Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (451)


Iran Analysis: Presidential Election --- Rafsanjani and Khatami Put Supreme Leader in a Corner

Hashemi Rafsanjani & Mohammad KhatamiEither Ayatollah Khamenei accepts former President Hashemi Rafsanjani's candidacy, which will shake up an already unsettled process and possibly put it beyond the Supreme Leader's control...

...or the Supreme Leader black-balls Rafsanjani, likely incurring blame for blocking one of Iran's highest-profile politicians.

As an EA correspondent summarised, "The Supreme Leader is between a rock and a hard place."

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Iran Today: "Supreme Leader is the Ultimate Decision-Maker"

Khatami Watch

Reformist former president Mohammad Khatami has said that mutual trust between the government and the Iranian people has disappeared during Ahmadinejad's presidency.

Khatami also said that the hopes and trust of the middle classes and young people had also eroded and must be restored. Iran's problems would not be solved, he added, without leadership and coordination.

Khatami said that Iran must first and foremost get over its "atmosphere of suspicion", and that currently a tough security atmosphere prevailed in Iran.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Leader's brother, Ayatollah Seyyed Mohammad Khamenei, has told the Fars News Agency that Iran's enemies are planning a complex plot ahead of the June presidential election, involving former president Hashemi Rafsanjani.

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Iran Exclusive: Rafsanjani Prepares for a Presidential Campaign...and a Challenge to the Supreme Leader

In recent days, we have been tracking the indications that former President Hashemi Rafsanjani --- reversing his position from March --- will stand in the Presidential election in June.

Now we can confirm, on the basis of absolutely reliable information, that Rafsanjani is close to a campaign.

What's more, he and his supporters are doing so in part as a challenge to the Supreme Leader. Further, others see the campaign as support for detained opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, the main challenge to President Ahmadinejad in the disputed election in 2009.

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Iran Live: An All-Is-Well Analysis of the Presidential Election

1731 GMT: Oil Watch Ship industry sources say Iran is storing millions of barrels of oil on tankers in its territorial waters amid sanctions.

Ship industry sources gave varying estimates on how much oil Iran was storing at sea, but all said the volume was higher.

Data from maritime intelligence publisher IHS Fairplay estimated 10 of Iran's supertankers, each able to carry up to 2 million barrels of crude, were storing oil, together with one smaller tanker able to carry up to 1 million barrels.

The data showed a further two supertankers were also probably deployed on floating storage, based on the length of time they were stationary, meaning as much as 25 million barrels in total.

The vessels, all belonging to Iran's top tanker operator NITC, were located close to the Iranian oil terminals of Assaluyeh, Kharg Island and Bahregan, the data showed.

Another ship industry source estimated 17 NITC vessels were storing crude oil, mainly on supertankers, while another said 15 tankers were storing crude oil around Iran, with volumes close to 30 million barrels.

Last year Iran's floating storage was estimated to have reached at least 33 million barrels before buyers were found.

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Iran Live: Supreme Leader's Men Try to Regain Election Initiative

The Supreme Leader's "2+1 Committee": Ayatollah Khamenei's aide Ali Akbar Velayati, leading MP and Supreme Leader relative Gholam Ali Haddad Adel, and Tehran Mayor Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf

1035 GMT: Foreign Affairs Watch (Egyptian Edition). Is this a sign of Tehran's disappointment that developments in Cairo have not gone quite as hoped since the fall of President Mubarak in February 2011?

Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said today, “If we want the Iran-Egypt ties to officially reach a favorable level, which is expected by the people of both countries, we should have patience."

The spokesman continued, “It has been declared by Iran on numerous occasions that we have no restrictions on establishing ties with Egypt and that we are ready to resume the relations, but the internal situation in this country (Egypt) is not yet prepared."

Soon after Mubarak's downfall, the Supreme Leader declared that Egypt was at the centre of an "Islamic Awakening", following the model of the 1979 revolution in Iran, but political ties have not developed as quickly or as closely as Tehran hoped.

Even the limited step of encouraging tourism has run into trouble this month, with flights of Iranians into Egypt halted almost as soon as they began amid protests by Egyptians.

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Iran Live: Ex-President Rafsanjani's Camp Makes Its Election Move

Iran Feature: The Week in Review --- Threats and Arrests Before the Presidential Election
Thursday's Iran Live: Ahmadinejad "Presidential Election Will Be Political Epic"

1407 GMT: Ahmadinejad Watch. Mohammad Hassan Asfari of Parliament's National Security Commission has said that a proposed festival in Azadi Stadium in Tehran is a gathering of Ahmadinejad which is an abuse of public funds and is illegal.

1253 GMT: Your Tehran Friday Prayer Update. In today’s sermon, Ayatollah Movahedi Kermani warned Presidential candidates that loyalty to the Supreme Leader is a vital prerequisite for the position, stating that the Presidency is not a position of personal power but a “trusteeship of the divine”.

He also offered his sympathies for those affected by Wednesday’s earthquake in Bushehr Province that killed at least 37 people and injured hundreds more.

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Iran Live: Ahmadinejad "Presidential Election Will Be Political Epic"

1900 GMT: Technology Update. Tabnak, close to presidential candidate Mohsen Rezaei, slammed Western news reports on Ali Razeghi, the Iranian scientist who claims to have invented a 'Time Machine'.

The Western media did not believe in the invention and "in most cases ridiculed it," Tabnak said.

Tabnak -- which publishes daily reviews of the Western press's reporting on Iran -- took particular issue with the UK's Daily Telegraph, criticizing the paper for publishing just selected quotes from an interview with Razeghi.

The UK's Independent also came under fire, with Tabnak accusing it of questioning Iranian technological advances, including its new Ghaher-313 stealth fighter jet and its sending a monkey into space.

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Iran Live: At Least 37 Killed in Earthquake in Bushehr Province

1 GMT: Cyber-Watch. The Guardian has picked up on the story --- reported by EA on Tuesday --- that the Government intends to introduce an Islamic version of Google Earth within four months.

1844 GMT: Culture Watch. Basij official Hossein Qanadian has said that the militia want to launch an Academy of Fine Arts.

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Iran Live: Proper Line on the Election "We Will Foil Enemy Plots"

1555 GMT: Earthquake. A tremor measuring 6.1 on the Richter scale has struck the town of Kaki, 90 kilometres (56 miles) southeast of the southern Iranian city of Bushehr, killing at least 30 people and injuring more than 600.

The quake was followed by at least four aftershocks which jolted Kaki and the nearby city of Khour-Mowj.

The Russian company that has constructed the Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant, 18 kilometres (11 miles) south of Bushehr, said the earthquake has not affected the operations in the facility.

1545 GMT: Cyber-Watch. A claim is circulating that Minister of Information Hassan Nami has announced an Islamic version of Google Earth called "Basir".

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Iran Live: The Regime Responds to the Nuclear Talks

A vision of the nuclear talks, 40 years from now

1745 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Labour activists Khaled Hosseini, Vafa Ghaderi, and Hamed Mahmoudnejad have been released from prison.

1705 GMT: Political Prisoner Watch. Writers Association members and friends of detained blogger and physician Mehdi Khazali have launched a fast, coinciding with the 100th day of Dr. Khazali’s hunger strike.

Khazali, the son of a famous Ayatollah, has been arrested on several occasions, most recently in October 2012.

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