Candidate Wanted by Interpol Registers for Iran Elections

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A member of the Assembly of Experts, Ali Fallahian, formally registered today for Iran’s presidential elections. Fallahian, who is believed to be the infamous “Master Key” in Iran’s notorious “Chain Murders” of dissidents and is wanted by Interpol in connection to the Buenos Aires AMIA bombing, said to reporters after registering, “I will not retreat on any front.”

Fallahian, who was minister of intelligence under Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani’s presidency, added that “Rafsanjani said that he won’t run, so if he decides to run, my reason is justified because a lot of my supporters asked to me promise that I would not step aside in favor of other individuals, and no one would be happy if I don’t fulfill my oath.”

The last time Fallahian ran in the elections was in 2001. He received less than one percent of the total votes.

On foreign policy and Iran’s regional role, Fallahian said, “The arrogant powers’ politics for the region has failed and they are experiencing economic problems.” he added, “We are hopeful that Iran can play a useful part in driving out the arrogant powers and be influential in bringing about stability, security and progress for the region.”

Bahman Sharifzadeh, a cleric close to Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei told Entekhab that Mashaei will register for the presidential elections on Saturday, the final day of registration.

Sharifzadeh said that he saw “no reason for Mashaei’s disqualification” from the Guardian Council. The reporter asked why, then, did Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei write a letter objecting to Mashei’s appointment as Ahmadinejad’s vice president in the president’s second term. Sharifzadeh responded, “This is very misleading to say, that Khamenei did not want Mashaei to become vice president. First, read the letter, and did Khamenei give this letter to be published?”

After the 2009 elections, Ahmadinejad was attacked by hard-liners in Iran for his nomination of Mashaei as his top deputy. Although Ahmadinejad first resisted the criticism from his right, it ultimately took Khamenei’s intervention to persuade Ahmadinejad to give up the appointment.

Regarding Khamenei’s intervention, Sharifazdeh continued, “The contents of the letter from the supreme leader [to Ahmadinejad] was that ‘a group of your friends will be disappointed in this appointment, and it is better that this appointment not take place.’ This sentence screams that the issue was about Ahmadinejad’s friends, and not the supreme leader.” He added, “The next letter from the supreme leader, stating that appointing Mashei in other positions is not a problem, confirms that Khamenei has no issues with Mashaei.”

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Hojat al-Islam Mohammad Bagher Kharrazi, the secretary-general of Hezbollah in Iran, also registered today. Kharrazi said that his four main goals would be to focus on “epic progress, calm, economic relief and health.”

Kharrazi also reiterated statements he had made previously about a “Greater Iran.” He talked about “turning Iran into our Greater Homeland and have our sacred culture reach our Greater Persian Islamic borders, which starts from China and continues unto Africa.”