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Iranians Vote in Snap Election to Replace the late President; Reformist Candidate Pledges ‘Friendly Relations’ with West

Iranians participated in a snap election on Friday to replace the late President Ebrahim Raisi. The race featured Masoud Pezeshkian as the sole reformist candidate, advocating for improved relations with the West amidst widespread voter apathy. Since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, women and advocates of radical change have been barred from running, and the election lacked oversight from international monitors.

Against the backdrop of heightened Middle Eastern tensions, including the Israel-Hamas conflict in Gaza, Iran’s uranium enrichment activities, and regional militia engagements, Pezeshkian’s campaign aimed to galvanise support. His promises included seeking friendlier relations with all nations except Israel. Despite calls for boycotts and criticism of the limited candidate choices, voter turnout was a pivotal factor, potentially favouring candidates aligned with former President Hassan Rouhani’s policies.

The election coincided with the U.S. presidential debate, where Iran was discussed, with contrasting views from former Presidents Donald Trump and Joe Biden on their handling of Iran-related issues. Despite some voter turnout in regions like Kerman, overall participation levels, reminiscent of recent low-turnout elections, raised questions about public engagement in Iranian politics.

Irish Samachar English News

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