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May 30, 2021

Jalili: The Filtering of Twitter is not Justified

In a move archetypal of the irony of Iranian elections, Saeed Jalili took to Twitter to complain about its filtering by the Iranian firewall. Describing cyberspace as an opportunity, Jalili argued that it should be utilised by the government, not avoided. Twitter users were quick to pick up tweets Jalili made in 2016, which seemed to contradict his stated opinion today.

Read more at Tabnak

May 25, 2021

The Interior Ministry Announces Candidates

The official list of candidates approved by the Guardian Council was announced this afternoon at the Election Headquarters by the Ministry of Interior. The list, which was one of Iran’s worst kept secrets, includes seven names: Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh Hashemi, Abdol-Naser Hemmati, Saeed Jalili, Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh, Ebrahim Raisi, Mohsen Rezaei and Ali-Reza Zakani. Notable disqualifications include Ali Larijani and Eshaq Jahangiri, most of whom accepted disqualification, with the expected exception of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The only Reformist among their number is Mehr-Alizadeh.

Read the announcement at IRNA

May 24, 2021

Final Candidates Sent to Ministry of Interior, Fars Leaks Candidates

The final list of vetted candidates has been sent by the Guardian Council to the Ministry of Interior, who will announce the list on the afternoon of Tuesday May 25. FarsNews published a list of seven candidates, supposedly leaked by a journalist who was shown the list: Ebrahim Raisi, Mohsen Rezaei, Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh, Saeed Jalili, Ali-Reza Zakani, Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh Hashemi, Abdul-Naser Hemmati.

Read more at FarsNews

May 22, 2021

Larijani Engages in Media Blitz

As part of a strategy to grab and hold newspaper headlines, Ali Larijani had another day of blitzing the media and social media. Larijani gave an interview with Lebanese news channel Al-Mayadeen in which he stated that he decided to run in the elections because the candidates were all the same and Iranian voters deserved an actual choice. Larijani also spoke positively of Iran’s foreign policy engagement, particularly the new deal with China, and making progress in negotiations with Saudi Arabia and the United States. Later in the day, Larijani engaged Saeed Jalili in a Twitter argument in which Jalili accused Larijani of wanting drama and not to solve problems, while Larijani labelled Jalili an “aide to the election”, referring to rumours that he will stand aside for Ebrahim Raisi.

Read a summary of Larijani’s interview with Al-Madayeen at Eghtesad News
Read about Larijani and Jalili’s Twitter argument at Donya-e-Eqtesad

May 15, 2021

Saeed Jalili Registers

Former nuclear negotiator, war veteran, diplomat and current member of the Expediency Council, Saeed Jalili, registered this afternoon. In his speech, he said “This election should be such that weak and invalid rhetoric is overcome by real plans for the issues of the people. The country cannot be ruled by drama as it has in the last eight years. Performance cannot replace real work and if we do not say what we want to achieve, it is just a show”. Jalili is expected to stand aside for Raisi when the time comes.

Read about and see the footage of Jalili’s registration at Tasnim

April 27, 2021

Jalili: Burden of Sanctions must be on Authorities, not the People

Conservative candidate Saeed Jalili, in reflecting on the Rouhani administration, said that its shortcoming was its focus on one issue, the JCPOA, in which it did not succeed. Jalili added that if the officials are unable to counter the sanctions against Iran, then it is inevitable that the burden will be on the people, which Jalili said is unacceptable. 

Read speech on FarsNews

April 14, 2021

Zibakalam: Who will Ultimately be the Principalist Candidate

Esteemed political scientist, Prof Sadegh Zibakalam of the University of Tehran, outlined his analysis on the four main Principalist candidates: Ebrahim Raisi, Mohsen Rezaei, Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf and Saeed Jalili. Zibakalam argued that Raisi would be a clear favourite as he is the candidate most likely to win at this stage, however it is not clear if he will accept an invitation from the two prominent Princpalist organisations, the Coalition Council and the Unity Council, to run. In Zibakalam’s view, the Principalist choice is between Raisi and Qalibaf at the moment, and other candidates like Saeed Mohammad, Ali Nikzad, Ezzatollah Zarghami and Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh, stand no chance of being supported by the Principalist bloc. For Saeed Mohammad, the problem is that he is too much like a young Ahmadinejad, and the Principalist camp of 2021 is not going to make the same choice as the did in 2005. However, Zibakalam added that if Raisi does not run, Saeed Mohammad would still pose a threat to whomever the Princpalists chose, effectively splitting the conservative vote.

Read more on Fararu

March 30, 2021

Kurdish Cultural and Sunni Leaders Endorse Jalili

A number of Kurdish academics, cultural, religious and economic leaders published an open letter calling on Saeed Jalili to run for President. Citing his war record in Iranian Kurdistan, and the need for a competent leader to face the country’s problems, the leaders from a number of Kurdish cities stated that Jalili was the best candidate.

Read more on FARS News

March 27, 2021

Hardline Movement Calls on Jalili to Announce Candidacy

The hardline Front for Islamic Stability, linked to Ayatollah Mesbah-Yazdi, called up Saeed Jalili to announce his intention to run for president. Through their mouthpiece, RajaNews, they endorsed Jalili as capable of “reviving the Iranian dream” created by the Islamic Revolution.

Read more on Rajan News