TEHRAN (Iran News) – Rouhani Stresses Competitive Nature of Presidential Elections. President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that competitiveness is the spirit of elections and falls dead if the spirit is eliminated, referring to the presidential election to be held next month in Iran.
Speaking in a cabinet meeting, President Rouhani referred to the upcoming presidential election in Iran and said that the election is not only aimed at choosing a president to lead the administration, but it is also the event that guarantees the legitimacy of the political system by allowing public’s participation in the polls.
Rouhani warned of the current state of the upcoming elections: “This is very important for us because we cannot leave the ballot box. If you leave the fund, what do you want to replace and it’s too risky that the fund is no longer functioning. “If the system has been preserved so far, it is because of this ballot box and the presence and sacrifice of the people.”
Naming the duties of a president in the Islamic Republic of Iran, Rouhani said all of the decisions taken by the president would be illegitimate if they lack the support of the people.
Pointing to the process of vetting presidential election nominees which is carried out by the Guardian Council, he said that he wished there would be more nominees vetted to secure the competitive essence of the election.
The final list of the eligible nominees for the upcoming Presidential elections which was published by the Guardian Council yesterday caused some disappointment. Rouhani said he has corresponded on the issue with the Supreme Leader of Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei.
Meanwhile he banned the energy-intensive mining of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin for nearly 4 months, as the country faces major power blackouts in many cities.
“The ban on the mining of cryptocurrencies is effective immediately until September 22 … Some 85% of the current mining in Iran is unlicensed,” Rouhani said.
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are created through a process known as mining, where powerful computers compete with each other to solve complex mathematical problems. The process is highly energy intensive, often relying on electricity generated by fossil fuels, which Iran is rich in.
Meanwhile referring to the negotiations taking place in Vienna, Rouhani said that Iran has the upper hand in negotiations.
“Our negotiations now are different from the ones in 2013. Now, Iran has the upper hand in negotiations,” he said.
“We are not talking about the JCPOA right now. The talks about the JCPOA is over and now we are talking about how to allow the United States to return to the deal,” he said, adding, “We are now reviving the JCPOA.”
“We agreed with the P5+1 on important and fundamental issues,” Rouhani said.
Iranian President also noted that the U.S. is the country that left the JCPOA first and it must begin to fulfill its obligations and then return to the deal.