TEHRAN (Iran News) – Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei has called on all Iranians to not only participate in the upcoming presidential election but also encourage others to do so, saying the key to solving the country’s problems is “making the right choice” at the ballot box.
Ayatollah Khamenei delivered a live televised speech to the nation on Friday (June 4) marking the anniversary of the passing away of Imam Khomeini, the late founder of the Islamic Republic.
The Leader said Imam Khomeini viewed elections as a “manifestation of people’s will” and participation in elections as “a religious duty.”
Ayatollah Khamenei warned against attempts by enemies, as well as certain sides at home, to frustrate people and lower the turnout in the presidential election, which is slotted for June 18.
It is said that some are doubtful about going to the ballot box out of dissatisfaction with the country’s economic hardships and livelihood problems, while others say they voted with enthusiasm in earlier elections, but they later grew frustrated after being failed by those whom they voted for, Ayatollah Khamenei said.
“That reasoning is not right” and should not dissuade people from voting, said the Leader, adding that any managerial shortcomings and inefficiencies could be made up for “through making the right and good choice.”
“What would be the solution if there is any weakness in [the country’s] management? Standing aside? Or choosing [instead] a popular and Islamic management in the true sense of the word?” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei further advised voters not to trust mere words and pledges on the part of the presidential candidates, saying, “It is action that counts.”
“The individual’s previous record should be examined to see [if that person] had taken any action that would support his pledge [today],” the Leader said.
The Leader called on all Iranians, from all walks of life, to not just go to the ballot box but also encourage others to do the same.
Ayatollah Khamenei also had a few words with the seven candidates gearing up to contest the forthcoming presidential race.
First, said the Leader, the candidates should avoid making pledges that they are not sure they can fulfill if they win the election, warning that such pledges “would be to the detriment of the country.”
Second, the Leader said, the candidates should be honest in their slogans and refrain from the ones that they don’t believe in.
Third, the candidates should be determined to commit themselves to establishing social justice, fighting corruption, and boosting domestic production, if they win, Ayatollah Khamenei added.
On the Vienna talks, Ayatollah Khamenei also said that that Tehran wanted action and not promises from six world powers for the revival of their 2015 nuclear deal.
“I have told our negotiators that actions, not promises (by the six powers), are needed for the restoration of the nuclear deal,” Khamenei said in a televised speech most notable for his comments about the upcoming controversial presidential poll.
The Supreme of the Islamic Revolution went on to say Iran is stronger than ever as the country marks the 32nd anniversary of the passing away of its revolutionary founder Imam Khomeini.
“I start the discussion from here that among the revolutionary systems and establishments that have been formed in the last one or two centuries, I do not know of any system as much as the Islamic Republic that has been predicted to collapse,” the Leader said.
“From the first day of the revolution, the ill-wishers and those who could not digest and tolerate this great phenomenon, both inside and outside the country, said that the Islamic Republic would not last for another two months, six months or a year,” the Leader said.
“It was one or two years ago when the esteemed Americans said the same thing and a high-ranking American official stated that the Islamic Republic would not see its 40th anniversary. I do not remember so many predictions of decay and collapse to have been made about any other system,” he added.
Ayatollah Khamenei was apparently referring to former U.S. national security advisor John Bolton’s infamous prediction while addressing a terrorist MKO convention in Paris in 2017.
At the conference Bolton said, “The outcome of the president’s policy review should be to determine that the Ayatollah Khomeini’s 1979 revolution will not last until its 40th birthday. And that’s why, before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran.”
“But, thank God, the revolution and the system of Imam Khomeini not only did not collapse and did not stop, but became stronger day by day,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.
“It did not surrender, did not give up and rather showed its independence day by day. It achieved great success and overcame obstacles.”
The Leader said despite many successive political, security, economic obstacles created for Iran, “the Islamic Republic today is more developed than 40 years ago and is ahead in all respects by the grace of God.”
“The question arises, what is the secret of this permanence? Why did the Islamic Republic not face the fate of other revolutions in spite of all this hostility? Here I announce that the glorious and proud secret of this system is two words: the Republic and Islam. The existence created from these two words has every right to remain permanent, because it includes both people and Islam.”
Ayatollah Khamenei said Imam Khomeini’s outstanding initiative was that he created and introduced the idea of the Islamic Republic and then realized it.
“The great work of our esteemed Imam was to create this idea and theory of the Islamic Republic and to introduce it into the field of various political theories, in which there were various Eastern and Western political theories,” the Leader said, adding Imam Khomeini then took action and put his theory into practice.
“The Imam had many initiatives but the Islamic Republic is the most important initiative of the Imam,” the Leader said. “This is the same religious democracy that was recognized as the Islamic Republic.”
Addressing the youth, Ayatollah Khamenei said, “You, the youth, who have not experienced the pre-Revolution era, it is hard for you to feel that era.”
He recollected that people played no role at all in their destiny, especially during the dark tyranny of the Pahlavi dynasty.
“The Imam brought the people to the field with a leaping movement. The nation believed in itself and the Imam used the great capacity of the nation’s ability and will, and with his leadership and guidance, he was able to take it to a stage where he could do great things,” he added.
There was a time, the Leader continued, when the Islamic Republic was a sapling, and now it is a robust tree which cannot be uprooted by any storm.