Iran's supreme leader tells Ahmadinejad not to run again for president

Ahmadinejad had not announced any plans to run in the vote scheduled for May, but has made several speeches in recent months, prompting speculation of a political comeback.

By REUTERS
September 26, 2016 12:48
1 minute read.
Ahmadinejad

Former Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (second left) visits the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

DUBAI - Iran's supreme leader has told former hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad not to stand again in next year's elections, state media reported on Monday, effectively eliminating a major challenger to pragmatist incumbent Hassan Rouhani.

Ahmadinejad had not announced any plans to run in the vote scheduled for May, but has made several speeches in recent months, prompting speculation of a political comeback.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


Commentators had suggested the firebrand populist, who frequently enraged the West with his rhetoric during his eight years in office, would have given Iran's conservatives their best chance of regaining power.

But the instruction by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, reported by state news agency IRNA, effectively destroys his chances of getting the wider backing he would need to run a successful campaign.

"He (Ahmadinejad) came to me and I told him not to stand as I think it is not in his interest and that of the country," Khamenei was quoted as saying.

"It will create bipolar opposites and divisions in the country which I believe is harmful," Khamenei added.

Rouhani's popularity surged after last year's deal with world powers that lifted most sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbs on its nuclear program.



Another potential rival - Revolutionary Guard Commander Qassem Soleimani, the most high-profile face in the fight against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria - said this month he would not stand in the vote.

Ahmadinejad was first elected president in 2005. His disputed win in the 2009 election prompted the Islamic Republic's biggest protests and a security crackdown in which several people were killed and hundreds were arrested.

Iranian law bars a president from seeking a third consecutive term. But Ahmadinejad would have been able to run again after the gap caused by Rouhani's term.

Related Content

July 22, 2018
Israel evacuates hundreds of Syrian White Helmets in humanitarian effort

By SETH J. FRANTZMAN