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Iran election: Israel voices 'grave concern' over Ebrahim Raisi Iran election: Israel PM warns world of Ebrahim Raisi
(about 5 hours later)
Iran election: Wariness and welcome for Ebrahim RaisiIran election: Wariness and welcome for Ebrahim Raisi
Israel has said the international community should have grave concerns about the election of Iran's new president-elect, Ebrahim Raisi. Israel's Prime Minister has said the international community should "wake up" to the election of Iran's next president, Ebrahim Raisi.
A spokesman for Israel's foreign ministry, Lior Haiat, said Mr Raisi is Iran's most extremist president yet. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said Iran's "regime of brutal hangmen" wants nuclear weapons - something Iran has repeatedly denied.
He also warned the new leader will increase Iran's nuclear activities. Ebrahim Raisi was declared the winner of Iran's presidential election on Saturday.
Ebrahim Raisi was declared the winner of Iran's presidential election on Saturday, in a race that was widely seen as being designed to favour him. He is is Iran's top judge and holds ultra-conservative views.
Mr Raisi, who will be inaugurated in August, is Iran's top judge and holds ultra-conservative views. He is under US sanctions and has been linked to past executions of political prisoners.
In a statement following his victory, he promised to strengthen public trust in the government, and be a leader for the entire nation.In a statement following his victory, he promised to strengthen public trust in the government, and be a leader for the entire nation.
"I will form a hard-working, revolutionary and anti-corruption government," state media quoted him as saying."I will form a hard-working, revolutionary and anti-corruption government," state media quoted him as saying.
The election race was widely seen as being designed to favour Mr Raisi. The president-elect - who will be inaugurated in August - is under US sanctions and has been linked to past executions of political prisoners.
Who is Ebrahim Raisi, Iran's next president?Who is Ebrahim Raisi, Iran's next president?
Iran and Israel's shadow war takes a dangerous turnIran and Israel's shadow war takes a dangerous turn
However in a critical Twitter thread, Israel's Lior Haiat said he is "an extremist figure, committed to Iran's rapidly advancing military nuclear program". In an Israeli cabinet meeting on Sunday, Mr Bennett told colleagues this was "the last chance for world powers to wake up... and understand who they are doing business with".
"A regime of brutal hangmen must never be allowed to have weapons of mass destruction."
Iran and Israel have been in a long-running "shadow war", which has resulted in both countries taking part in tit-for-tat actions, but so far avoiding all-out conflict. Recently, however, the hostilities between the two have escalated again.Iran and Israel have been in a long-running "shadow war", which has resulted in both countries taking part in tit-for-tat actions, but so far avoiding all-out conflict. Recently, however, the hostilities between the two have escalated again.
The situation is complex, but one big source of tension is Iran's nuclear activities.The situation is complex, but one big source of tension is Iran's nuclear activities.
Iran blames Israel for the murder of its top nuclear scientist last year and an attack on one of its uranium enrichment plants in April.Iran blames Israel for the murder of its top nuclear scientist last year and an attack on one of its uranium enrichment plants in April.
Meanwhile, Israel does not believe that Iran's nuclear programme is purely peaceful, and is convinced it is working towards building a nuclear weapon. Israel does not believe that Iran's nuclear programme is purely peaceful, and is convinced it is working towards building a nuclear weapon.
The 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which saw harsh penalties lifted on Iran as long as it stopped some nuclear work, collapsed when former US President Donald Trump abandoned the deal in 2018, and re-imposed the crippling economic sanctions. The Biden administration is now trying to work out a way to re-enter the deal. Prime Minister Bennett made the comments at a cabinet meeting on Sunday
The 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which saw harsh penalties on Iran lifted as long as it stopped some nuclear work, collapsed when former US President Donald Trump abandoned the deal in 2018, and re-imposed the crippling economic sanctions. The Biden administration is now trying to work out a way to re-enter the deal.
In response to the sanctions being tightened, Iran stepped up its nuclear activities, and is currently enriching uranium at its highest levels ever - although still short of what is needed to make nuclear-grade weapons.In response to the sanctions being tightened, Iran stepped up its nuclear activities, and is currently enriching uranium at its highest levels ever - although still short of what is needed to make nuclear-grade weapons.
4/4 More than ever, Iran’s nuclear program must be halted immediately, rolled back entirely and stopped indefinitely. Iran’s ballistic missile program must be dismantled and its global terror campaign vigorously countered by a broad international coalition. Iran nuclear crisis in 300 words
Commenting on the election result, the US said it regretted Iranians were "denied their right to choose their own leaders in a free and fair electoral process".Commenting on the election result, the US said it regretted Iranians were "denied their right to choose their own leaders in a free and fair electoral process".
Voter turnout was at a record low for this election, with less than 50% of registered voters going to the polls, compared to more than 70% in 2017. Many people shunned the election, believing that it had been engineered in favour of Mr Raisi, who is a staunch ally of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Voter turnout was at a record low for this election, with less than 50% of registered voters going to the polls, compared to more than 70% in 2017. Many people shunned the vote, believing that it had been engineered in favour of Mr Raisi, who is a staunch ally of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Ayatollah Khamenei has repeatedly called for the elimination of the state of Israel. In 2018, he described the country as a "cancerous tumour" that had to be removed from the region.Ayatollah Khamenei has repeatedly called for the elimination of the state of Israel. In 2018, he described the country as a "cancerous tumour" that had to be removed from the region.
Nuclear-deal talks Nuclear deal talks
Mr Raisi's win has come on the same weekend as negotiations to try and save the Iran nuclear deal continue in Vienna. Mr Raisi's win has come on the same weekend as negotiations to try and revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal continue in Vienna.
Iran nuclear crisis in 300 words
The EU has said another formal meeting will take place on Sunday between Iran and the six world powers involved in the deal. This is the sixth round of indirect talks between the US and Iran, and this week officials said the parties remain divided on some key issues, Reuters reported.The EU has said another formal meeting will take place on Sunday between Iran and the six world powers involved in the deal. This is the sixth round of indirect talks between the US and Iran, and this week officials said the parties remain divided on some key issues, Reuters reported.
A spokesman for the US State Department said the indirect talks would still continue after Mr Raisi takes power.A spokesman for the US State Department said the indirect talks would still continue after Mr Raisi takes power.
'The butcher of Tehran'
In his Twitter thread, Lior Haiat called Mr Raisi the "butcher of Tehran", in reference to the mass execution of thousands of political prisoners in 1988.
Mr Raisi was one of four judges, who became known as the "death committee", which allegedly sentenced about 5,000 men and women to death, Amnesty International says. In his tweets, however, Mr Haiat said more than 30,000 people were killed, which is a number also referenced by Iranian human rights groups.
What about the reaction from elsewhere?What about the reaction from elsewhere?
Russia's Vladimir Putin was quick to congratulate Ebrahim Raisi, highlighting the "traditionally friendly and good-neighbourly" relationship between the two countries.Russia's Vladimir Putin was quick to congratulate Ebrahim Raisi, highlighting the "traditionally friendly and good-neighbourly" relationship between the two countries.
The leaders of Syria, Iraq, Turkey and the UAE sent similar messages of support and congratulations. The leaders of Syria, Iraq, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates sent similar messages of support and congratulations.
A spokesperson for Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that runs Gaza, wished Iran "progress and prosperity".A spokesperson for Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that runs Gaza, wished Iran "progress and prosperity".
However, human rights groups have said Mr Raisi should be investigated for atrocities.However, human rights groups have said Mr Raisi should be investigated for atrocities.
"As head of Iran's repressive judiciary, Raisi oversaw some of the most heinous crimes in Iran's recent history, which deserve investigation and accountability rather than election to high office," Michael Page from Human Rights Watch said."As head of Iran's repressive judiciary, Raisi oversaw some of the most heinous crimes in Iran's recent history, which deserve investigation and accountability rather than election to high office," Michael Page from Human Rights Watch said.