TEHRAN (FNA) Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei said massive participation of the public in 28 state elections since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran (in 1979) has proved the populist system of the Islamic Republic.
“Elections are a manifestation of populism; on the average Iran has experienced an election every year during the last 28 years and this is among the significant indices of the victory of the Iranian nation, because it stages people’s presence, public decision-making and the Islamic (republic) system’s courage to rely on people’s vote and view,” Ayatollah Khamenei said while addressing a large congregation of people and clerics in the central city of Qom on Wednesday.
“The Islamic system is always insistent on holding elections,” he added, calling for a large turnout at the polls.
The Leader further called on the Iranian nation and officials to always remember the value of elections and go to the polls with full hope and trust.
He also dismissed statements made by certain individuals who demand international observation and supervision over the upcoming elections, describing such calls as a shameless insult to the Iranian nation.
“Executive and supervisory officials have always complied well with their duty which is safeguarding people’s votes and the same thing will happen in the elections for the 8th parliament,” Ayatollah Khamenei reiterated.
He also called for clean campaigning during the upcoming parliament elections, and urged candidates and their supporters to abstain from smearing rivals’ reputations.
Political groups and wings should observe correct election behavior and refrain from discrediting and damaging the reputation of individuals in the election campaign, the Leader stressed.
The call by the Supreme Leader comes prior to the March 14 elections expected to be a key indicator for the 2009 presidential vote.