Ayatollah Khamenei

Iran’s Supreme Leader has thanked the disqualified presidential candidates for their compliance with elections rules.

In a speech to members of Parliament, Ayatollah Kahemeni said on Wednesday May 29: “We should really thank all candidates and those who were not approved by the council and complied with the provisions of law.”

This is the first time Iran’s Supreme Leader has officially made a statement about the controversial disqualification of Ayatollah Hashemi Rafsanjani, the top choice of the reformists, as well as the omission of Esfandiar Rahim Mashai, the current president’s top aide, from the list of candidates.

Many senior figures of the establishment had called on Ayatollah Kahemenei to intervene in the Guardian Council’s decision to disqualify Ayatollah Rafsanjani.

Ayatollah Rafsanjani had said, however, that he would not appeal his disqualification.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had indicated, however, that his camp would try to get Mashai back in the race through the Supreme Leader.