May 14, 2021
Fourth Day of Registrations
The fourth day of registrations was among the most controversial so far, with high-profile former political prisoner Mostafa Tajzadeh registering in the morning, a rumour of Mohammad-Javad Azari Jahromi’s plans to register in defiance of the Guardian Council (which never eventuated), and a number of members of the public whose registrations were symbolic, including a 22-year-old female university student and a Kurdish man in traditional costume who told reporters “no one can stop me from running because of my religion”, a clear reference to the exclusion of Sunni Muslims in Iran. Among other high-profile candidates registering today were IRGC officer Ali-Reza Afshar and Fereydoun Abbasi, the former head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation.
May 7, 2021
Kurdish Sunni Leader Criticises Exploitation of Minorities by Candidates
Former Reformist Parliamentarian, academic and Sunni Kurdish activist Jalal Jalalizadeh criticised the use of minorities in endorsing candidates, citing the apparent petition by 500 prominent Sunni Iranians in support of Ebrahim Raisi. Jalalizadeh said that candidates seeking Sunni votes should be genuinely committed to ending discrimination against the minority sect and active in appointing minorities to senior roles. In his ten-point plan, Jalalizadeh said representation of Sunnis in key roles should be proportionate to their population (about 10%) and that Sunni governors should be appointed in Sunni majority provinces, such as Kurdistan and Baluchistan.
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.