“The Shadow President” Runs for Iran’s Presidential Election: Who is Said Jalili?

A few days before the opening of the candidacies for electing a new president of Iran, following the death of Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash, the names of potential candidates are starting to emerge.

The Iranian newspaper “Etimad” mentioned the names of the main potential candidates, estimated at 36, but only one of them has officially announced his candidacy so far.

According to the electoral calendar in Iran:

– Candidates will register from May 30 to June 3.

– The campaign period will run from June 12 until the morning of June 27.

– The vote will take place on June 28.

Who is this candidate?

According to Mehr News Agency, the former secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Said Jalili, has announced his candidacy for the fourteenth presidential election.

Mehr reported that Said Jalili met with four deputies from the Majlis of Mashhad last night, and following this meeting, he announced his candidacy for this high office.

But what do we know about Said Jalili?

– Born on September 9, 1965, in Mashhad, northeastern Iran

– Studied at the University of Science and Technology in Tehran

– Holds a PhD in political science from Imam Sadegh University in Tehran

– Participated in the Iran-Iraq War from 1980 to 1988, interrupting his studies to join the fight

– In 1986, he took on the responsibility of commanding the 21st Brigade of the Revolutionary Guards

– He was injured in his right leg during the Karrar V operation

– Fluent in English and Arabic

– Ran for Iranian presidential elections twice, in 2013 and 2021

Prominent Roles:

– Member of the Strategic Council on Foreign Relations under Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei

– Member of the Expediency Discernment Council and representative of the Supreme Leader on the Supreme National Security Council

– Former member of the Revolutionary Guards

– Seen as a staunch loyalist to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei

– Was the chief Iranian negotiator under Ahmadinejad’s government

– One of the leading candidates to succeed Raisi in the upcoming elections

– Stepped aside for Raisi in the previous election

– Has many acquaintances and close associates in Raisi‘s government, including Mohsen Mansouri, who was an assistant to the late President Raisi

Chances of Victory:

– He is supported by the so-called “Front of Steadfastness,” a group within the conservative faction known for its hardline stance, which achieved a major victory in the previous parliamentary elections

– His path to the high office seems paved with the endorsement of the Guardian Council

– The reformist newspaper “Mardom Salari” has described him as the shadow president

Profile of the Next President:

Hussein Shariatmadari, editor-in-chief of the local newspaper Kayhan and representative of Khamenei, stated that the regime has defined the profile of the next president, adding, “It is certain that the Iranian people will not elect someone who had a bad relationship with Raisi.”

Shariatmadari is known for his accurate predictions about the identity of election winners, confirming his close ties with those who manage the political process in Iran, according to the newspaper “Iran International.”

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