- Title: Profile: Ebrahim Raisi will be sworn in as Iran's president on August 5
- Date: 2nd August 2021
- Summary: LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM (FILE - JUNE 28, 2021) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.N. HUMAN RIGHTS INVESTIGATOR ON IRAN, JAVAID REHMAN, SAYING: "We have information that prior to the election, people who were calling for credible elections, there were arrests. Journalists were stopped from asking specific questions about the background of the presidential candidate, Mr. Raisi, and there was intimidation towards any issues that were to be raised about his previous role and his previous background."
- Embargoed: 16th August 2021 08:43
- Keywords: 1988 Ebrahim Raisi Hassan Rouhani Iran Israel JCPOA Tehran executions president presidential election
- Location: TEHRAN AND KHUZESTAN PROVINCE, IRAN / JERUSALEM / LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM / GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
- City: TEHRAN AND KHUZESTAN PROVINCE, IRAN / JERUSALEM / LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM / GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
- Country: Iran
- Topics: Middle East,Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA00IEOLV13B
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Iranâ€™s hardline cleric Ebrahim Raisi, who was elected president of the Islamic Republic, will take office on Thursday (August 5).
Raisi succeeds pragmatist Hassan Rouhani, having secured victory at a June 18 election marked by voter apathy over economic hardships and political restrictions.
Rights groups have criticised the election of Raisi in a vote in which prominent rivals were barred from standing.
Raisi, a hardline judge, is under U.S. sanctions over a past that includes what the United States and activists say was his involvement as one of four judges who oversaw the 1988 killings of thousands of political prisoners. Amnesty International has put the number executed at some 5,000, saying it could be higher.
Raisi was Tehranâ€™s deputy prosecutor during the 1988 state-ordered executions. He denies wrongdoing.
Iran has repeatedly dismissed the criticism of its human rights record as baseless and a result of a lack of understanding of its Islamic laws. It says its legal system is independent and not influenced by political interests.
Raisi, like Iran's top authority Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has backed the indirect U.S.-Iranian negotiations in Vienna.
Talks began in April on reviving the 2015 nuclear deal, formally named the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), but have appeared stuck since their sixth round ended on June 20, with no sign when they may resume.
Since 2019, Iran has breached many of the deal's limits on its nuclear programme. Tehran says its nuclear steps will only be reversed if all U.S. sanctions reimposed in 2018 by then U.S. President Donald Trump, who abandoned the deal, are lifted.
U.S. President Joe Biden is seeking to revive and eventually broaden the nuclear pact to put greater limits on Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, as well as constraining its regional activities.
Iran has rejected negotiating a stronger and broader deal.
Under the weight of U.S. sanctions and the worst COVID-19 pandemic impact in the Middle East, Iran's economy remains fragile, with high unemployment and an inflation rate of more than 50%.
Iran has faced nearly continuous protests by workers and pensioners for months over the inflation rate, high unemployment and unpaid wages.
Raisi said his government would start rapid COVID-19 vaccinations to help relaunch the economy.
(Production: Paul Warren)
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