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18 January 2012 - 19:13

Iran's First Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi said one of the principals of democracy in the years after the Islamic revolution has been holding elections and the upcoming Majlis (parliament) election would also be competitive.

On the sidelines of a ceremony held to honor the martyrs of Iran's nuclear industry, Rahimi spoke to Khabar Online correspondent on what some political factions suggested that since the reformists are not running for the Majlis election, the poll will be noncompetitive.
 
"One of the honors of the Islamic Republic of Iran is to hold free and competitive elections. We have special rules on the issue which have set the conditions of voters and candidates," he said.
 
 "Moreover, the executive bodies of the election are selected by people and finally the Guardian Council will have the final judgment on the qualification of the nominees," Rahimi added.
 
Earlier the executive bodies of the Interior Ministry disqualified many registered candidates mostly those who are among the critics of the government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
 
 Several reformist nominees as well as Principlist figures including Ali Mottahari and Hamid Reza Katouzian who are currently the members of the Majlis were disqualified by the Interior Ministry.
 
The candidates who have been disqualified by the Interior Ministry may refer their case to the Guardian Council which supervises the elections in Iran and has the final say on vetting the nominees and defining their qualification.
 
More than 4500 nominees have registered for the Majlis election. The poll is scheduled to be held on March 2, 2012.
 
Rahimi suggested that elections in the Islamic Republic of Iran are among the most democratic ones in the world: "Obviously in all countries, the elections are governed by rules and some are not qualified to run for elections, so they are not approved by the supervising organizations."
 
"However, if some candidates are wrongly disqualified, their case will be reconsidered by the top monitoring bodies," Iran's First Vice President added. 
 
He then responded to a question on the government's plan for protecting the lives of Iranian nuclear scientists.
 
"In the early 1390 (began on March 21, 2011) the President ordered for taking more powerful measures to protect the lives of our nuclear scientist. He stressed that all who are involved in our nuclear program must be guarded," Rahimi said.
 
Recently, on January 11 an Iranian nuclear official Mustafa Ahmadi Roshan was killed by a magnetic bomb a motorcyclist attached to his vehicle in Tehran. He was the deputy director of marketing at Iran's Natanz nuclear facility.
 
Earlier an Iranian scientist, Darioush Rezaeinejad, 35 was shot dead in Tehran by gunmen in July 2011, while he and his wife were waiting for their child outside a kindergarten.
 
 Last year in November, terrorists detonated bombs attached to the vehicles of two professors of Shahid Beheshti University in Tehran Majid Shahriari and Fereidoun Abbasi Davani [now The head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization] in two different occasions. Shahriari was killed immediately and Abbasi Davani and his wife suffered minor injuries.
 
In January 2010 another Iranian scientist Masoud Ali Mohammadi, 50, professor of Tehran University was assassinated in front of his home in Tehran, while leaving for university.
 
Ali Mohammadi was also killed when a motorbike carrying a remote-controlled bomb, blasted the bomb in the street outside his home in northern Tehran.
 
Iranian officials have blamed Israel's Musad and the West powers for the terrorist attacks against Iranian scientists.
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