#1 "Calling Jimmah Carter :Iran election rivals both declare victory."
06-12-2009, 06:38 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
Iran election rivals both declare victory
Debates between the rivals have triggered popular interest in the vote
The two main candidates in Iran's presidential election have claimed victory, after extended voting as huge numbers of people turned out to vote.
Reformist challenger Mir Hossein Mousavi told a news conference that he had won by a substantial margin.
However, state media said hardline President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had won, and officials said he had got 69% of the 10 million votes so far counted.
But Mr Mousavi has complained of some voting irregularities.
He said there had been a shortage of ballot papers and millions of people had been denied the right to vote.
His election monitors were not allowed enough access to polling stations, he added, saying he would deal seriously with any fraud.
"[We] are waiting for the counting of votes to officially end and explanations of these irregularities to be given," Mr Mousavi said. "We expect to celebrate with people soon.
"We hope that authorities in charge do their work in this regard."
Surge of interest
Electoral commission chief Kamran Daneshjoo said Mr Ahmadinejad had gained about seven million of the 10 million so far counted, compared with three million for Mr Mousavi.
But the BBC's Jon Leyne in Tehran says that most of these votes come from rural areas, where Mr Ahmadinejad is considered to be stronger.
With the count in its early stages, our correspondent says, the rival declarations could be a case of the two candidates just sending a warning.
06-12-2009, 06:50 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
Something Is Happening Outside Iran, Too
The Guardian's David Shariatmadari, who is half Iranian, writes about casting his vote in Maida Vale, west London:
It had never occurred to me that I might be able to vote in the Iranian elections. My dual nationality had always seemed like a practical arrangement: as the son of an Iranian man, I can't travel to Iran on my British passport. So, in my early 20s, and planning my first visit there, I had to apply for Iranian one. It took more than a year, and I resented the fact that so many obstacles were put in the way of a simple trip to see my uncle and aunts, the town my dad grew up in, my grandfather's grave. But it turns out there's something the Iranian state has given me in return for all the hassle: a vote.
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