Iran details election process for Iranian nationals abroad
Press TV -(Tue Jun 11, 2013) Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Araqchi has presented the details of the forthcoming presidential election process for the Iranian nationals living in other countries.
During his weekly press conference on Tuesday, Araqchi said Iran’s 11th presidential election will be held in 96 countries and in 128 Iranian mission headquarters.
Araqchi said that 290 polling stations have been set up abroad and more than 850,000 ballot papers have been dispatched to these stations.
The Iranian official further called on all countries, particularly the European states, to provide the security of the Iranian polling stations and not to allow certain groups with terrorist records to disrupt the election process.
He further said that Iranian nationals in other countries should refer to the websites of Iran’s Foreign Ministry and embassies overseas for detailed information on the polling stations.
Iranians will cast their ballots at over 66,000 polling stations across the country. Nearly 50.5 million Iranians are eligible to vote in the upcoming presidential election.
The president of Iran is elected for a four-year term in a national election. This year’s election will be held on June 14.
US spying on internet users
The Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman strongly condemned the US government’s massive spying program targeting internet users.
Araqchi said Washington’s large-scale surveillance programs on social media are “nothing new” and “violate the democratic values that the US claims to adhere to.”
On June 6, the Guardian revealed a top secret US court order that allows the US National Security Agency (NSA) to collect data on millions of Americans who are customers of the major US phone company, Verizon.
On the same day, the Washington Post also reported that the NSA had direct access to Internet servers, saying their source, a career intelligence officer, was horrified of the capabilities of the systems used by the top US spy agency.
Geneva conference on Syria
Araqchi also expressed Iran’s support for Russia’s efforts to organize a conference in Geneva to help resolve the ongoing crisis in Syria.
On May 7, Russia and the United States agreed in Moscow to convene an international conference on Syria, which will serve as a follow-up to an earlier Geneva meeting held in June 2012.
Araqchi said that the Geneva meeting on Syria will be successful if it is “all-inclusive and involves all countries that can play a constructive role to reach a political approach” in resolving the unrest in Syria.
The unrest in Syria erupted over two years ago and many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security personnel, have been killed in the violence.