June 25, 2009

CHOOSE THE REPUBLIC:

A Deal To Save Iran?: The Daily Beast’s Reza Aslan reports that Iran’s clerics may be close to forcing a compromise from the Supreme Leader—one that would entail a run-off election between Mousavi and Ahmadinejad. (Reza Aslan, 6/25/09, Daily Beast)

Reliable sources in Iran are suggesting that a possible compromise to put an end to the violent uprising that has rocked Iran for the past two weeks may be in the works. I have previously reported that the second most powerful man in Iran, Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, the head of the Assembly of Experts (the body with the power to choose and dismiss the Supreme Leader) is in the city of Qom—the country’s religious center—trying to rally enough votes from his fellow Assembly members to remove the current Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei from power. News out of Iran suggests that he may be succeeding. At the very least, it seems he may have gained enough support from the clerical establishment to force a compromise from Khamenei, one that would entail a run-off election between Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his main reformist rival Mir Hossein Mousavi.

Reports of the possible compromise, though unconfirmed, are coming from multiple sources. Considering the Guardian Council’s tacit admission that there were indeed some voting irregularities (at least 50 cities in Iran reported more than 100% voter turnout—some as much as 140%), as well as the refusal of many senior members of Iran’s parliament, including the powerful speaker Ali Larijani, a close ally of Khamenei, to accept the election results (Ahmadinejad’s presidential victory party last night drew less than a third of Parliament’s members, with Larijani a conspicuous no-show), there is reason to believe that the regime may be willing to accept some kind of compromise.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 25, 2009 4:38 PM
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