Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 32 n° 106

The Iranian regime risks exacerbating the outbreak of covid-19

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 26 febbraio 2020

OFFICIALLY, IRAN’S hardliners won the parliamentary elections on February 21st by a landslide. They scooped over three-quarters of the legislature’s 290 seats and claimed a mandate for their confrontational stance towards America. Reformers and moderates, who seek more engagement with America and the West, did poorly. Turnout was the lowest in a parliamentary election since the Islamic revolution in 1979, but that was because of “negative propaganda” about the threat of the coronavirus by Iran’s enemies, said the supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The election, he said, showed Iran’s “unique attention to democracy”.Hogwash. The regime is so unpopular that it needed to rig the poll in advance (more so than usual). More than half of those who applied to be candidates were rejected, including 90 sitting MPs, mostly reformers and moderates. In some areas, such as Tehran, the moderate and pro-reform bloc boycotted the poll because of the mass disqualification of their candidates. The low turnout was due less to the coronavirus and more to the belief that the election was a sham. Though Mr Khamenei called voting “a religious duty”, only 42% of those eligible cast a ballot, down from 62% in 2016. This was widely seen as a rebuke to the regime. (By The Economist)

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