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International | Government & Elections

Struggle over Election Results Continues in Iran
by juan cole (reposted)
Tuesday Jun 16th, 2009 7:40 AM
From a Tuesday, June 16, 2009 entry on Informed Comment a blog run by Juan Cole

Struggle over Election Results Continues in Iran

AP has video of Monday's enormous rally for Mousavi, which defied a government ban on demonstrations.




The USG Open Source Center translates news about the Iranian election and its aftermath from the Iranian press

'Iran's Guardian Council Urges Candidates To Wait For 'Final Result'
Vision of the Islamic Republic of Iran Network 2
Monday, June 15, 2009
Document Type: OSC Summary

Tehran Vision of the Islamic Republic of Iran Network 2 at 1815 GMT on 15 June broadcast remarks by the spokesman of the supervisory Guardian Council in which he urged supporters of presidential candidates to wait for the "final result" of the election to be announced by the council.

Speaking in a live roundtable discussion, Abbasali Kadkhoda'i said: "Offenses in elections are natural; they are not out of the ordinary. We do not want to exaggerate and say that no violation has taken place. No, humans are involved in this affair and human beings are not free of faults. We have had violations in every election (in the past), but the way they were dealt with (is important). The Guardian Council will start its investigation tomorrow. The figures given by our colleagues at the Interior Ministry are preliminary figures. These figures should be investigated and reviewed by the Guardian Council and complaints should be investigated. The final result is the one announced by the Guardian Council. That is to say the council will either approve or reject the soundness of the election. Therefore, my request to the dear candidates and their supporters, who are trying to voice their objections while respecting the law and ethics, is to bear with us. We will investigate and announce the result. The final result will be the one announced by the Guardian Council, which everyone should hopefully accept."

(Description of Source: Tehran Vision of the Islamic Republic of Iran Network 2 in Persian -- state-run television) '


'FYI -- Iran News Network Shows Footage of Pro-Musavi Rally in Tehran
Islamic Republic of Iran News Network Television (IRINN)
Monday, June 15, 2009
Document Type: OSC Summary


Tehran Islamic Republic of Iran News Network Television in Persian at 1748 GMT on 15 June aired footage of a peaceful rally by supporters of defeated presidential candidate Mir-Hoseyn Musavi in protest against the results of the 12 June elections.
The announcer said: "I should say that this afternoon, supporters of Mr Musavi held a gathering between Enqelab and Azadi squares, particularly outside Sharif University. My colleagues have prepared a video report of this rally which we will see together."

The video report was nearly two minutes, showing the slow and peaceful march of protesters in Tehran streets.

This is the first time Iranian domestic TV has been observed to air footage of pro-Musavi protests since Saturday 13 June, when people took to the streets in protest against the results of the election.


(Description of Source: Tehran Islamic Republic of Iran News Network Television (IRINN) in Persian -- State-run 24-hour news channel in Persian, Arabic and English; presenting up to the minute domestic and international news. It offers exclusive interviews on a variety of topics, as well as information on universities, labor, and economic developments from the capital and the provinces.)'

'OSC Report: Iran State Media Dominates, Reformists Struggle in Election Coverage
Iran -- OSC Report
Monday, June 15, 2009
Document Type: OSC Report

Iran: State Media Dominates Election Coverage, Reformists Struggle to Inform State and conservative media portrayed the results of Iran's 12 June presidential election as a landslide victory for incumbent President Mahmud Ahmadinezhad, touted the high voter turnout as validation of the regime's legitimacy, and urged acceptance of the results. Meanwhile, reformist and pro-Rafsanjani media alleged widespread electoral fraud and carried statements calling for "peaceful" protests. While access to state media and television remains unfettered, many reformist websites have been filtered and other communication disruptions appear widespread, possibly impeding transmission of reformist statements. State Media Touts Victory While Challengers Protest Results

State and conservative media reported that congratulations on Ahmadinezhad's victory have poured in from across the region and the world (13-14 June) and portrayed the election results as a win for both the incumbent and the public's trust in Iran's Islamic system. While Iranian TV coverage over the weekend focused on voter turnout, calling it "epic," some regime elites, including Supreme Leader Ali Khamene'i and Ahmadinezhad on 13 June, encouraged public acceptance of the results following street protests, with state media minimizing its footage of the protests. (state television news network IRINN).

Khamene'i and several conservative clerics appeared on state television to urge the candidates and their supporters to accept the election results, while pro-government Mehr News Agency reported that Iran's Prosecutor General Qorban Ali Dori-Najafabadi said the Judiciary would deal decisively with people seeking to create disturbances in the country (14 June).
Appearing on state television on 14 June, Ahmadinezhad described the turnout in the election as "a blow to domineering countries" and said that "Western countries were only interested in the sort of democracy that suited them and there was no reason why they should question the validity of these elections."
On 14 June, IRINN covered a pro-Ahmadinezhad rally but did not broadcast clips or coverage of challengers Mir-Hoseyn Musavi and Mehdi Karrubi. IRINN initially did not show protest footage, but on 14 June began to show disturbances juxtaposed with a gathering of peaceful supporters of Ahmadinezhad and aired man-on-the-street segments calling the protesters criminals.

Media associated with Karrubi, Musavi and Expediency Council head Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani strongly protested the results of the election--although following Khamene'i's remarks, statements from challengers have not been reported in state-run media--and Musavi lodged a formal appeal with the Guardian Council challenging the election results. Conservative candidate Mohsen Reza'i initially was reported to have supported the election's outcome but he later vowed to appeal the decision.

In a statement on his ghalamnews.ir website, Musavi called for peaceful demonstrations in 20 cities on 15 June at 1130 GMT to protest the election results and for a national strike on 16 June. On 14 June he formally appealed to the Guardian Council for the vote to be annulled, according to his website.
On 14 June, Tehran's state-run Vision of the Islamic Republic of Iran Network reported that Reza'i backed the election results. However, in a statement disseminated on Tabnak online, Reza'i called for calm and unity and said he filed a complaint with the Guardian Council regarding the results (14 June). Reformists Struggle to Inform Public Despite Communications Disruptions

Online media have reported detentions and arrests, while filtered and blocked websites employed countermeasures, such as changing their website addresses to remain accessible. SMS and cell phone service from within Tehran has also reportedly been disrupted (pro-Musavi Iranian Labor News Agency, E'temad online, 13 June).

Aftab news online reported that reformist members of the Islamic Participation Front were detained and reporters from Karrubi's reformist E'temad-e Melli newspaper along with several members of the Mujahedin of the Islamic Revolution were arrested.

Widespread rumors of Rafsanjani's resignation from the Assembly of Experts were denied by his son Mohsen Hashemi in an interview with Fars News Agency (Mizan News, 14 June).

The centrist Entekhab news website, which has been very active in protesting the elections results and posting opposition statements, reported filtering of numerous websites, and twice changed its own address (14 June). Tehran Deputy Prosecutor Mahmud Salarkia confirmed website filtering of a number of sites, including Jomhuriyat, Nowruz, mowj.ir, Ayandeh, Entekhab news, and Aftab news (Entekhab news, 13 June). External State Media Outlets Offer More Nuanced Coverage

Meanwhile, Iran's external English-language news service Press TV and Arabic language television Al-Alam carried statements from Ahmadinezhad and his rivals, as well as coverage of street disturbances on 13 June--while they were not observed on state television--probably in an effort to compete with external Arabic and English-language news outlets.'