Tehran: The Iranian hard-line groups appear to have become operational during the impending presidential elections. The former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who had threatened to wipe off the US and Israel from the world-map, has re-entered the Presidential race. ‘Imam Ebrahim Raisi’, a leader who has been endorsed by Iranian President Rouhani’s bitter opponent and Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Khomeini, announced his candidacy as well.
President Rouhani is said to have a huge popularity in Iran. However, in the wake of the aggressive stance taken by the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia against Iran, the chances of an extremist leader winning the elections has increased. This would be a major challenge for President Rouhani. To add to this, Iran’s supreme political and religious authority, Ayatollah Khamenei also has begun criticizing President Rouhani. Amidst such circumstances, Rouhani’s chances at winning have been debated to have become more difficult.
The outcome of the Iranian presidential elections would have an effect on the Persian Gulf as well as the Middle Eastern region. Hence, Israel and the Gulf nations are keeping a close watch on the developments in Iran.