Sunday, June 26, 2005

Rumsfeld dismisses "mock" Iranian elections

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld dismissed as illegitimate the landslide presidential election victory in Iran by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Tehran's hard-line mayor.

"There were over 1,000 candidates that were disqualified -- that weren't even allowed to run," Rumsfeld told the Fox News Sunday television program.

"So the fact that they had a mock election and elected a hardliner ought not come to any surprise to anybody, because all the other people were told they couldn't run -- it's against the law.

Rumsfeld predicted that Iranians eventually will become disenchanted by Ahmadinejad.

"I don't know much about this fellow. He's young. I've read backgrounds on him. But he is no friend of democracy. He's no friend of freedom," Rumsfeld said.

"He is a person who is very much supportive of the current ayatollahs, who are telling the people of that country how to live their lives. And my guess is over time, the young people and the women will find him, as well as his masters, unacceptable."

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