Monday, May 23, 2005

Candidates Promise To Refrain From Character Assassination

Description of Selected News: "Candidates should refrain from character assassination: EC official

Tehran Times Political Desk
TEHRAN -- Expediency Council (EC) Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani is seeking a peaceful electoral atmosphere and for this reason has told his supporters to refrain from trying to discredit other presidential candidates, the director of the EC Public Relations Department said on Sunday.

Reza Soleimani told the Mehr News Agency that the electoral campaign atmosphere should be sound and clear, and if all candidates seek such an atmosphere no kind of character assassination will be witnessed.

Meanwhile, Mohsen Bahrami, a member of Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf’s election headquarters, said on Sunday that Qalibaf would not cross government red lines in an attempt to attract more votes, since the ends do not justify the means.

The upcoming presidential election is different from the previous ones in that a large number of candidates are running this year, he added.

Bahrami went on to say that this presidential election is multipolar and that is why some candidates do not hesitate to make efforts to discredit their rivals.

In other election news, Amir Ali Amiri, the secretary of presidential hopeful Mohsen Rezaii, on Sunday criticized the measures taken by some candidates to discredit other competitors and said that any candidate who intends to increase his own popularity through discrediting other candidates has in fact manifested his own weakness and the weakness of his supporters.

Such measures will not sit well with the general public, so candidates and their supporters should refrain from character assassination, he observed.

Also, Mohammad Hossein Farhangi, the spokesman of Ali Larijani’s election headquarters, said on Sunday that in a society with media through which candidates can elaborate on their viewpoints, there is no reason for character assassination.

He went on to say that the candidates can criticize each other without discrediting one another, adding that Larijani has repeatedly emphasized that candidates should refrain from trying to discredit each other."