Leaders of Iran

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Netiran>Articles>Politics>Presidency>Velayati to Run for President

Netiran>Articles>Politics>Presidency>Velayati to Run for President: "Velayati to Run for President

Sharq, Daily Newspaper, No. 282, Sep. 4th, 2004, Page 1-2
Word Count : 635

Former foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati has reportedly decided to run for the 2005 presidential elections. The conservatives have not given their entire go-ahead to his candidacy. Mohammad Javad Larijani, former deputy to Velayati, has recommended him to pull out of the race. The brother of Mohammad-Javad, Ali, may be running for president.




Former veteran prime minister Mir-Hossein Moussavi has kept the reformists on the tenterhooks over his possible bid to stand for the 200 presidential elections. But reliable sources assert that former foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati has made up his mind to run for the vote.

"As long as I know, he has decided to stand for the elections and he has even made the arrangements for his campaigning," Hassan Ghafourifard, core member of far-right Islamic Coalition Society, said.

The competition gains momentum in the lead-up to the presidential elections. If Mr Moussavi agrees to run he will have to contest Velayati. In 1997, two clerics of opposing factions were running but this time two laymen may have to compete.

Velayati will certainly run and the reformists have to put up another candidate in case Moussavi turns them down. Former speaker of parliament Mehdi Karroubi, former minister of higher education Mostafa Moin and former education minister Mohammad-Ali Najafi are rumored to be running for president on the reformist camp.

Ghafourifard says more than 20 nominees are in the limelight on the conservative camp. The most important ones are the top nuclear negotiator Hassan Rohani, former military commander Mohsen Rezaie, MP Ahmad Tavakoli, Tehran mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and former head of the state television and radio Ali Larijani.

Until recently, Larijani was the candidate said to have the biggest change but now Velayati tops the agenda. Rohani is seeking to give a moderate image of himself to win popularity. Tavakoli is the most radical candidate and Mohsen Rezaie may be relying on his past connections to Mehdi Karroubi. The rightist faction may be unwilling to field Tavakoli, Rezaie or even Rohani. Velayati is the best option and Ahmadinejad was put out of the loop. The sole person to drive Velayati out of the loop is the powerful former president, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. He will be the shoo-in if he decides to run.

Rafsanjani should win over all political factions to be able to win the elections and the rightists and the leftists have yet to reach a consensus.

An informed source says even Hashemi Rafsanjani factors a polarized competition to face Moussavi and Velayati. Partisans of Moussavi say the popular man will definitely win the poll but presence of Velayati will sway the outcome of the elections. Election of Moussavi or Velayati will not bring fundamental changes to the Islamic system and even the policies implemented in the 1980s will repeat.

The candidacy of Velayati will let the reformists take a sigh of relief that the conservatives will not change the structure of the country. Disappointed with any progress, the reformists have contented themselves with avoiding further changes.

Velayati has not been recognized as a hardliner and he has 16 years of experience in Iran's diplomatic process. Now the Islamic Republic faces major challenges and his presence is good. Velayati has experience of negotiating with the Westerners and he led both peace and war diplomacies. He maintains friendly ties with the highest authorities. The late revolutionary founder Imam Khomeini supported him. Velayati is a pediatric and has given a cultural image of himself.

The reformists want to be sure of Moussavi's final decision so that they can make up their minds.

However, the coming presidential elections may have three candidates: Velayati, Karroubi and one between Moin and Najafi."

CHN - News 771

CHN - News 771: "Large Prison Compound to be Replaced by a Cultural Center in Tehran


A large cultural complex will soon replace a sprawling prison compound in Tehran. The capital municipality workers tore down tall walls of the Qasr prison on Tuesday as the Prisons Organization handed a large part of it over to the Tehran municipality.

Originally a palace built in the Qajar era, the Qasr prison was the largest detention facility used to incarcerate prisoners of conscience.

Tehran Mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad noted the part of the history of the Islamic revolution has taken shape in Qasr, adding the cultural center to replace the prison should be designed in a way as to ensure the memories and the historical identity of the prison were preserved for the future generations.

The handover of the prison will be carried in several phases, the second and third of which were carried out and the whole project is expected to be completed in a few months.

Currently, the municipality has taken over some 70 percent of the compound and the rest is forecast to be handed over in two months.

The Qasr prison was built in 1789 in the second year of the reign of Fat'halishah of Qajar. It was a royal summer palace that turned into a prison as the Qajars were dethroned and Pahlavi acceded. "

Iran International Magazine - On Agenda

"Iran International Magazine - On Agenda: "New Mayor to Makeover Tehran

""Piety, virtue, candor, efficiency and trustworthiness will be the criterion on which my managers will be selected and this has nothing to do with settling political scores.

Tehran’s second City Council has officially announced the election of Mahmood Ahmadinejad as the new mayor of Tehran, a city of over 10 million, in desperate need of a makeover.

Coming to office with 12 votes for, two abstentions, and only one vote against, Ahmadinejad has governed Ardabil, Makoo and Khoy and has served as a senior advisor to the Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance. Upon taking up his post, Tehran’s new mayor said: "I hope I can use my reputation in achieving justice. I do not believe in shotgun-retribution, but some managers will inevitably be changed. The new managers will be selected on personal criteria, and whoever doesn’t meet the mark must go. You can only be a manager to the extent that you work for the people, and that will be my criteria for selecting my managers. Recommendations are false misgivings. I will not give weight to anyone’s advice during my term as mayor. Some may be displeased with this course of action, but the people’s trust is gained only through dedication to justice".

"Piety, virtue, candor, efficiency and trustworthiness will be the criterion on which my managers will be selected and this has nothing to do with settling political scores. The mayor’s office must be cleansed of corrupt managers and shady monetary and administrative practices". When these visions are put into effect in the next couple of months, Tehran’s municipality will bear witness to profound changes in scores of managerial positions, ranging from deputies to managing directors of the municipality’s affiliated companies. These managers will be replaced by a host of new faces as the first step toward cleansing a city that is long overdue for a makeover.Iran International Magazine - On Agenda: "New Mayor to Makeover Tehran

Tehran’s second City Council has officially announced the election of Mahmood Ahmadinejad as the new mayor of Tehran, a city of over 10 million, in desperate need of a makeover.

Coming to office with 12 votes for, two abstentions, and only one vote against, Ahmadinejad has governed Ardabil, Makoo and Khoy and has served as a senior advisor to the Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance. Upon taking up his post, Tehran’s new mayor said: "I hope I can use my reputation in achieving justice. I do not believe in shotgun-retribution, but some managers will inevitably be changed. The new managers will be selected on personal criteria, and whoever doesn’t meet the mark must go. You can only be a manager to the extent that you work for the people, and that will be my criteria for selecting my managers. Recommendations are false misgivings. I will not give weight to anyone’s advice during my term as mayor. Some may be displeased with this course of action, but the people’s trust is gained only through dedication to justice".

"Piety, virtue, candor, efficiency and trustworthiness will be the criterion on which my managers will be selected and this has nothing to do with settling political scores. The mayor’s office must be cleansed of corrupt managers and shady monetary and administrative practices". When these visions are put into effect in the next couple of months, Tehran’s municipality will bear witness to profound changes in scores of managerial positions, ranging from deputies to managing directors of the municipality’s affiliated companies. These managers will be replaced by a host of new faces as the first step toward cleansing a city that is long overdue for a makeover.

Ahmadinejad: Monorail Can Help Ease Traffic Problems

Iran Daily: "Monorail Can Help Ease Traffic Problems


Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

TEHRAN, Sept. 25--Tehran Mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the monorail system Tehran Municipality is planning to construct in the populous metropolis will help reduce traffic jams, stressing that motorists would be unable to move easily in the capital city in the next five years unless modern transportation means are employed.
According to the Persian daily Javan, the mayor further told reporters on the sidelines of his meeting with Tehran District 10 Municipality officials that the 90-kilometer Tehran monorail will operate on five main routes.
He stressed that the metropolis needs 400 kilometers of monorail, adding that the system is one of the most modern transportation means.
Ahmadinejad said earlier this month that Tehran Municipality will continue to implement the project to construct monorail transport system in the capital city, rejecting strong opposition from experts.
"This is a legal project," the mayor said. "We will not engage in political and press games and will continue to implement this modern project in cooperation with the private sector."
Ahmadinejad's insistence comes amid increasing concerns by some urban experts the monorail system will only add to the city's already nerve-racking noise pollution.
Experts contend that monorail cannot help ease traffic-related problems"