Losing Iranian presidential candidate condemns "illegal" efforts to defeat him

[JURIST] Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani [Wikipedia profile; campaign website in Farsi], the relatively-moderate cleric and former president of Iran who lost Friday's run-off election to hardline conservative Mahmoud Ahmadinejad [Wikipedia profile, campaign website in Farsi], contended Saturday that there had been what he called "organized and illegal" efforts to ensure his defeat. Rafsanjani, president from 1989 to 1997, ran on a platform calling for better relations with the West. Despite his misgivings, however, he said he he will not dispute the result, favoring Ahmadinejad won with 62% of votes cast amid high turnout [Wikipedia report]. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei [official website in English] called the result a "profound humiliation" for the United States, which has expressed concern about the lack of democratic safeguards in the Iranian electoral process [JURIST report]. BBC News has more.

 

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