Iranian election roundup, 1 June 2009

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Eleven days left.

The candidates:

Ahmadinejad (محمود احمدی نژاد, top left) - you all know him, he wants a second term
Rezaei (محسن رضایی, bottom left) - he's a former commander of the Revolutionary Guard, and even more of a hardliner than Ahmadinejad. His role will be to take hardliner votes away from those disappointed in Ahmadinejad.
Mousavi (میر حسین موسوی, top right) - the other main contender, he was endorsed by former president Khatami and has reformist tendencies. He was prime minister in the 1980s.
Karroubi (محدی کروبی, bottom right) - reformist, and also the only cleric running for office. Says he'll support Mousavi in the second ballot if there is a runoff. It's also possible that he might drop out earlier to support Mousavi.

There's been an interesting spat going on between Ahmadinejad and former president Khatami over the past few days; Ahmadinejad said in a recent interview that the saddest day of his life was when Khatami met Chirac in France in 2005 and Khatami "had to walk up a flight of stairs" to meet the president of France, but photographs show this to not be the case (see here and here), as Chirac also walked down a flight of stairs to meet him. Yes, it's a silly spat. Here's the latest article on that.
  • Election debates to start tonight - these are all one-one-one debates between each contender, instead of all four together. The schedule goes as follows: 2 June: Karroubi and Rezaei, 3 June: Ahmadinejad and Mousavi (so 3 June will be the one to look forward to), 4 June: Mousavi and Rezaei, 6 June: Ahmadinejad and Karroubi, 7 June: Karroubi and Mousavi (that'll probably be like the Clinton-Obama debates with 95% agreement), and 8 June: Ahmadinejad and Rezaei (that'll be a big chance for Rezaei to get a chunk of Ahmadinejad's vote so he'll probably be all guns blazing for that one).
  • Huffington Post - what is at stake with this election
  • Another small news roundup here.
  • The plane with the bomb in it was to be taken by former president Khatami (he changed to another plane so wouldn't have been hurt even if the bomb had gone off)

The area around the city of Hamadan (photo by Amir Jafary).




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