Iran Election Guide

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Entries in Society of Combatant Clergy (2)


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 Coverage: How to "Engineer" an Election

"My husband is an engineer. He engineers elections." (Cartoon: Maya Neyestani)

See also Thursday's Iran Live Coverage: Ahmadinejad v. Parliament...and the Revolutionary Guards

1605 GMT: Your Tehran Friday Prayer Update (Election Edition). More about the distinctive theme in today's Prayer sermon, delivered by the Guardian Council's Ayatollah Jannati, that while Iran has free elections, it is co-operation with the enemy to talk about free elections (see 1155 GMT)....

Jannati's threat to detained opposition leaders Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, both of whom ran in the June 2009 Presidential election, was straightforward: “The public has identified your movement and knows your leaders and the leaders of sedition, and they know what your aim is; you should be ashamed of yourselves.”

And Jannati made clear that, while "those who meet the necessary criteria will never be refused a chance to run in the elections", those who "they lack them...clearly will not be allowed to run".

But here is where it gets really interesting:

Those who consider themselves men of politics and have had important roles in the Revolution should be ashamed of themselves for repeating the statement of the foreign enemies of the regime....

The political losers are now talking about free elections and one of them is quite powerful and since a while ago he has begun talking about this issue and the rest have followed his line.

Who is this "quite powerful...political loser"? Surely not President Ahmadinejad, given that the Supreme Leader handed him the 2009 victory? Former President Mohammad Khatami does not seem to qualify as "quite powerful"?

How about former President Hashemi Rafsanjani?

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