Iranian cleric urges presidential candidates to set aside rivalries

Tasnim – A top Iranian cleric called on the candidates competing for the presidency to put aside rivalries and establish friendly ties now that election campaigns are over.

Addressing worshippers in Tehran on Friday, Ayatollah Mohammad Ali Movahedi Kermani said the time has come for the presidential candidates to have amicable relations with the conclusion of the electoral competitions and televised debates.

From now on, the candidates should feel bound to establish brotherly and cordial ties and to work in cooperation with each other, the cleric added.

Ayatollah Movahedi Kermani also hailed Iran’s security and freedom as a result of unity, revolutionary morale, and obedience to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei.

Iranians headed to the polls as soon as the stations opened on Friday morning. More than 56,400,000 eligible voters can cast their ballots in 63,429 polling stations across Iran.

There are four candidates seeking presidency in the polls, namely incumbent President Hassan Rouhani, Ebrahim Raisi, Mostafa Hashemitaba, and Mostafa Aqa-Mirsalim.

A run-off would be held next Friday if none of the candidates wins a majority, which is at least 50 percent plus one vote.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei was one of the first voters in Friday’s polls.

Calling for maximum turnout in the election after casting his ballot, the Leader said, “I believe that the presidential election is very important. The country’s fate is in the hands of all people who elect head of the executive force. They (people) should pay regard to the significance of this action.”

Ayatollah Khamenei also urged voters to cast their ballots with knowledge and awareness.