As voting begins in Iran, voices unite to call for mass election turnout
As polls open across Iran for the country’s presidential election on Friday, the Islamic Republic’s political, religious, and social spectrum make final calls for mass participation in order to bolster the nation’s standing in the world.
Over the past days, the candidates’ campaign teams organized more political events and rallies, which have been very limited in number and size this year in adherence to the health protocols introduced against the deadly coronavirus pandemic.
The streets across the country have also been reflective of the election mood, with many campaign posters and banners seen on the walls and billboards.
According to Iran’s election law, the candidates had until 7:00 a.m. local time on Thursday to hold campaign events, after which they must observe 24 hours of silence before 7:00 on Friday, when the polls are scheduled to open.
Four candidates will be contesting the presidential election on June 18..
Alireza Zakani became the second candidate to drop out following Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh, urging his supporters to vote for Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi, who is predicted to have the highest chance for election in opinion polls.
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Imam Ali Khamenei, cast his ballot early on Friday.
During his remarks on Wednesday, Imam Khamenei warned American and British media, together with their “mercenaries,” had been attempting to drive a wedge between the Iranian people and establishment by trying to discourage people from participating in the presidential election.
The Leader said Iran’s enemies sought to discourage participation in elections because they knew that if Iran’s establishment did not have people’s support, they would be able to destabilize the country.
He also rejected the notion that the June 18 election is not competitive, and cited the verbal and intellectual clashes that were displayed in the three presidential debates as proof.