In Iran, 80 candidates for a presidential election decided in advance

With the closing of the submission of candidacies on Monday, June 3, the countdown to the early presidential election in Iran has well and truly begun. A total of 80 people, including four women, stood as candidates in the elections scheduled for June 28, media in Tehran report.

A majority of the candidates are conservative or ultraconservative figures. Only a limited number of reformers submitted their candidacies, in anticipation of their disqualification, as was the case in previous elections. Among them, the best known remains Eshagh Jahanguiri, whose candidacy was disqualified during the 2021 presidential election.

The Council of Guardians of the Constitution, an unelected body dominated by conservatives, has the final say on candidacies. Its twelve members – six clerics appointed by the supreme guide and six jurists – have until June 11 to give the green light and decide who can campaign. In 2021, it had approved only seven candidacies, none of which were from a reform candidate with weight on the political spectrum.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, whose remarks were relayed by Iran Newspaperset the tone this Monday, June 3, by affirming that the regime “needs a president who believes in the values ​​of the Islamic Republic”.

When will there be “free elections”?

Among the moderate candidates, former head of Parliament Ali Larijani, also disqualified by the Guardian Council of the Constitution in 2021, and former central bank president Abdolnaser Hemmati are more likely to be on the final list of candidates. candidates, estimates the local press.

In the ultraconservative camp, the head of Parliament, Bagher Ghalibaf, as well as the former Iranian nuclear negotiator, Saïd Jalili, are favorites.

Reformer Hamideh Zarabadi, one of four women candidates, said she hoped“one day, free elections” will take place in Iran and a woman will arrive at the head of the country, reports the daily Shargh. Since 1979, women’s candidacies have never been approved by the government.

Power divided

This, dominated by the conservatives, did not manage to agree on a single candidate after the interim president, Mohammad Mokhber, finally decided not to run, some media point out. “In disagreement with several ministers”, according to the moderate newspaper EttelaatMokhber decided to support Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf.

The reform newspaper Ham-mihan said he regretted, moreover, the general climate closed to any opening, while the government has already blocked the legislative elections held last March, as well as other elections in recent years.

“The probability that reformist candidates will find themselves in the running is low, and even if a reformer (was selected and) won the presidential election, the hard core of power would do everything to paralyze his action,” explains everyday life.

Voting “remains the playground of conservatives and ultraconservatives”, Who “have entered into conflict with each other since they seized almost all the instances” of the regime, concludes Ham-mihan.

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