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Iran Presidential Election --- Last Day Of Candidate Declarations, Rafsanjani Enters Race

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  • Cort Greene
    Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Last Day Of Candidate
    Message 1 of 1 , May 11, 2013
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      Iran Today: Presidential Election --- Last Day Of Candidate


      Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 6:28 | Joanna
      in EA Iran <http://www.enduringamerica.com/home/category/ea-iran>, EA
      , Middle East and

      *President Ahmadinejad and his right-hand man, Presidential candidate
      Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai, at the election centre today*

      *It is the last day for hopefuls to register as candidates in Iran's
      Presidential election, scheduled for 14 June. Among the big questions:*

      *1. When will President Ahmadinejad's camp put forth its candidate? Will it
      be Ahmadinejad's right-hand man, Esfandiar Rahim-Mashai, or ---
      anticipating the Guardian Council's rejection of Rahim-Mashai --- will the
      President's inner circle unveil an alternative such as former Government
      spokesperson Gholam Hossein Elham or Minister of Transport Ali Nikzad?*

      *2. Will former President Hashemi Rafsanjani enter the contest? His office
      has announced a press conference for 3 p.m. local time (1030 GMT).*

      *3. Will the Supreme Leader's 2+1 Committee make any move for a "unity"
      candidate? Indications are that they will put this off, with all three
      members putting in their names and a final decision later this month after
      the Guardian Council's vetting of the candidates.*

      *Presidential Election Watch: Rafsanjani Enters Race*

      Former President Hashemi Rafsanjani has filed his
      candidacy<http://farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=13920220000302> just
      before the deadline --- "in the 90th minute", as Fars News Agency puts it.

      *Presidential Election Watch: Supreme Leader's Advisor Velayati Declares

      The third member of the Supreme Leader's 2+1 Committee, senior advisor Ali
      Akbar Velayati, has

      Velayati follows the other two members, Tehran Mayor Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf
      and leading Gholam Ali Haddad Adel, in formally declaring. The Committee
      has said that it will not name a single candidate until the Guardian
      Council has vetted the Presidential hopefuls.

      *Presidential Election Watch: Ahmadinejad's Right-Hand Man Is Running*

      President Ahmadinejad's confidante and former Chief of Staff, Esfandiar
      Rahim-Mashai, has registered his

      Ahmadinejad was present at the election
      centre<http://farsnews.com/newstext.php?nn=13920221001151> as
      Rahim-Mashai filed.

      Another Ahmadinejad ally, former media advisor Ali Akbar Javanfekr, has
      also formally declared.

      Last year Javanfekr was imprisoned over a special issue of his Iran
      newspaper. He was granted prison leave to register.

      *Presidential Election Watch: Jalili Running for Supreme Leader's Men?;
      Intimadation of Rafsanjani?*

      Back from a Saturday break to find important news from an EA

      1. The Secretary of the National Security Council and Iran's lead nuclear
      negotiator, Saeed Jalili, has registered as a candidate.

      Last week, we speculated that Jalili might be the eventual choice of the
      Supreme Leader's office, given the apparent failure of any of the three men
      of the "2+1 Committee" to get the endorsement.

      Is this coming to pass?

      2. Among the other declared candidates is Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin
      Mehmanparast and MP Masoud Pezeshkian.

      Former Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki, who in the "Coalition of 5",
      has said that since he does not believe in the coalition's choice of Deputy
      Speaker of Parliament Mohammad Hassan Abutorabi Fard, he will register this

      Davood Ahmadinejad, a vocal critic of his brother's Presidency, registered
      earlier today.

      3. Reports continue that Government supporters have gathered in front of
      the office of former Presidents Hashemi Rafsanjani and Mohammad Khatami,
      shouting slogans against them and preventing any registration of their

      *Claim: Leading Clerics Call on Rafsanjani to Run*

      The opposition site Kalemeh asserts that Grand Ayatollah Sistani, the
      leading Shia cleric in Iraq, and Iran's Grand Ayatollah Vahid Khorasani have
      asked former President Hashemi
      Rafsanjani<http://kaleme.com/1392/02/21/klm-143049/> to
      run in this year's election.

      *Prominent Figures Blocked from Standing in Local Elections*

      Is this a sign of developments to come in the Presidential campaign?

      Officials have begun the
      rejection<http://www.mehrnews.com/detail/News/2051895> of
      hopefuls from local elections, to be held at the same time as the
      Presidential ballot.

      Among those who have been blocked are Mohsen Hashemi, the son of former
      President Hashemi Rafsanjani, former Vice President Massoumeh Ebtekar, and
      former reformist MP Fatehmeh Rakei.

      *Syria Watch: Armed Forces Chief of Staff Praises Hezbollah, Assad*

      Maj. Gen. Seyed Hassan Firouzabadi, the Chief of Staff of Iran's Armed
      Forces, has praised Hezbollah's role in "shaping the resistance" in
      Syria, according
      to Sepah News, <http://sepahnews.com/>the Revolutionary Guards' official
      public relations site.

      Firouzabadi said that Bashar al-Assad's "strong will" coupled with
      Hezbollah's "resistance" was consistent across Syria.

      Syria's victory against "idolatry, arrogance and Wahhabi extremism" was
      centered around Assad and had been achieved because of his "resistance and
      courageous intelligence and support for the Syrian national consciousness",
      Firouzabadi said.

      *Election Watch: Qalibaf and Davood Ahmadinejad Register*


      Tehran mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf and Davood Ahmadinejad --- brother of
      the incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad --- registered their candidacies on
      Saturday morning, the final day for presidential hopefuls to formally
      declare their wish to run.

      Davood Ahmadinejad was the first presidential hopeful to register on
      Saturday, attending the Interior Ministry at 08:30 Tehran time, and told
      reporters he intended to run as an independent candidate, according to the
      Tabnak news website.

      Qalibaf is the second member of the pro-Khamenei 2+1 Committee to register.
      Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel put his name down to run on Friday, leaving only
      Khamenei senior aide Ali Akbar Velayati.

      Javad Etaat, a professor of political science at Shahid Behesti University
      also registered on Saturday morning. Following the disputed 2009
      elections, Etaat
      criticized state media,
      state broadcaster IRIB of being one-sided in its election coverage.


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