Iran elections: Judiciary warns presidential candidates against crossing 'red lines'

WION Web Team
New Delhi Published: May 30, 2021, 10:44 PM(IST)

Iran flag (file photo) Photograph:( Reuters )

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Several issues are considered "red lines" in Iran, including questioning the doctrine of Velayat-e faqih (the guardianship of the jurist) which establishes religious authority over politics

A senior official of Iran's judiciary on Sunday warned candidates running in the presidential election against crossing "red lines" of the Islamic republic. Iranians will select a successor to current President Hassan Rouhani on June 18.

"Candidates should not cross the system's red lines in their campaigns and speeches," said Tehran Attorney General Ali Alqassi-Mehr, quoted by Mizan Online, the judiciary's official news agency.

Wrongdoers will be "confronted firmly", he said, and warned in particular against any attacks on the "reputation" of the judiciary.

Several issues are considered "red lines" in Iran, including questioning the doctrine of Velayat-e faqih (the guardianship of the jurist) which establishes religious authority over politics.

The head of the judiciary, ultraconservative Ebrahim Raisi, is widely considered the favourite candidate in the race to the presidency.

Raisi won 38 percent of the vote in the 2017 presidential election but was defeated by Rouhani.

Guardian Council, the body which vets the candidates has approved seven mainly ultraconservative candidates from 600 hopefuls.

Some disqualifications carried out by the Guardian Council appeared to have cleared the way for Raisi. He faces four lesser known candidates from own camp and two reformistst who don't have a strong base.

The Islamic republic's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Thursday said candidates should focus on "youth unemployment" and economic woes of "the disadvantaged class," two themes prominently highlighted in Raisi's campaign in 2017 and again this year.

Iranian authorities, including the supreme leader, have in recent months called for high turnout, while the limited polls available have pointed to a potential record abstention.

Meanwhile, Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has dismissed central bank governor Abdolnaser Hemmati, who is running in the presidential election in June, the Tasnim news agency reported on Sunday.

Hemmati in a Saturday night meeting on the Clubhouse social media app said Rouhani "Told me that if you stand in the election, you cannot remain the central bank chief because it affects monetary and exchange rate policies".

(With inputs from agencies)

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