US says Iran fails to meet international elections standards

The United States criticized Iranian parliamentary elections Friday, saying the country had again failed to meet international standards in conducting them in a democratic manner. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Iran "again used ideological grounds to disqualify candidates parliament, imposed severe restrictions on journalists and media outlets to cover the elections, limited the ability of candidates to campaign and refused to allow independent monitors access to polling stations." He said the Iranian people should be free to chose their government through a free and fair election process. "We urge Iranian leaders to end interference in future elections, including the 2009 presidential election," McCormack said.