The mayor of Tehran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a former Islamic Revolutionary militia member, wins a landslide victory in the presidential runoff election as votes were being counted Saturday, after a campaign that exposed "deep class divisions in Iran and a widespread desire to rid the country of corruption and cronyism", writes the New York Times.
Mr. Ahmadinejad was said to have won 14.4 million of 23.2 million votes counted, i.e. 61.6 percent of the vote. His opponent, Ali Akhbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a former President of Iran and an influential cleric and businessman, had 8.2 million or 35.9 percent.
In his first public statement since his convincing victory, President-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Saturday he seeks to create a "modern, advanced and Islamic" role model for the world, reports AP.
According to Associated Press, his taped statement, broadcast on state-run radio, appeared aimed at easing worries that his ultraconservative views would clash with Iran's attempts to expand its economy and international ties. Ahmadinejad made no mention of any new policies regarding the social reforms opposed by some of his supporters.
On the picture: victorious Ahmadinejad