Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Mohsen Rezaei (83)


Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Is Ali Larijani The Real Winner?

Ali Larijani & The Supreme Leader --- Credit: Mehr News Fars: Guardian Council May Disqualify Moderate Rouhani

In an indication of growing concern over the campaign of moderate Hassan Rouhani, Fars News --- close to the Revolutionary Guards --- has declared, from an "informed source", that the Guardian Council will discuss the candidacy tomorrow.

The source said the Council will re-examine Rouhani's qualifications, considering charges that he is being supported by leaders of "sedition" and lawlessness.

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Iran Special: Highlights From The Third Presidential Debate

Iran's Presidential race has, in many ways, turned into a contest not only between the eight individual candidates but perhaps even more so between the Principlist/ Conservative and the Reformist/Moderate camps.

Although Friday's Third Presidential debate was an opportunity for the candidates to set out their views and policies on foreign policy and politics, it also provided a space to explore this factional divide.

Principlist and conservative candidates --- Ali Akbar Velayati, Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf, Gholam-Ali Haddad- Adel -- used the debate to criticize the Reformists and past Reformist governments, while Reformist candidate Mohammad-Reza Aref and his moderate counterpart Hassan Rouhani slammed the Principlist movement and the current Ahmadinejad administration. Independent candidates Mohsen Rezaei and Mohammad Gharazi hit out at both factions and called for an end to factionalism.

Some of the main highlights of the debate (thanks to Al Jazeera English and Hassan Rouhani's campaign team, who live-tweeted the debate).

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Iran Special: The 2nd Presidential Debate

Photo: Mehdi Dehghan/AP

1250 GMT: Qalibaf makes a general call for "generation of wealth" through culture, while maintaining "dignity": "We are not a capitalist society....We believe under Divine guidance we protect human freedom and dignity."

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Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Censoring An Iranian Campaign Story

Rouhani On Iran- Qatar Relations

Moderate Presidential candidate Hassan Rouhani congratulated Iran on Tuesday evening on an important victory over its rival Qatar --- dashing the Gulf state's hopes after dominating it.

Iran beat Qatar 1-0 on the football field.

Meanwhile, Iran summoned Qatar's charge d'affaires on Tuesday over what it said was an "Arab-linked terrorist plot".

Ahmadinejad Camp to Maintain Influence in Tehran?

President Ahmadinejad's camp has been blocked at national level from continuing influence, with the disqualification of Ahmadinejad's right-hand man Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai as a candidate, but this may not be the end of the story....

The Ahmadinejad faction has put forth Minister of Transportation and Housing Ali Nikzad as candidat for Tehran mayor, and has named other hopefuls for city council seats, including Ahmadinejad’s sister Parvin and Presidential advisor Ali Zabihi.

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Iran Today: Is The Quest For A Unity Candidate Over?

Jalili Swears On Quran To Sacrifice Life For Supreme Leader

Presidential candidate Saeed Jalili swears on a Quran that he will sacrifice his life for the Supreme Leader at the request of a student during a rally at Tehran University.

The student asks Jalili if he is ready to swear on the Quran, and he replies: "Enshallah, I am".

After Jalili takes the Quran, the crowd chants his name.

Rouhani Gives Live Speech On State TV: We're Not After A Bomb

In his speech on State TV on Monday, moderate Presidential candidate Hassan Rohani said that he planned to use experts in his "government of hope and prudence" if elected --- a promise made by other candidates as well, notably Saeed Jalili and Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf/

Rouhani's comments indicate that he is attempting to pitch himself as a centrist candidate with a broad appeal. Perhaps with a nod at earlier comments on Monday by political commentator Sadeq Zibakalam, who said that reformist voters must back Rouhani or face a Jalili presidency, Rouhani said that he is able to work with all parties, and that he only opposed extremism.

With regard to Iran's nuclear program, Rouhani said Iran needed to clarify its position but stressed that Tehran was not seeking a nuclear weapon, and rather was developing nuclear technology for national development.

Referring to the ongoing battle between himself and his rival Saeed Jalili, Rouhani defended his term as nuclear negotiator:

Rouhani also discussed regional cooperation and national security, noting that he planned to examine specific foreign policy issues to "identify the countries with whom Iran could work".

Rouhani said that public diplomacy --- even with the United States --- was important for Iran, across issues like culture, sports and religion.

The moderate candidate mentioned the Syria question:

Rouhani Slams Bagheri, Jalili

Moderate Presidential candidate Hassan Rouhani sharply criticized his rival Saeed Jalili's campaign manager, nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri on Monday, over the ongoing row over claims by the Jalili camp that Rouhani made concessions during his tenure as nuclear negotiator.

Conservative news outlet Asr Iran published Rouhani's response to Bagheri's claims, and Rouhani's campaign team also noted them on his Twitter account.

Rouhani slammed Bagheri for using the "unfounded allegations" against him for capital in Jalili's election campaign, but suggested that Bagheri read his book, "National Security And Nuclear Diplomacy".

The moderate candidate also accused Bagheri of making Iran an international laughing stock when he submitted a two-page document to theP5+1 in 2008 that was "full of errors".

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Iran Analysis: Presidential Election --- A 4-Point Guide to the State of the Race

Ssturday's campaign speech by Hassan Rouhani, with the crowd chanting the name of detained opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi

With 11 days to go before the first-round vote in the Presidential election, three points on the main contenders and a look at the possibilities....


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Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Reactions To The Televised Debate

Behind The Scenes At The Televised Debate

Presidential Election Watch: Rouhani Edition

Rouhani Slams State TV

Rouhani has criticized IRIB, saying that State TV had failed to create a healthy competition in Friday's televised debates.

Rafsanjani "Told Rouhani To Stay In Race"

Rouhani says he consulted with former President Hashemi Rafsanjani, and others, who encouraged and advised him to remain in the Presidential race.

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Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Aref and Rezaei Go To The People

Presidential Election Watch: Rouhani Criticizes Ahmadinejad's Holocaust Denial & Calls To Annihilate Israel

The IRDiplomacy website, close to former Iranian diplomat and adviser to former President Khatami Seyed Mohammad Sadegh Kharazi, has published excerpts of an interview with Presidential candidate Hassan Rouhani, which is highly critical of incumbent President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's foreign policy.

Rouhani argues that though the events of the Arab Spring --- which Iran refers to as the Islamic Awakening --- could have changed the strategic balance in the Middle East to Iran's advantage, "some unwise and radical behaviors deprived the Islamic Republic of Iran of using the situation to its benefit."

Ahmadinejad's policies --- including his Holocaust denial and calls to eliminate Israel --- merely led to "increased unity among Iran's enemies", Rouhani argued.

Regarding whether Iran should open bilateral talks with the US, Rouhani said:

The present conditions must be carefully analyzed and, if necessary, negotiation and bilateral dialogue with the US must not be avoided. The first steps should be aimed at preventing the increase of pressures and stopping the trend of the present sanctions. During the next stages, the atmosphere must be balanced until the complete elimination of sanctions.

I don’t believe in negotiation just for the sake of negotiation and without achieving any results. We must have a clear agenda and objective in negotiating with the US.

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Iran Today: Guardian Council Approves Eight Candidates --- What Next?

"Western Sources" and Media Put Out Scary Stories About Leaked Nuclear Report

As customary, extracts from the latest report from the International Atomic Energy Agency are being fed by Western officials to the media with the scariest-possible interpretation.

The report says that Iran's stock of 20% uranium is still below the level of 250 kilogrammes needed for a single atomic bomb, with Tehran holding 182 kilogrammes and another 140.8 kilos in a state for civilian-only use.

Three diplomats, however, made sure that George Jahn of the Associated Press has the dramatic lede that Tehran "has installed close to 700 high-tech centrifuges in an upgrade of its uranium enrichment program since the start of the year". (Jahn apparently has forgotten that in January the diplomats were talking of 3000 centrifuges.)

Reuters recycles the line that "Iran is pressing ahead with the construction of a research reactor" using plutonium from the Arak heavy-water reactor.

As EA noted earlier this year, dissecting a scare story in The Daily Telegraph, plutonium is a natural by-product of heavy-water reactors, and other countries use it in their civilian programmes.

The unintentional humour, howver, comes from the Institute for Science and International Security, which has previously seen pink tarpaulins and doom-laden magnets as harbingers of Iran's sinister atomic plans. This time, the Institute warns, "Iran Laying Asphalt at the Suspect Parchin Site".

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Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Still No "Unity" Candidate

Election Watch: Rezaei Edition

Mohsen Rezaei --- former head of the Revolutionary Guards, Secretary of the Expediency Council, and Presidential candidate in 2009 --- has registered for this year's contest.

Rezaei's outlet Tabnak said he was accommpanied by more than 2000 people who chanted that he would bring the recovery of Iran's faltering economy.

Rezaei used a similar message in the 2009 election and has been highly critical of the Ahmadinejad Government's handling of economic matters.

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