Leader hails Iranian nation for 'brilliant job', greets president-elect

Leader hails Iranian nation for 'brilliant job', greets president-elect

Ayatollah Khamenei has thanked all presidential candidates and the Iranian people and state officials in a message.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has hailed the Iranian people for their "warm and passionate" turnout in the Friday presidential election, saying what they did in the face of boycott calls was a "brilliant and unforgettable job".

Millions of people went to polling stations in the runoff election across Iran, propelling veteran parliamentarian Masoud Pezeshkian to the presidency in a tight race against former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili.     

"This great move in confronting the artificial furor of boycotting the elections, which the enemies of the Iranian nation had launched to induce despair and deadlock, is a brilliant and unforgettable work," the Leader said in a message on Saturday.

"All the honorable candidates and all those who worked day and night for weeks for the victory of each of them share in its honor and reward," he added.

The counting of votes commenced immediately after the polls closed following a 16-hour voting process that saw more than 50 percent voter turnout, significantly higher than the June 28 election. 

More than 30 million votes were cast as a large number of people flocked to polling stations in Tehran and other cities and villages across the country in response to the call made by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.

Voting was extended three times on Friday, each time by two hours, after 6:00 PM local time when the polling was supposed to close as per the constitutional requirement of a 10-hour voting period.

The voting lines finally closed at midnight, after which the vote counting began at thousands of polling stations scattered across the country, including more than 6,000 in the capital, Tehran.

The snap presidential election was called after President Ebrahim Raeisi passed away in a helicopter crash with seven other officials in northwestern Iran on May 19.

More than 61 million Iranians were eligible to vote in Friday's election inside the country, in addition to around 10 million Iranians living abroad.

People exhibited tremendous patriotic fervor by coming out in large numbers to cast their ballots across the country on Friday with long queues spotted at polling stations in Tehran and other cities.

Veteran parliamentarian Masoud Pezeshkian has won Iran's runoff presidential vote, the interior ministry says, bringing a conclusion to a tight race which saw voters swell polling stations on Friday.

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