- Title: IRAN: President Ahmadinejad enjoys a second surprise triumph, Iranians react
- Date: 14th June 2009
- Summary: TEHRAN, IRAN (JUNE 13, 2009) (REUTERS) STREET TRAFFIC LIGHT MAN READING NEWSPAPER (SOUNDBITE) (Farsi) UNIDENTIFIED MAN, SAYING: "Yesterday there was a lot of conflict and they announced some results but we don't care who becomes president, and who doesn't." MEN AT NEWSPAPER STAND
- Reuters ID: LVA4AYK5MR2ZADLWBZ415BY49AG4
- Duration: 00:00:32
- Topics: Domestic Politics
- Story Text: Iranians on Saturday (June 13) reacted to the country's bitterly-fought presidential race, with hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad taking an unassailable lead.
"Yesterday there was a lot of conflict and they announced some results but we don't care who becomes president, and who doesn't," said one voter.
With the incumbent's main challenger buying the vote of Iran's youth, one man said that it was Mousavi's policies in education that secured the backing of the student community.
As conservative Ahmadinejad enjoyed a second triumph, the capital's newspaper headlines read: "News of the Victory of a Nation", "The Nation Surprised Us" and "An Unprecedented Vote."
While his re-election was not a major upset, the scale of his first-round victory stunned Mousavi, whose campaign had drawn tens of thousands onto the streets of Tehran during three weeks of campaigning.
It was not the first time Ahmadinejad, a blacksmith's son and former Revolutionary Guard, defied predictions. Four years ago the relative unknown stole the show by defeating powerful former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani in a run-off vote.
In his first term in office Ahmadinejad became known to the outside world for his fierce rhetoric against the United States and Israel, his proud promotion of Iran's nuclear programme, and persistent questioning of the Holocaust.
But Friday's (June 12) election was also seen as a referendum on his handling of an oil exporting economy which enjoyed a surge in petrodollar revenues on his watch -- a boom which critics say he squandered.
Ahmadinejad, 52, championed Iran's devout poor, especially those in rural areas, who felt neglected by past governments and helped sweep him to power in 2005.
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