TEHRAN – Former commerce minister Mohammad Shariatmadari, who has been mentioned as a possible candidate in 2013 presidential election, has said that he will spearhead the campaign for moderation if he is elected as president.
The Society for Defending the Values of the Islamic Revolution has announced that Shariatmadari will be its candidate for the presidential election, which is scheduled to be held on June 14.
Shariatmadari served as commerce minister under former president Mohammad Khatami. He is now a member of Iran’s Strategic Council for Foreign Relations.
“If one day I take the administrative helm of the country, I will be the standard-bearer of moderation,” he said in an interview with the Persian service of the Mehr News Agency published on Tuesday.
He also said that he is opposed to the manifestos of the principlists and reformists, adding that he intends to initiate an alternative political persuasion.
He went on to say that political sloganeering by radical leftists and rightists have harmed national interests for years.
“Iran’s national interests should not be further undermined by extremism, leftism and rightism, conservatism and radicalism, and even principlism and reformism in their current shape in the society,” he said.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Shariatmadari stated that making speeches, issuing statements, and shouting slogans in the style of the foreign-based sworn enemies of the Iranian nation, who have been waiting for the collapse of the Islamic system for years, is not reformism, “but the right term for this approach is subservience to foreigners.”
In addition, he said that true principlism is adherence to Islamic principles and opposition to reactionaryism, regression, foreign intervention, and secularism.
“Principlism does not mean the suppression of all opposing views and thoughts and trying to make for only a particular voice to be heard,” Shariatmadari added.
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