Iran General NewsAhmadinejad lacks legitimacy: opposition leader

Ahmadinejad lacks legitimacy: opposition leader

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AFP: Iranian opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi has reiterated that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad lacks “legitimacy,” months after changing his stance and saying he recognised the hardline president, a reformist website reported on Wednesday.

TEHRAN (AFP) — Iranian opposition leader Mehdi Karroubi has reiterated that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad lacks “legitimacy,” months after changing his stance and saying he recognised the hardline president, a reformist website reported on Wednesday.

Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution was “devouring its young… due to the person at the helm of executive power,” Karroubi said, referring to the post-election crackdown on reformists and opposition figures, the rahesabz.net website reported.

“If this person (Ahmadinejad) had been appointed by the people we would have no sorrow, but this person does not have popular and legal legitimacy,” Karroubi said, speaking in an interview with the website, ahead of the first anniversary of the June 12 polls.

In late January, Karroubi said he recognised Ahmadinejad as president because he had been endorsed by Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader and Ahmadinejad supporter who has the last word on all matters.

Ahmadinejad’s victory in the polls sparked widespread street protests in the worst internal political crisis to hit the Islamic republic since its establishment three decades ago.

Dozens of protesters were killed, hundreds arrested and scores of prominent reformists, journalists and rights campaigners put on trial and jailed.

Karroubi, together with fellow presidential candidate and opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, have alleged that the polls were rigged.

Ahmadinejad’s victory was “not an election but an appointment” Karroubi said. “The number of votes were determined ahead” of the polls, he alleged.

Last month, both opposition leaders called for protests to mark the first anniversary of Ahmadinejad’s return to power.

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