Iran’s reformist candidate criticizes current economic situation formed by Principilists
Azerbaijan, Baku, June 7 /Trend D. Khatinoglu/
Iran's reformist candidate for the presidential elections Mohammad Reza Aref defended the economic situation during former reformist president Mohammad Khatami's term, saying that during his presidency (1997 to 2005), Iran's economy boosted due to a good foreign policy and improving the relations with the international community.
During a live TV debate with 7 other candidates, he criticized the situation during President Ahmadinejad's presidency, underlining that performance of the administrations during the past eight years showed that a certain political (Principilists) front cannot meet the country's needs alone.
"We should promote meritocracy," he said. "The reformist administration materialized a 6-percent economic growth and created 700,000 jobs annually and reduced the inflation rate from 17.3 percent to about 10 percent."
Aref said that this was while the administration earned just $173 billion in oil revenues, compared to $630 billion which was earned during President Ahmadinejad's administration.
"We should not follow the method of trial and error in the fourth decade of the Islamic Revolution," he said. "People should choose the next president based on his abilities."
Earlier today, Iranian presidential candidates have started the third debates on live television in Iran, IRIB News reported.
Previously, the debates were held on economic and cultural issues. The third debates are about domestic and foreign policy issues, and also nuclear program.
Eight people are competing for the presidential post in Iran - Former top nuclear negotiator Hassan Rouhani, Tehran Mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf, secretary of Iran Expediency Council Mohsen Rezaei, lawmaker Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel, Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council Saeed Jalili, former Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Velayati, former First Vice President Mohammad Reza Aref, and former Telecommunications Minister Mohammad Gharazi.