Reformist candidate for Iran’s presidency opposes internet censorship and imposition of veil

Madrid, June 30 (Europa Press) –

Iran’s presidential candidate Masoud Pezeshkian has begun campaigning for the second round of the presidential election on July 5 with a message of internet freedom and easing strict measures on women wearing headscarves.

“The government should not interfere in the hijab issue,” the former health minister and reformist candidate said in a message published on his website. “This is a cultural and rational issue and if we ask the police and the judiciary to solve the problem, we will create even more problems,” he added.

Pezeshkian indirectly referred to the recent policies of the late Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, which enabled the so-called moral police to force women to wear the veil, despite the tragic consequences of the 2022 and 2023 protests across the country against the death of young Mahsa Amini, who was detained for allegedly wearing the wrong clothing.

Hundreds of people were killed in police crackdown on the protests, although the Iranian government attributed the demonstrations to the presence of rioters paid by foreign powers.

The brief electoral campaign formally begins tonight and will culminate in two consecutive debates on Monday and Tuesday between Pezeshkian and conservative candidate Saeed Jalili, the country’s former representative in negotiations with the international community over the nuclear programme.

Pezeshkian was the most voted candidate in the first round but fell short of the 50 percent of the vote and one vote short of the one needed to win outright. Jalili now has the support of the entire conservative front ahead of the second round of these elections, following Raisi’s death in a helicopter crash in May.

The first round of the election ended with the worst participation rate in the Islamic Republic’s history, at just around 40 percent. Former political figures such as former Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif have acknowledged that more needs to be done to attract the population to the polls.

“The absence of more than 60 percent of Iranians in the elections is undoubtedly a clear sign of the dissatisfaction and disappointment of our good people with the way the regime is being run. On my part, I apologize to all the people for the failures”, he lamented on his social network account X.

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button