Sunday, June 19, 2005

Fraudulent Election Results Claimed

Potkin Azarmehr, Iran va Jahan:
Widespread election fraud and interference in the election results has been claimed by candidates who did not make the second round of the Islamic elections on Friday. READ MORE

Dr. Mostafa Mo’in, one of the presidential candidates in a statement to the Iranian people reported by ILNA said,
We must take seriously the danger of fascism and the disappearance of the role of the people and the danger of the elimination of republicanism under any name or organization. I warn that moves of this kind have henceforth brought into question not just the structure of free and fair elections but also their soundness. We must believe that this structural deviation is far more harmful than the danger of offences, cheating and problems in elections.

I warn that this organized military and supervisory interference in the elections has consequences beyond the violation of the rights of people who voted for me and the likes of me. I declare that this is a threat to the people's choice and free elections, and, even more, a threat to Iran's national interests and to the elevation of the system of the Islamic Republic. “
Mehdi Karrubi, another presidential candidate in a press conference with ISNA said,
If the Guardian Council was able, it would even appoint Ahmadi-Nejad without even holding an election. I object to the way the Guardian Council and the revolutionary Guards behaved in this election.”

On the eve of the election I was told that I was ahead of other candidates but suddenly another candidate obtained an extra million votes in the closing hours. How is this possible?

One of the newspapers wrote that Hashemi and another candidate went to the second round, before the results were even announced. I firmly believe that a lot of bribe has taken place and in a number of cities very strange things have occured. My own vote is not important, I want to defend the people’s right to a fair election.”

“I said nothing when some candidates were vetoed because I thought it was not expedient to do so, but now I see that people have been wronged and I am prepared to publicly debate this and produce documents.”

It is impossible for an unknown candidate with such a low election profile to have received so many votes.”
Ibrahim Yazdi, whose Freedom Movement supported the reformist candidate, Dr. Mostafa Moin, and always refrains from radical moves against the Islamic establishment, also protested in Mizan News saying
The Guardian Council in an unexpected move expropriated the people’s votes and this was expected.”
In an uncharacteristic statement, Yazdi continued
The only way to deal with this fraud by the Guardian Council, the Law Enforcement Forces and the state TV is to get the people to protest. It makes one wonder how an unknown candidate with hardly any campaigning in the elections suddenly receives so many votes.”
Many other public blatant blunders suggesting fraud and manipulations have taken place since yesterday. For example the military governor for Tabriz, suddenly reduced the figure for those eligible to vote despite the previous published figures by Tabriz election authorities just to get the participation level over the 50% mark.

Mehr News Agency quoted a high ranking security official’s warning that Any more reporting of the fraud in the elections may turn the joys of the peacefully held elections into a bitter experience. The provocations by any of the candidates in raising doubts about the declaration of the election results can have severe security consequences and will even enable suspect exploits for anarchic elements”

Meanwhile the main foreign news agencies in Iran have reported the figures as declared by the Islamic Republic without any reference to the reports of widespread fraud; the most blatant ever in the last 25 years.

The general reaction from some Iranians who have conspiracy theory tendencies is that the reason foreign correspondents are not reporting the extensive fraud claims by other candidates and the suspicious result for Ahmadi-Nejad, is part of the general conspiracy to elect the West’s favourite wheeler dealer candidate, Hashemi as the next president. Since Ahmadi-Nejad is known to have an extremely backward and reactionary mentality, even with Islamic Republic standards, it may compel the Iranians once again to choose the lesser of the two evils in the second round.