revolutionary Enemy-Breaking Queues for Chicken

2049 GMT: Economy Watch. We started today with good-news stories from Fars about 5000 Iranians registering to buy the new automobile of the Iran Khodro Company and a "quality appreciation certificate" presented to Khodro by Renault (see 0600 GMT). We end today with this different perspective from AFP:

Iran's auto production fell by more than 36 percent over the past three months, the industry ministry was quoted by ISNA news agency as saying on Saturday, citing "lack of money".

Production fell to about 241,500 vehicles in the first quarter of the Iranian year (March 21 to June 20), according to the figures.

Iran built more than 1.5 million vehicles in 2011/2012.

The decline coincides with the halt of parts deliveries to Iran by French manufacturer Peugeot because of Western sanctions.

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The Latest from Iran (2 May): Books and Politics

Banned: Cheshmeh Publishing House1910 GMT: Media Watch. Reza Moghadassi, the managing editor of the conservative site Mehr, has criticised the Government's media law for "restricting the free flow of information more and more each day".

Moghadessia claimed that the Government's decree would allow the Ministry of Communications to filter a website immediately after a ban was issued by the Media Supervisory Council.

1850 GMT: Gasoline and Price Rises Don't Mix. Earlier today (see 0930 GMT) we reported that the price of subsidised gasoline is set to quadruple from 100 Toman (just over $0.08 at official rate) to 400 Toman ($0.33).

Now ISNA reports that people are rushing gas stations in Tehran to buy the 100 Toman fuel while they can. There has been a 600% increase in consumption in the past two days, with police at some stations to control crowds.

1840 GMT: Parliament v. President. Speaking at a meeting of the Unity Front faction, leading MP Gholam Reza Mesbahi Moghaddam has described three Parliamentary moves against the Government to stop price rises.

However, it appears that the Guardian Council may have raised the stakes on another front. Spokesman Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei said the Council has rejected a Parliamentary measure to spur impeachment of the President if he fails to answer more than six questions satisfactorily.

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The Latest from Iran (13 December): Shoes Are Thrown at the President

2140 GMT: Parliament Watch. Speaking at Tehran University today, MP Ali Motahari, a vocal critic of the Ahmadinejad administration, has criticised the crackdown on students after the 2009 Presidential election. Considering why the repression occurred and why it continues, he said that there is an atmosphere of "fear and terror" in the Iranian Parliament because of the actions of some legislators.

2135 GMT: Sanctions Watch. The executive board of Nokia Siemens Networks has said that it will not take on any new business in Iran and will gradually reduce its existing commitments from 1 January 2012.

The Finnish company said in a letter to its staff in Iran that the decision was taken because US-led sanctions "make it almost impossible for Nokia Siemens Networks to do business with Iranian customers".

Nokia Siemens has been criticised for providing telecommunications equipment allowing the Iranian regime to maintain surveillance of protesters after the 2009 Presidential election.

2100 GMT: Economy Watch. Former Minister of Labor Hossein Kamali has claimed that more than 50% of Iran's workers now live below the poverty line.

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