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News number: 9203181836

16:11 | 2013-06-12


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Leader: Opposing Views of Candidates Prove Freedom of Speech in Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei underlined that the opposing views expressed by the Iranian presidential candidates in their televised debates show freedom in Iran.

"The remarks made by the 8 candidates with 8 tendencies and views in their televised and radio debates informed people of their different thoughts and views and showed the freedom of speech in the Islamic Iran," Ayatollah Khamenei said, addressing a large number of people in Tehran on Wednesday on the threshold of the June 14 presidential election.

He said that the televised debates abashed the countries which accused the Islamic Republic of preventing the freedom of speech.

Ayatollah Khamenei described the full presence of all political and intellectual streams and their different views in the debates as one of the strong points of this year's election, and said, "Of course, I have some facts and words on the comments raised in the debates and God wiling I will state them after the election, but anyway, this move was very good and gladdening."

The 11th round of the presidential election and the 4th round of Islamic City and Village Councils election will be held in Iran on June 14.

Iranian voters will go to over 66,000 polling stations inside and outside the country on June 14 to elect their next president.

Campaigning for the June 14 presidential election kicked off in Iran on May 22 after the Guardian Council released the list of 8 qualified candidates, although 6 have remained now.

The qualified candidates represent a wide range of political streams from Principlists to reformers.

There are now 6 candidates left in the race after two of them quitted. They include Tehran Mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, Former Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati, Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Secretary and chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, former SNSC Secretary and chief nuclear negotiator Hassan Rouhani, former Oil and Telecommunication minister Seyed Mohammad Qarazi, former Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) and Secretary of the Expediency Council Mohsen Rezayee.

Campaigning will continue up to June 13, that is 24 hours before the start of the election.