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by Gathering Iran category: Cause
The Truth Behind Iran's Presidential Election Travesty
Mohammad Mohaddessin is chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National Council of Resistance of Iran.
Since its foundation, the clerical regime ruling Iran has used false elections to paint a democratic picture of its tyrannical rule across the world. Unfortunately, for different motives, some western politicians and governments acknowledge this and try to invest in the power-jockeying between the so-called “moderate” and “hardliner” factions in the Iranian regime, a competition they deem authentic.
If not stemming from economic interests and political considerations, this logic is rooted in a flawed assessment of the structure governing the religious dictatorship ruling Iran. This erroneous line of thinking and the decisions it has resulted in have come at a huge cost to peace and stability in the region and across the globe.
Iranians vote in the twelfth presidential election on May 19, 2017 in the city of Qom, south of the capital Tehran, Iran. (Photo by Majid Saeedi/Getty Images)
The nature of the Iranian regime, its dynamics, balance of power and inner currents all prove that elections within the country in no way relate to the democratic traditions known in the West. Iran's presidential elections are in fact a 20th century façade draped over an outdated regime that is the ideological mirror image of ISIS.
Khomeini, the founder of this regime and creator of the theory of Velayat-e Faghih (Guardianship of the Islamic Jurist), explicitly described the Islamic rule as the “Absolute Reign of the Islamic Jurist” in which the Supreme Leader can overrule the vote of the entire population. He has stipulated, “We want a caliph that severs hands and stones to death.”
The Iranian regime’s officials assert that religious boundaries override geographical ones. Under such a reign, elections are no more than a mockery of democracy.
Under the regime’s laws, only people who have heartfelt belief and practical obligation to the Supreme Leader are eligible to run for the office of president. Candidates are vetted by the Guardian Council, a twelve-member body, six of which are directly appointed by the Supreme Leader and the rest chosen by the head of the judiciary branch—who is again put in place by the Supreme Leader.
More than 1,600 people registered for this year’s elections, six of which made it to the final round. Even former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005-2013), who previously had the full favor of Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader, was disqualified due to his fallout with the regime’s leader in the final years of his presidency.
The Iranian regime’s president is not a decision maker. According to article 110 of the constitution, the Supreme Leader is the sole proprietor of most powers that countries such as the United States and France grant to their president, judiciary and the legislative. The Supreme Leader answers and has clearance to override the paltry authorities that the president assumes.
Millions of Iranians seek freedom and democracy for their country. Since 1979, the Iranian regime has executed more than 120,000 people, including women, children, ethnic and religious minorities; and in a horrific crime against humanity 30,000 political prisoners were massacred in the space of a few months in 1988 on the charge of "Moharebeh", or waging war on God, simply because of their opposition to the regime.
The crime against humanity has continued under the current mullah’s president in Iran, Rouhani - who claims to be moderate - and has actually gained momentum incomparable to his predecessors. Amnesty International and the UN special rapporteur for human rights in Iran have in various occasions expressed concerns over the rise in executions under Rouhani.
The recent acceleration of human rights abuses such as hanging of Gholamreza Khosravi under the religious pretext of "Moharebeh" has raised serious concerns about the safety of political prisoners in Evin ward 350, who took part in peaceful pro-democracy protests and in other dungeons of the Mullah’s regime who rose up in support of the battered prisoners in Evin. There are serious concerns about the inhumane torture and arbitrary execution of the religious minorities such as Sunni and Kurdish political prisoners in Iran.
We ask all freedom loving people from all ethnicity and origins to support our campaigns and join our call for an end to executions in Iran and a halt to repression