Monday, June 20, 2005

Broken Iranian liberals torn on backing Rafsanjani

Dazed young reformists tried on Saturday to come to terms with their battering in Iran's presidential poll, sickened by an unappetising choice between two conservatives in a run-off next week.

Dispirited young liberals, many of them close to tears, milled around the campaign headquarters of presidential hopeful Mostafa Moin, whose crushing defeat extinguished hopes of a reformist successor to Mohammad Khatami.

Moin came fifth out of seven candidates. The two leading vote winners, powerful cleric Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Tehran's conservative mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will compete for the presidency in a run-off on Friday.

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