Hassan Rohani, reformist candidate for the presidency, became Iran’s president elect with over 18 million votes.
The results were announced by the ministry of interior revealing a gap of 12 million votes with the first runner up, Mohammad Bagher Ghalibof.
Rohani was endorsed by former presidents Mohammad Khatami and Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani. The reformists were hesitant to participate in the elections after the 2009 presidential elections which were marred with allegations of fraud. The reformist candidates of the 2009 elections still remain under house arrest for challenging the results of the last elections.
Rohani has promised in his campaign that he will make every effort to end incarceration of political prisoners.
In addition to serving as a member of parliament Rohani has been a member of the Assembly of Experts, the Expediency Council and the Supreme Council of National Security.
Rohani was responsible for nuclear talks under the Mohammad Khatami's administration. While his successors have criticized his approach, he has defended his report card saying he prevented Iran’s dossier from going to the Security Council.
The nuclear disputes between Iran and the West have since resulted into various sanctions by the UN and most recently the unilateral sanctions imposed on Iran by the US and EU throwing Iran’s economy into turmoil.
Hassan Rohani is faced with great challenges in dealing with the nuclear talks, addressing Iran’s economic problems and addressing the political demand for the release of political prisoners.