U.S. President Barack Obama said on Tuesday there appeared to be few policy differences between Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his reformist rival Mir Hossein Mousavi. In a television interview, the American leader expected tough future negotiations with Iran no matter who was in the government.
"The difference between Ahmadinejad and Mousavi in terms of their actual policies may not be as great as has been advertised," he told CNBC. "Either way we are going to be dealing with an Iranian regime that has historically been hostile to the United States," he added.
Meanwhile in Tehran, the Supreme Leader stated that vandalizing public property is not related to presidential candidates or their supporters. "Some people are against the unity of the Iranian nation and the solidarity of the Islamic system," Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei told representatives from the four candidates in Iran's presidential election and officials from the Guardian Council and the Interior Ministry.
"Such acts and vandalism and some crimes that were committed are not related to the candidates' supporters but to disturbers of peace and all should stand against them," Khamenei went on to say. According to him, all candidates are backing the principles of the Islamic Republic and support peace in the country and the election should not cause divisions.
"If the election result had been other than this, such incidents would have occurred nonetheless," he said.
Ayatollah Khamenei said a recount of the vote could be held, should the investigations show such a measure is required. "Those in charge of supervising the elections are always trustworthy people, but this should not prevent an investigation into possible problems and clarifying the truth," Khamenei concluded.