News / Middle East

Moderate Rowhani Declared Winner of Iran's Presidential Elections

Iranian women flash the sign for victory as they hold portraits of moderate presidential candidate Hassan Rowhani during celebrations after he won the Islamic Republic's presidential elections in downtown Tehran on June 15, 2013.
Iranian women flash the sign for victory as they hold portraits of moderate presidential candidate Hassan Rowhani during celebrations after he won the Islamic Republic's presidential elections in downtown Tehran on June 15, 2013.
Carla Babb
Iran's interior minister, Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar, has declared moderate cleric Hassan Rowhani the winner of the nation's presidential election, in a surprise victory over the nation's ruling hardliners.

Rowhani - the favorite of reformists and a former chief nuclear negotiator - received close to 19 million votes out of nearly 37 million counted.  He secured slightly more than 50 percent of the vote, eliminating the need for a runoff.  His closest competitor, Tehran Mayor Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf, trailed far behind, with about 16 percent of the vote.

Supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Hasan Rowhani, shown in poster at center, attend a celebration gathering in Tehran, Iran, June 15, 2013.Supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Hasan Rowhani, shown in poster at center, attend a celebration gathering in Tehran, Iran, June 15, 2013.
x
Supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Hasan Rowhani, shown in poster at center, attend a celebration gathering in Tehran, Iran, June 15, 2013.
Supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Hasan Rowhani, shown in poster at center, attend a celebration gathering in Tehran, Iran, June 15, 2013.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon congratulated Rowhani and encouraged Iranian authorities and the president-elect to play a "constructive role" in regional and international affairs.

The United States also congratulated the Iranian people for their participation in the election, with White House press secretary Jay Carney saying the Obama administration respects the vote.  But Carney's statement pointed out that the election took place against what he described as "government obstacles and limitations," including a lack of transparency, censorship of the media and an intimidating security environment.

Carney said the U.S. hopes the Iranian government will heed its people's will and make choices that create a better future for them. He reiterated the U.S. willingness to engage Iran directly to reach a diplomatic solution to concerns over its nuclear program.

About 50 million Iranians were eligible to vote in Friday's election, putting the turnout at above 70 percent.

This is Iran's first presidential vote since Mr. Ahmadinejad's disputed re-election in 2009 spawned widespread protests and a bloody crackdown by the government. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was constitutionally barred from a third consecutive term.

Analysts say high interest in the carefully orchestrated campaign may have been due to Rowhani's candidacy.

As president-elect, Rowhani will prepare to take on an economy struggling with high unemployment and inflation and crippled by international sanctions over Iran's disputed nuclear program.  

Excluding Rowhani, most of the six candidates vying for the presidency were considered hardliners loyal to the country's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.  Rowhani is also said to have a close relationship with Mr. Khamenei.

While the new president-elect has vowed to improve ties with the international community, the election outcome is unlikely to significantly alter Iran's relationship with the rest of the world, as major policy decisions rest with the supreme leader.

You May Like

UN Fears Rights Violations in China-backed Projects

UNHCHR investigates link between financing development and ignoring safeguards for human rights More

Boko Haram Violence Tests Nigerians’ Faith in Buhari

New president has promised to stem insurgency; he’s scheduled to meet with President Obama at White House July 20 More

Social Media Network Wants Privacy in User’s Hands

Encryption's popularity in messaging is exploding; now it's the foundation of a new social network More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.

VOA Blogs