Praise and condemnation for Iran's new hardline president

20 June 2021 - 14:00 By Reuters
President of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi.
President of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi.
Image: Majid Asgaripour/WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS

Following are some world reactions to the election of Ebrahim Raisi as president of Iran. Raisi, 60, is a hardline judge who is loyal to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and subject to US sanctions for alleged human rights abuses.

NAFTALI BENNETT, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER

“Raisi's election is, I would say, the last chance for world powers to wake up before returning to the nuclear agreement, and understand who they are doing business with ... A regime of brutal hangmen must never be allowed to have weapons of mass-destruction.” Bennett was speaking to the Cabinet.

VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT

“Relations between our countries are traditionally friendly and good-neighbourly. I hope that your activities in this high post will contribute to the further development of constructive bilateral co-operation in various directions, as well as to the partnership in international affairs. This fully meets the interests of the Russian and Iranian peoples, goes in line with the strengthening of regional security and stability,” Putin said in a message to Raisi, according to the Kremlin.

BASHAR AL-ASSAD, SYRIAN PRESIDENT

Assad wished Raisi success “for the good and interest of the steadfast Iranian people in the face of all schemes and pressures that aim to break their will and undermine their independent decision,” according to a Syrian presidency statement.

TAYYIP ERDOGAN, TURKISH PRESIDENT

“Stating my belief that co-operation between our two countries will strengthen during your presidency, I am ready to work together with you,” Erdogan said in a letter sent to Raisi.

SHEIKH MOHAMMED BIN RASHID, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES VICE-PRESIDENT AND DUBAI RULER

“We wish for the Islamic Republic, and for our bilateral relations, stability, continuity and prosperity,” he said in a statement tweeted by Dubai's media office.

ABU DHABI CROWN PRINCE SHEIKH MOHAMMED BIN ZAYED

Sent a message of congratulations, according to state news agency WAM.

HAITHAM BIN TARIQ AL-SAID, SULTAN OF OMAN

Congratulated Raisi on his victory, Oman's state news agency ONA reported.

TAMIM BIN HAMAD AL-THANI, QATAR'S EMIR

Sent a message to Raisi “wishing him success as well as further development and growth of the relations between the two countries,” state news agency QNA said.

SHEIKH NAWAF AL-AHMAD AL-SABAH, KUWAIT'S EMIR

Messaged Raisi, “wishing him further success and wellness, as well as the friendly Islamic Republic to further progress and prosper,” according to KUNA state news agency.

MUSTAFA AL-KADHIMI, IRAQ'S PRIME MINISTER congratulated Raisi by phone, according to a Tweet by the prime minister's office, and expressed his hopes for further co-operation on economic and security matters “in addition to the fight against terrorism, and in a way that boosts the security and stability of the two countries and the region.”

BARHAM SALIH, IRAQI PRESIDENT

“I extend my sincere congratulations and blessings on the occasion of your election as President of the Islamic Republic of Iran ... We in Iraq look forward to strengthening our solid relations with our neighbour Iran and its people.”

MICHAEL PAGE, DEPUTY MIDDLE EAST DIRECTOR, HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH

“Iranian authorities paved the way for Ebrahim Raisi to become president through repression and an unfair election. As head of Iran's repressive judiciary, Raisi oversaw some of the most heinous crimes in Iran’s recent history, which deserve investigation and accountability rather than election to high office.”

AGNES CALLAMARD, SECRETARY GENERAL AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL

“That Ebrahim Raisi has risen to the presidency instead of being investigated for the crimes against humanity of murder, enforced disappearance and torture, is a grim reminder that impunity reigns supreme in Iran. We continue to call for Ebrahim Raisi to be investigated for his involvement in past and ongoing crimes under international law, including by states that exercise universal jurisdiction.”

MARYAM RAJAVI, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE PARIS-BASED NATIONAL COUNCIL OF RESISTANCE OF IRAN

“Ebrahim Raisi, the henchman of the 1988 massacre and murderer of the Mujahedin-e Khalq (PMOI/MEK), is Khamenei’s final bid to preserve his regime. Weak, crisis-riddled, and rattled by looming uprisings, Khamenei purged all rivals to install Raisi as president, one of the vilest criminals against humanity since World War 2.”

MAHDI AL-MASHAT, HEAD OF THE HOUTHI MOVEMENT'S POLITICAL OFFICE

Sent a message of congratulations to Raisi on his victory, al-Masirah TV reported.

HAZEM QASSEM, HAMAS SPOKESPERSON IN GAZA

“We congratulate the Islamic Republic of Iran for the success of the democratic process, the holding of the presidential election and the victory of Ebrahim Raisi as Iran’s President. We wish the Islamic Republic of Iran progress and prosperity. Iran has always been a fundamental and a real supporter of the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian resistance.”

YOUSSEF AL-HASSAYNA, ISLAMIC JIHAD OFFICIAL IN GAZA

“Once again the people of Iran have reiterated their commitment to the path of revolution and its regime. We congratulate the Islamic Republic and the people of Iran on this great achievement.” 


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