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Iran’s hardliner Ebrahim Raisi defeats president in nuclear negotiations

Tehran — A tough Iranian judge who opposes Iran’s western efforts wins Iran presidential electionTehran is trying to revive an international nuclear deal that frees the country from US sanctions, strengthening conservative control over the country’s politics.

According to Iran’s Interior Ministry, Ebrahim Raisi received 17.9 million votes, or about 62% of the ballots.

Raishi’s main challenger, Abdel Nasser Hematy, the only one Moderate candidates remained in the race, Received about 8.5% of the votes.

Iran’s current president Hassan Rouhani visited Mr. Raisi on Saturday to celebrate his victory.

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani spoke to the media on the podium, and President-elect Ebrahim Raisi spoke to the media on Saturday.


Photo:

Presidential Official Website / Reuters

Raisi criticized his predecessor’s approach to the West. The United States sanctioned the new president of Iran in 2019 because of its close relationship with the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic, Ali Khamenei.

But in the coming months, Mr. Raisi is expected to pave the way for the international nuclear deal he supports and says that Iranian and American diplomats are about to revive. The new nuclear deal with the United States is the key to relief from crushing US sanctions and a potential path to Iran’s prosperity under his administration.

Raisi’s victory was largely the result of a historically low turnout of 48.8%. This is a sign of division within Iranian society and a reflection of widespread dissatisfaction with the lack of true choice in voting.

Millions of Iranians stayed home, partly because they protested the Secretariat’s move to hold elections in favor of Mr. Raishi before the ballots were thrown.A few weeks before the vote, the national election regulator Disqualify almost all non-conservative candidates..

Invalid ballots make up about 14% of total votes and the second largest percentage of votes cast.

The results also reflect the indifference between Iranian voters to reformers and moderate candidates. About 2.4 million Iranians, or about 4% of voters, voted for Mr. Hematy.

By comparison, politically moderate Rouhani received 18 million votes in 2013 and 23.5 million in 2017. In the 2009 election, more liberal reformist candidates received 13.5 million votes.

Roham Alvandi, associate professor of international history at the London School of Economics, said: “The reformers who called on people to vote were mostly ignored.”

With Mr. Raisi’s victory, Iran’s major institutions are now dominated by national conservatives, from the president and army to parliament and the judiciary. Such results indicate that Iran is moving to a one-party system, analysts said.

“This election makes it clear that most Iranians already know implicitly. Islamic republic will not support any peaceful reforms,” ​​said Albandi. “It erodes the little-popular legitimacy left by the current political system.”

Mr. Raishi is scheduled to become president in early August.

A difficult challenge awaits. Iran faces increasing threats and frequent conflicts with its Middle Eastern rivals.

People were lined up to vote in Tehran on Friday.

Iran’s economic problems have also caused frequent bouts of anxiety. As head of the country’s judiciary, Mr. Raisi presided over the mass arrests of journalists, lawyers and American citizens and the death sentence for several minors, with little objection.

A 60-year-old priest, Raisi has been part of Iran’s judicial system since the inauguration of the Islamic republic. He is known abroad for serving on a committee that sentenced thousands of political prisoners to death in 1988.

Raishi studied under Khamenei in the early 1990s and did not appear to be far from his position. In return, Khamenei rewarded his disciples with a series of promotions.

After leading the Iranian Comprehensive Inspection Office, an anti-corruption agency, for 10 years, in 2004 Raishi represented the state’s judiciary. Khamenei appointed him President of the Prosecutor’s Office in 2014 and chose him to head the billion-dollar charity, Astan Quds Razavi, which is central to the business interests of the Supreme Leader.

Supreme leader Hassan Rouhani appointed him as Judiciary Chief in 2019 after Raisi lost to the incumbent president in the 2017 presidential election.

Recent advances in President Raishi have led analysts to believe that Khamenei is caring for him as his possible successor as Supreme Leader. “He is by no means heavyweight,” said Mehrzad Boroujerdi, Dean of the Department of Public International Affairs at Virginia Tech. “Khamenei had no good reason to give him all these positions without grooming him for the higher positions I think could be his successor.”

Khamenei, 82, was also president before being elected Supreme Leader in 1989. His appointment was after the death of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

As a priest in charge of the judiciary of Iran, Mr. Raishi has sought to establish the human status of the people. When he ran for president in 2017, he took a photo with popular, tattooed rapper Amir Tataloo to appeal to young voters.

On the final day of this year’s campaign, Raisi attended an athletes’ meeting in Tehran, sat in the crowd and watched part of the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers between Iran and Iraq. He took notes when the athlete complained to him about financial issues such as lack of salary and allowances.

Earlier in the week, people flocked to his campaign office with letters asking for help with their economic problems, as did supporters of former populist President Mahmood Ahmadinejad.

How Mr. Raishi approaches Western countries, especially the United States, depends largely on who he appoints to the cabinet. He has criticized in the past for resigning President Hassan Rouhani for his pursuit of diplomacy, which led to the 2015 international nuclear deal. Mr Raishi said he supported the nuclear deal, but Khamenei also said he did not trust the United States because he approved it.

Soon, Raishi will have to deal with the slumping economy while checking out the Covid-19 pandemic.

Iran’s growth has stagnated in recent years, constrained by US sanctions, while unemployment is high and the value of local currencies is plummeting. The economic crisis is driving more families into poverty.It urged the Iranians to protest as they were I met a brutal power By security forces.

Supporters of Ebrahim Raisi gathered in Tehran on Wednesday.

Write to Sune Engel Rasmussen at sune.rasmussen@wsj.com

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Iran’s hardliner Ebrahim Raisi defeats president in nuclear negotiations

Source link Iran’s hardliner Ebrahim Raisi defeats president in nuclear negotiations

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