Former Foreign Minister: Principalists need mechanism for decreasing number of candidates

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Former Foreign Minister Manuchehr Motakki, who is currently the Deputy Chief of the Front of Disciples of the Line of the Imam and Leadership, at the weekly meeting of the Front for the Patrons of Guardianship has said that “a mechanism must be defined for decreasing the number of candidates”. “As in the future election a notable number of candidates put themselves forward, but the reduction of candidates is an important discussion that is put forward amongst organizations and also rational leaders…it is better that before the reduction of candidates a mechanism is defined and on the basis of this mechanism decisions are made and the solution is that the candidates participate in this and the ordering of this mechanism and together reach an agreement”. The prominent figure and central committee member of the Islamic Coalition Party, Asadollah Asgarowladi has called allegations by a pro-Ahmadinejad government newspaper that he is in touch with “England” a “pure lie”, reports the Iranian Labour News Agency. “It is around two years that they [i.e. United Kingdom] haven’t given me a visa and I have not travelled to England, and my money was blocked and the pictures they showed of me in the Western media are from previous years”. Gholam Ali Haddad Ali, the leader of the Principalist faction in the Majles, in the course of a gathering in Isfahan denied that Mojtaba Khamenei, the son of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, transported a truck of gold bars out of the country in 2009. He also denied that his own granddaughter, the daughter of Mojataba and Haddad Adel’s daughter, was conceived through expensive in vitro treatments in London to the amount of some £1 million. Haddad Adel also criticized the BBC and Voice of America, claiming that they are partners in “200 years of crimes” against Iran. Hojjat al-Islam Ebrahim Raisi, the first deputy of the Judiciary during a speech in Mashhad announced that the trial of Mehdi Hashemi, the son of former President Ali Akbar Rafsanjani, will be held soon. Hossein Mozaffar, an MP for Tehran, has been appointed chief of the 2+1 electoral coalition of Principalist politicians comprising, Gholam Ali Haddad Adel, Ali Akbar Velayati and Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf. Fars News suggest that Mozaffar will probably head the election campaign of the final candidate chosen from amongst the three. Farda News has an op-ed which suggests that Gholam Hossein Elham, the government spokesman and Ahmadinejad ally, will become a candidate in the June 2013 presidential election. He also said that it is likely that the Endurance Front for the Islamic Revolution will support Elham, in order to avoid dissension in Principalist circles. Alaeddin Boroujerdi, the head of the Majles’ Foreign Policy and National Security Commission has told Khane-ye mellat, “the P5+1 is culpable for the failure of nuclear negotiations”. “The nuclear activities of the Islamic Republic of Iran are in the framework of the NPT treaty and regulations of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Now Amano can say whatever he wants”. He added, “the nuclear meeting in Istanbul with the presence of the Iranian negotiating team and the P5+1 was held and took 16 hours. In the end all the members of the P5+1 said that the actions of Iran are legal…when all the members of the P5+1 are under the influence of the American authorities, the result of those negotiations will become what Amano announced”. Recently IAEA chief Yukiya Amano said that he is not optimistic about the progress of Iran’s negotiations with the IAEA and it appears that it is this statement to which Boroujerdi is reacting.