Monday, May 30, 2005

Qalibaf camp eager for televised debate with Rafsanjani

Qalibaf camp eager for televised debate with Rafsanjani: "Election countdown
Qalibaf camp eager for televised debate with Rafsanjani
TEHRAN, May 30 (MNA) -- The spokesman for the campaign headquarters of presidential candidate Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf thanked Expediency Council Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani here on Monday for agreeing to take part in a radio and televised debate with Qalibaf.
According to opinion polls, Qalibaf and Rafsanjani are the two main rivals in the presidential race and enjoy the greatest public support, Mohsen Bahrami stated.

He noted that a televised debate between the two candidates would help familiarize the electorate with their policies, plans, and outlooks.

“And this will naturally lead people to vote more wisely in the election.”

Larijani says justice would be main principle in his ‘Government of Hope’

Presidential candidate Ali Larijani said on Monday that justice would be one of the main principles of his “Government of Hope”.

The former IRIB radio and television network director told a group of people in Zabol, Sistan-Baluchestan Province that the judicial and security organizations play a key role in the campaign against economic corruption, adding, “Today the country is in need of serious surgery to heal the wounds of corruption.”

He also said that the people should be completely informed about the financial status of government officials.

Election day is best opinion poll: Ahmadinejad

Tehran Mayor Mahmud Ahmadinejad said on Monday that the best opinion poll on the presidential candidates would be held on election day, June 17.

“I only entered the presidential race after conducting comprehensive studies and will remain a servant of the people until the end,” he told a massive crowd in Bandar Abbas, Hormozgan Province.

Referring to various problems among the nation’s youth, the presidential candidate said that these problems are mainly due to the fact that executive branch officials have distanced themselves from Islam and the people.

Ahmadinejad noted that establishing justice is the main duty of an Islamic government, adding that without justice there is no freedom, independence, or real progress.

Karrubi advocates “friendship among civilizations”

The head of the campaign headquarters of presidential candidate Mahdi Karrubi said on Monday that Karrubi plans to follow a foreign policy based on “friendship among civilizations”.

Karrubi has had some useful experiences in managerial posts and has always respected the Constitution, Ali Akbar Mohtashamipur told reporters in Mashhad.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Mohtashamipur said, “Rafsanjani’s presence in the election means he has to accept criticism and refrain from giving inadequate responses to those political groups that criticize his approaches.”

A variety of candidates from both the reformist and conservative factions would lead to a greater turnout in the poll, he added.

Minister says military barred from campaign activities

In a letter to the secretary of the Guardian Council, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, on Monday the interior minister ordered the country's military forces to keep out of the June 17 presidential elections.

"According to the law and the top commander's directives, armed forces and the police are banned from intervention at the election," said Abdolvahed Musavi Lari.

"The ban equally applies to the Revolutionary Guards, the Basij, the army and law enforcement officers," the minister has stated in the letter.

The directive means that soldiers and policemen are forbidden to participate in the election campaigns, said the minister."