Iran General NewsIran's Rafsanjani ignores hardliners' call on vote

Iran’s Rafsanjani ignores hardliners’ call on vote


ImageReuters: Iran's influential former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani on Sunday defied a call by a group of hardline clerics to back the country's disputed presidential election result, a news agency reported.

By Parisa Hafezi

ImageTEHRAN, July 26 (Reuters) – Iran's influential former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani on Sunday defied a call by a group of hardline clerics to back the country's disputed presidential election result, a news agency reported.

On Friday, 50 members of the 86-seat Assembly of Experts, called on Rafsanjani in a statement to show more support for Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who endorsed the re-election of the hardline president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, soon after the June 12 vote, which moderates say was rigged.

Challenging the authority of Iran's most powerful figure, Rafsanjani declared the Islamic republic in crisis in during his sermon on July 17 and demanded an end to arrests of moderates.

"My standpoint (about the election) is the same as I mentioned in the Friday prayer sermon," Rafsanjani was quoted as saying by the semi-official ILNA news agency.

The remarks of the cleric, who is head of the Assembly of Experts, which in theory can dismiss the supreme leader, indicated the reformist camp was unwilling to give in quietly despite the pressure.

The election has plunged the Islamic state into its biggest internal crisis since the 1979 Islamic revolution and has exposed deepening divisions in its ruling elite.

Rights groups say hundreds of people, including senior pro-reform politicians, journalists, activists and lawyers, have been detained by the authorities since the election.

Rafsanjani confirmed there were divisions inside the clerical establishment over the election.

"The existing dispute is related to the election … If differences (over the election) were resolved, then the dispute would come to an end as well," Rafsanjani said.


Rafsanjani, an architect of the Islamic revolution, warned the post-election power struggle would harm the establishment.

"The leader and I have been friends for over 50 years. We have been through various stages of the revolution together," Rafsanjani said, in a clear answer to the members of the assembly who called on him to show his loyalty to Khamenei by supporting the result.

"The leader is my hope to resolve the dispute based on his experiences."

Reformist former president Mohammad Khatami, defeated candidates Mehdi Karoubi and Mirhossein Mousavi have denounced Ahmadinejad's new government as "illegitimate".

Khatami has called for a referendum on the legitimacy of the government. Leading reformists have demanded the release of detained reformists in widespread street protests against the election result.

Iranian official media have said at least 20 people died in violence after the poll.

Mousavi and Karoubi have called on the Interior Ministry to allow a gathering on Thursday to commemorate pro-reformers killed since the vote. (Editing by Alison Williams)

Latest news

Iran’s Regime’s New Hijab Bill Seeks to Silence Women

On May 21, Ebrahim Raisi’s government approved and sent a bill on "Chastity and Hijab" to Iran’s Parliament (Majlis)....

Iranian Opposition Condemns Release of Tehran’s Convicted Diplomat-Terrorist Assadollah Assadi

The recent prisoner exchange between Belgium and Iran, announced by the government of Oman, has sparked strong condemnation from...

World leaders call on Biden to adopt new Iran policy

In a joint letter, 109 former world leaders signed a letter calling for accountability in Iran and urging U.S....

The Unsettling Child Marriage Epidemic Sweeping Iran

The horrific scene of a man holding the severed head of his 17-year-old wife, Mona Heydari, in southwest Iran,...

How Iran’s Housing Crisis Can Trigger More Protests

Renting a home in Iran has become nearly impossible for tenants who not only have buried their dream of...

Iran’s Budget Deficit Has Doubled

In the absence of statistics from Iran’s Central Bank and despite the government's false claims that the budget for...

Must read

Iran’s liquidation sale?

Washington Times: The answer to a question put to...

Over 1,000 arrested on drug charges in northern Iran province

Iran Focus: Tehran, Jan. 21 – At least 1,000...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you