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Raeisi highlights friendly cooperation to resolve issues, after ‘very good’ meeting with former election rivals

Iran’s candidates in the June 18 presidential election meet the winner, President-elect Ebrahim Raeisi (Center), on June 30, 2021, at his invitation.

Iran’s President-elect Ebrahim Raeisi says an era of “friendship, cooperation and empathy” has begun for all political groups to work toward resolving the people’s problems, after holding a “very good” meeting with his six former rivals in the June 18 presidential race.

“We had a very good meeting with the presidential candidates, and we hope that such empathetic attitudes will lead to resolving the problems and undoing the knots in people’s lives,” Raeisi said after the Wednesday morning meeting.

The president-elect, who currently serves as the head of the Judiciary, explained that his former rivals expressed their views and proposals on the priorities that they assumed his administration should follow up on during the one month left until his swearing-in ceremony.

Along with Raeisi, Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh-Hashemi, Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh, Alireza Zakani, Naser Hemmati, Saeed Jalili and Mohsen Rezaei were the other six candidates approved by the oversight Constitutional Council to run for president. Jalili and Zakani dropped out of the race in favor of Raeisi, while Mehr-Alizadeh withdrew his bid effectively in favor of Hemmati.

Raeisi won the election in a landslide, garnering over 18 million votes. Rezaei, who finished second, secured 3.4 million.

Raeisi said that during the meeting, which was held at his invitation, different solutions were explored for resolving the country’s problems, some of which had already been raised in election debates.

"All the friends are concerned about the country, the [Islamic] Revolution, resolving problems, and undoing the knots in people’s lives, which is very important,” he added.

In remarks on Monday, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Khamenei praised the six candidates who lost in the election for their decorum and warm congratulatory messages to the president-elect.

The real winners of the election, the Leader said, are the Iranian people and all those who helped bring excitement to the polls.

“Therefore, the candidates who didn’t secure [enough] votes are among the winners as well, and on the contrary, the losers of the election are those who put all their efforts to drive the people away from the ballot box, but the people, with their presence, rejected them and dashed their hopes,” he added.

Ayatollah Khamenei drew a comparison between the Iranian candidates’ cultured demeanor with the scandalous villainy that followed the 2020 presidential election in the US.

He thanked God for the blessing and called on the country’s officials to keep up such spirit.

“One must speak with courtesy and observance of ethical and religious dimensions, without insulting and slandering, rather than picking up the offensive methods of the Americans and [former US President Donald] Trump,” he added.

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