Moves under way to end Iran crisis

SERIOUS attempts are in the offing to reach a solution that satisfies all parties concerned in the Iranian political crisis. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei has requested the Guardian Council, an un-elected constitutional watchdog, to reconsider the cases of thousands candidates barred by the council from running in the forthcoming elections. Those of candidates include tens of the present MPs.

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Published: Fri 16 Jan 2004, 12:46 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 1:19 AM

If this request is linked to President Mohammed Khatami's call to reformists in parliament opposed to the decision of the council to end their sit-in protest and leave the matter to the government, it is clear that Khatami could not have dispensed with the pressure of those who carried out the sit-in on the conservatives, who appear to the outside world as if they are against democracy. Moreover, they do not want the government to score more successes. Khatami's government has succeeded in temporarily ending the crisis with Washington regarding its nuclear facilities. Other successes include its rapprochement with Egypt, with a date for restoring the ruptured diplomatic ties drawing near.

By restoring diplomatic relations with Cairo, Teheran will pave the road to build better relations with Arab countries, as it (Iran) needs their regional support in facing the pressure mounted by the US and Israel. The massive earthquake which flattened the historic city of Bam claiming thousands of lives led to a large-scale relief campaign around the world, showing sympathy with Teheran. This showed the diplomatic success of Khatami's government. The question, however, is what kind of solution will satisfy all parties concerned. It is difficult to predict, because the topic put forth by the Guardian Council, which is "Wilayat - El -Faqih", the guardianship of the supreme jurist, is one of the very sensitive issues in the Shia school of thought, on which the conservatives base their political role in leading the country.

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