Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Constitution does not bar women from running for president: Karrubi

Description of Selected News: "Constitution does not bar women from running for president: Karrubi

Tehran Times Political Desk
TEHRAN (MNA) -- Presidential hopeful Mahdi Karrubi said on Wednesday that he believes the term ‘rejal’ (Arabic for ‘political figure’) mentioned in the Constitution refers to both men and women, so women should be allowed to become presidential candidates.

“Although it is up to the Guardian Council to interpret the Constitution, I have seminary education and spent years in the Majlis, and I do believe that a political figure can be either a man or a woman,” the former Majlis speaker told university students at a meeting in Shahr-e Kord.

Karrubi also said that women’s participation in all political and social spheres will benefit society.

On his decision to participate in the Seventh Majlis elections despite the fact that the qualifications of many reformist candidates were rejected, he stated that he had originally not intended to run in the parliamentary elections but, due to the insistence of his supporters, changed his mind and participated.

He refrained from withdrawing from the Majlis elections to prevent the enemies from taking advantage of the situation and calling it an anti-government measure, he added.

Karrubi stated that he had held a meeting with President Khatami, Musavi Bojnurdi, and other figures in which he explicitly told them that he felt he was a victim in the election and was facing a difficult dilemma. Asked about the possibility that his qualifications would be rejected, he said, “Who dares to reject my competency? Who is more revolutionary than I am? And who was closer to the late Imam Khomeini than I was?”

He added that he had always objected to the Guardian Council’s rejection of the competency of certain candidates."