Iran: Former parliament speaker joins presidential race
Iran's former parliament speaker Mehdi Karroubi, a pragmatic reformist, has joined the presidential race, it was reported Tuesday. As the former parliament speaker, Karroubi often tried to stay beyond political partisanship during mostly stormy sessions of the Iranian Majlis, IRNA reported.
Karroubi, who is the secretary of the Association of the Combatant Clerics, launched his presidential bid by recalling President Mohammad Khatami landslide win in 1997. "Those elections helped keep threats against the country at bay since the Americans were blatantly seeking to attack several places, but the problem was evaded with the massive turnout of the people,"
"And now, I believe the situation is sensitive and people's turnout in the presidential election is very decisive," he said, adding "if the elections are held listlessly, the international pressures will double."
Karroubi's move, however, could further split the vote among supporters of reforms, after the former higher education minister Mostafa Moin and incumbent Vice President Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh have already entered the race.