Iran Election Watch 2016: High numbers register to run in parliamentary and Assembly of Experts elections

With the end of registration for aspiring candidates who want to participate in Iran’s upcoming 2016 parliamentary and Assembly of Experts elections, Minister of Interior Abdol-Reza Rahmani-Fazli announced a high turnout. According to government figures 12123 people registered for parliamentary elections, over 100 percent more than in the previous 2012 election, while 801 individuals registered…



Iran Election Watch 2016: Larijani refuses to join conservative electoral alliance

The Principalist Alliance Central Council (PACC) has been formed, with Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel as its spokesman, in the hopes of uniting Iran’s conservative current in the lead up to the 2016 parliamentary election. But Ali Larijani’s refusal to join could sustain or even strengthen conservative disunity in this election and beyond. As we have argued…



Iran Election Watch 2016: Trends to watch for in the upcoming Iranian parliamentary elections

Iran’s Islamic Consultative Assembly, or parliamentary, elections fast approach on 26 February 2016. This short article looks at trends which may shape the disposition of Iran’s political forces ahead of this vote. The election is particularly important because, as with other Iranian legislative elections, it could reshape the balance of power in the Islamic Republic…



Iranian armed forces deputy chief joins cacophony against American “infiltration”

A recent speech by the Iranian armed forces deputy commander underlies President Hassan Rouhani’s relative isolation when it comes to the Islamic Republic’s campaign against American “infiltration”. At an event on Thursday 12 November 2015 commemorating the death of Hassan Tehrani-Moghaddam, a father of Iran’s missile program, a new and influential voice was added to…



Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s conditional approval of the Iran nuclear deal

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has conditionally approved the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), more conventionally known as the Iran nuclear deal, for implementation. But the conditions he’s place on the implementation of the deal highlight his ambivalence about it, with serious potential long-term ramifications for Iran’s political future. Context The road to…



Interview – Surge in anti-American hostility in Iran is setback for jailed US reporter

IranPolitik co-founder and managing editor Farzan Sabet recently conducted an interview on the anti-“infiltration” campaign in Iran with the Christian Science Monitor: “Expectations were high that clinching a deal “would automatically enhance Mr. Rouhani’s position to expand social and political freedoms in Iran and resolve other issues in the US-Iran relationship,” says Farzan Sabet, managing…



Ayatollah Khamenei: “Negotiations with America are banned”

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has banned the Islamic Republic from negotiating with the United States. In September 2013, Ayatollah Khamenei gave his consent to nuclear negotiations between Iran and the United States aimed at reaching a final accord, citing the precedence in the history of Shi’a Islam of showing “heroic flexibility” under the…



Khamenei v Rouhani: Consensus gives way to discord after the Iran deal

Nuclear negotiations were one of the few areas of broad consensus among the political elite of the Islamic Republic of Iran. With the nuclear deal in hand, however, underlying tension between moderate and conservative currents in Iran has been increasingly coming to the fore. This tension has manifested in a number of ways, for example…



Ayatollah Khamenei backs the Guardian Council in its dispute with Rouhani

In a speech on Wednesday 09 September 2015, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei discussed the the prospects of negotiations on other issues with the United States and also injected himself into a dispute between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and senior conservative politicians, potentially setting the tone of Iran’s foreign policy and domestic politics for…



The IRGC’s Jafari warns of enemy-backed parties in the mold of new Iranian political organizations

In a press conference on Tuesday 01 September 2015, Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander Majour-General Mohammad-Ali “Aziz” Jafari followed in the footsteps of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in warning against a multifaceted American attempt to penetrate Iran in the post-deal era. On Iran’s role in Syria He presented the IRGC as a…