January 25, 2008

LOOKING FOR A FRANCO:

Mayor of Tehran could become a presidential contender (Alan Cowell, January 25, 2008, IHT)

[W]hile [Mohammad-Bagher Ghalibaf, the 46-year-old mayor of Tehran,] comes from the hard-line Islamic revolution tradition - he was once a senior commander of the Revolutionary Guards - he is part of an emerging group of politicians who consider President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to be harming the country's economy through his acerbic anti-Western rhetoric and isolationist policies. [...]

In the two and a half years that he has been in office, Ghalibaf has built numerous bridges and highways, fixed sidewalks and paved streets and has earned himself a reputation as someone who gets things done. As police chief, he enforced mandatory seat belts and orderly driving regulations in a city not known for either. [...]

Ghalibaf did not take issue with the description of "authoritarian modernizer." Before making an administrative decision, he said, he consults widely but, once the decision is made, "we go forward strongly." [...]

Ghalibaf said he had come to Davos to convince foreigners that "in Tehran they can find stable economic opportunities and in Tehran we have got security."

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 25, 2008 12:00 AM
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