Bookmark and Share

Ahmadinejad attacks Hashemi, Khatami during debate with Mousavi


Source: Press TV

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (L) and Mir-Hossein Mousavi (R) - watch the full debate on youtube

Incumbent Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has focused his attacks on former presidents Mohammad Khatami and Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.

During a televised debate with his rival Mir Hossein Mousavi, President Ahmadinejad accused the two Iranian figures of masterminding a plot to push him out of power.

He underlined what he believed were examples of mismanagement and corruption during the two president's administrations.

Mousavi in response attacked Ahmadinejad for accusing the people who did not have a representative in the debate, saying the tactic was adopted by the incumbent President because Ahmadinejad had not found anything against him.

Ahmadinejad supporters holding poster accusing Hashemi Rafsanjani acting against Ahmadinejad

Mousavi also slammed Ahmadinejad for ignoring the legal principle of the presumption of innocence through accusing those who were not convicted in a court.

Elsewhere, he touched on the issue of Ali Kordan, the former interior minister who was impeached by the Parliament (Majlis) over his fake academic degree and said Ahmadinejad still supported him.

Ahmadinejad said many officials under Rafsanjani and Khatami acquired fake academic degrees and his support had nothing to do with Kordan's degree.

He also accused Zahra Rahnavard, Mousavi's wife of studying in universities while she was a government employee to receive two masters degrees and obtaining her doctorate without an entrance exam.

Mousavi, however, said Rahnavard had studied for ten years to receive a doctorate and hit back at Ahmadinejad for adopting "an immoral strategy" by his move.

Iran's presidential election will be held on June 12. President Ahmadinejad, Mousavi, former parliament speaker Mahdi Karoudi and Secretary of Iran's Expediency Council Mohsen Rezaei are the candidates.

Ahmadinejad: Rafsanjani promised my ouster to King

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has accused the former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi-Rafsanjani of wishing the collapse of his government.

Ahmadinejad launched heavy attacks against Rafsanjani and Mohammad Khatami, Iran's former president.

"They tried to stand against the Iranian nation but people defeated them. During these four years [Ahmadinejad's term in office] they tried to pretend that the government is unsuccessful, but with God's and people's help we got to this point," Ahmadinejad said.

He claimed that after the previous presidential elections, his rival [hinting at Rafsanjani] was supported from "inside and outside" the country.

"In the early days of my government, Mr. Rafsanjani sent a message to a king of a Persian Gulf state and told him that don't worry, this government will collapse within six months," he added.

"Such remarks clearly show that there have been massive plots underway against this government," Ahmadinejad said.

Iran's incumbent president also accused the three other presidential hopefuls--Mohsen Rezaei, Mehdi Karroubi, and Mousavi-- of trying to downplay his government's achievements.

Karbaschi rebukes Ahmadinejad, invites him to debate

Former Tehran mayor Gholam-Hossein Karbaschi is the campaign manager for Iranian presidential candidate Mehdi Karroubi (right).

The Karroubi camp's number one has invited President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to a debate after the incumbent took a swipe at the former Tehran mayor.

Gholam-Hossein Karbaschi, a controversial Iranian political figure and the former Tehran mayor, lashed out at the president for 'attacking his character' and lunching an dishonest campaign ahead of the June 12 election.

"I challenge him to a TV debate so that I can clarify the details of my trial for him and he can let the people know about the funds that went missing from government and municipality accounts," said Karbaschi, the Reformist Etemad-e-Melli daily reported Wednesday.

Karbaschi, a key supporter of former President Mohammad Khatami in his first election campaign, served a two-year sentence for corruption and misuse of funds after being convicted in a court, which the Reformists say was a politically motivated trial.

He is now the top aide to Mehdi Karroubi, a two-time parliament speaker who is running against Ahmadinejad in the polls.

On Tuesday, Ahmadinejad strongly criticized Karbaschi.

"One who once confessed he had taken more than 250 million tomans ($257,000) of the money which belonged to the Iranian nation ... one who once acted against the interests of the nation... now sheds tears for the country's poor," said the president.

Ahmadinejad, who has also served as a Tehran mayor, was referring to a Karroubi ad in which Karbaschi criticized the government's failure to combat poverty.

In his Wednesday response, Karbaschi questioned how Ahmadinejad could comment on his trial and get the timeline mixed up. He also accused Ahmadinejad of trying to hide his own failures by throwing around blame.

Karbaschi also asked the president to explain what had happed to the "300 billion tomans (over $300 million) that went missing during his days as Tehran mayor".

He also asked Ahmadinejad to explain about a February National Audit Office report that said more than one billion dollars of surplus oil revenues had not been returned to the treasury, based on the 2006-2007 budget.

The Ahmadinejad administration says that no revenues have been displaced, blaming the Audit Office for what it calls a 'miscalculation'.

© Copyright 2009 (All Rights Reserved)