Sunday, January 09, 2005

Iran welcomes Palestinian election - (United Press International)

Iran welcomes Palestinian election - (United Press International): "Iran welcomes Palestinian election

Tehran, Iran, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- Iran Sunday welcomed the Palestinian presidential election, saying it hoped the balloting was a step toward self-determination.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi said he also hopes the general elections in neighboring Iraq would be "free, honest and comprehensive, leading to the formation of a popular government that would end the occupation as soon as possible and restore stability and calm."

Iran hopes Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip went to polling stations to choose a new president to replace Yasser Arafat, who died in November.

Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman and Fatah candidate Mahmoud Abbas was expected to win the race, in which six other candidates are competing."


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