Ahmadinejad re-elected Iran’s president, Moussavi cries foul (Roundup)

June 13th, 2009 - 9:35 pm ICT by IANS  

Tehran, June 13 (IANS) Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was Saturday re-elected by a decisive margin but his main rival Mir-Hossein Moussavi accused him of electoral fraud as his supporters clashed with police and Ahmadinejad’s supporters.
Interior Minister Sadeq Mahsoul announced that the president received 24.5 million or 62 percent of the total votes cast in Friday’s elections, while former prime minister Moussavi received 33.7 percent - 13.2 million - of the votes.

The two other candidates - former IRGC commander Mohsen Rezaei and former parliament speaker Mehdi Karroubi - gained less than two and one percent of the votes respectively, Press TV quoted Mahsoul as saying in a press conference in Tehran.

Howerver, Mousavi, who waged a heated campaign against Ahmadinejad’s bid for reelection, urged his supporters to reject the outcome and attributed the results to widespread fraud and pledged to resist the manipulaiton of the the entire election process by the interior ministry.

“The Iranians know very well for whom they have voted and will neither accept the vote counting charade on (state) television nor follow those who have come to power with cheating and deception,” Moussavi said in a statement on his website.

“I’m warning that I won’t surrender to this manipulation,” he said, adding that the announced results were “shaking the pillars of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s sacred system” and represented “treason to the votes of the people.”

Meanwhile, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei confirmed the result, express his pleasure over the unprecedented high turnout and also congratulated Ahmadinejad, calling him “president of all Iranians”.

“The participation of over 80 percent of Iranians at the polls and the 24-million votes cast is a cause for true celebration and god willing this will ensure the continuation of the country’s progress and the maintenance of national security,” Khamenei said in statement.

“The spirit of calm presented by the nation, in the face of enemy propaganda and the nation’s mass participation was such that makes it indescribable in words,” he said.

“The elected president is the president of all Iranians and also his opponents should now support and help him,” Khamenei said in a message carried by state television.

Soon after the elections were announced, clashes broke out between the supporters of Moussavi and Ahmadinejad, forcing the police to impose a ban on public gatherings.

According to reports, about 2,000 Moussavi supporters sat down at Tehran’s Vanak Square, protesting the alleged fraud in the balloting and chanting anti-Ahmadinejad slogans.

Interior Minister Mahsouli, however, dismissed the fraud claims, and said that his ministry would be ready to receive any legal complaints and reply to them accordingly.

“No violations that may have influenced the vote have been reported, and we have received no written complaint,” the minister said at the press conference.

He explained that there may have been some tensions between the representatives of the presidential hopefuls but added that there is no evidence to suggest that the issues of contention have led to violations, Press TV reported.

– Indo-Asian News Service


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