Iranian President Mohammad Khatami could run for a second term in presidential polls scheduled for next year, his brother, deputy parliamentary speaker Mohammad-Reza Khatami, said Tuesday.
"We think that the president will stand because until now he has not announced his intention not to," his brother told the official IRNA news agency.
Mohammad-Reza Khatami, who also heads the left-wing reformist coalition that dominates parliament, predicted that his brother would win more than 20 million votes in the 2001 polls.
Khatami, who rode to power in May 1997 on 60 percent of the country's vote, is nicknamed "the president with 20 million votes."
His brother was also optimistic that the president's reform program would succeed, adding that it would require "transparency in a critical examination of social problems."
He said political parties and the press both had a role to play in helping the reforms succeed.
"It is for this reason that the opponents of reform have launched a campaign against the press and the students," he said in reference to the arrest of journalists and bans on reformist publications ordered by the conservative-dominated judiciary - TEHRAN (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )