Iran presidential election, remarkably free and fair: Analyst

File photo shows Iranians preparing to cast their ballots in a presidential election.

Rejecting the Western allegations against Iran’s electoral process, a political commentator has hailed the country’s presidential election as remarkable, free and fair, Press TV reports.

“This was really a remarkable election. I think no one can doubt that amongst the six candidates this was a free and fair election,” William Beeman, professor at the University of Minnesota, told Press TV on Monday.

Hassan Rohani emerged victorious in Iran’s 11th presidential election by winning 50.7 percent of the vote.

The Interior Ministry put the voter turnout in the June 14 election at 72.7 percent.

Refuting the Western allegations against Iran’s election over the Guardian Council’s vetting of the hopefuls, Beeman described the electoral process as legal and defensible.

“I have to oftentimes point out to people that Iran is simply following its own Constitution, and following it quite exactly. And when you have more than 660 candidates presenting themselves for the presidency, then there needs to be some method of selection,” Beeman said.

In every democracy there is a method of selecting candidates for the leadership of the country,” he added.

As many as 686 individuals had registered from May 7 to 11 for the June 14 presidential election. The Guardian Council, Iran’s top electoral supervisory body, narrowed down the list to eight candidates.

US Secretary of State John Kerry in late May called into question the credibility of Iran’s presidential election, criticizing the Guardian Council for not approving hundreds of those who had signed up for the race.

Beeman further pointed to the “indirect election” processes in Western countries – such as France, Spain and Britain – where “people don’t even vote for candidates,” and can only elect parties, and party officials choose their leaders.

“And I should point out that in the United States we also have a two-party system and largely without party support. Without the support of the leaders of your party, you aren’t going to get elected. And it also is true that you’re not going to get elected without spending a huge amount of money, billions of dollars really,” Beeman said.

“Iran’s shortened election is in many ways more humane for the candidates and for the population.”

By Press TV


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