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E.U. Congratulates Iran Regime’s New President

The Islamic Republic's new President Masoud Pezeshkian. AP
The Islamic Republic’s new President Masoud Pezeshkian. AP

The European Union congratulated the Islamic Republic’s new president amid criticism from dissidents that such an acknowledgement may serve to legitimize the repressive theocracy.

The E.U. foreign affairs spokesperson, Nabila Massrali, welcomed the victory of 'reformist’ candidate Masoud Pezeshkian in a statement on X while confirming that her political organization is "ready to engage with the new government in line with E.U. policy."

Pezeshkian, a heart surgeon, lawmaker, and former health minister, defeated former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili in a runoff election on Friday. Voter turnout was reported to be less than 50 percent.

Massrali’s sentiments came shortly after the son of the last Shah of Iran, exiled Prince Reza Pahlavi, warned Western governments to refrain from commenting on the balloting, as such efforts could strengthen the dictatorship in Tehran.

Pahlavi previously referred to the campaigns of both individuals as “fraudulent” and an “election circus,” while describing Pezeshkian as a “lackey” that does not have the support of the Iranian people.

Both candidates, congruent with the regime’s constitution, were pre-approved by a council of clerics appointed by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to replace the recently deceased Ebrahim Raisi.

Related Story: Khamenei Urges Voter Participation After Record Low Turnout

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