Tehran, Iran elected Seyed Ebrahim Raisi as its new president in Friday’s presidential election, with state-run media reporting that his main opponent has conceded his defeat on Saturday.
Raisi, the judiciary chief, was backed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He will replace Hassan Rouhani. Considered a conservative, he was ahead in opinion polls.
Former Central Bank Chief Abdolnasser Hemmati has congratulated Raisi, before an official announcement of results. Interior Ministry said 90 per cent of votes in 13th presidential elections had been counted in which initial counts suggest over 17,800,000 people voted for Raisi.
Raisi has promised to fight corruption and poverty. He has indicated that he would continue indirect talks with the United States on reviving a 2015 nuclear deal while making it clear he will call for sanctions against Iran to be lifted.
The deal struck by the Rouhani administration had a positive impact on the economy. But in 2018, then US President Donald Trump pulled out of the agreement and slapped sanctions which caused rising prices, plunged currency and high unemployment in Iran.
Outgoing president Rouhani, meanwhile, wished success to the president-elect. He praised Iranian voters for their “epic” presence in Friday’s presidential election, saying the turnout has disappointed enemies and ill-wishers.