High voter turnout among Iranian expatriates

June 18, 2021 - 23:18

TEHRAN - Iranians living abroad flocked to polling stations set up by the Iranian Foreign Ministry across the globe to take part in elections affecting the daily lives of Iranians both at home and abroad.

Iranian expatriates in 133 countries turned out in large numbers in 234 polling stations to exercise their right to have a say on matters of their homeland.

Voting went ahead mostly in Iranian diplomatic missions, namely embassies and consulates. The polls were opened on Friday morning during local business hours mostly starting at 08:00 am local times.

Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, paid a short visit to a committee in charge of holding the overseas election and offered details about the ballot boxes located abroad.

Underlining that Iran is holding one of its most regular presidential elections abroad, he said, “We have already held talks with 133 countries to hold elections and 234 polling stations around the world have been set aside for this purpose.”

He pointed out that “everything possible has been done by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Islamic Republic of Iran to prepare for their participation.”

“After midnight, we started voting in the easternmost country of this world, and a few hours after Tehran’s midnight, the voting will continue in the westernmost point of the world. We regularly ensure that no constituencies are closed unless all Iranian nationals who have come to the polls can cast their ballots,” Khatibzadeh noted.

On the counting of votes, he stated, “There are approximately two thousand members of the executive boards, and the counting will be done and then sent to Tehran and the announcement will be made by Tehran.”

In Qatar, Iranian nationals cast their ballots at the three polling stations for the 13th presidential election from the early hours of Friday morning. According to the Iranian embassy in Doha, the election process in these branches is underway with the enthusiastic participation of Iranian nationals living there, Fars News reported.

In China, the Iranian election in four constituencies in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong began at 8 a.m. local time and lasted until 6 pm.

Iranians living in South Korea also cast their ballots at the Seoul polling station. Saeed Badamchi Shabestari, the Iranian ambassador to South Korea, announced the vivid participation of Iranians living in the country, and said, “Casting vote to determine destiny shows the strength of the country, the emergence of the will of the people and the manifestation of religious democracy in the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

The 13th presidential election of Iran in Japan ended and the counting of votes began with the end of voting time. Iranians living in the Republic of Azerbaijan also registered high voter turnout.

The Iranian embassy in Paris also announced on its Twitter page that “hours have passed since the beginning of the presidential election in the Paris constituency, and many who still consider participating in the elections as a legal right and a political action influencing the fate of the country and themselves, are present at the polling station with identity documents to empower their homeland.”

The presidential election was also held in eleven British-based polling stations. The election began at 9:00 am local time.

With the coordination of the embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the cooperation of the Romanian Prisons Organization, two Iranian prisoners in Romania participated in the presidential election, in accordance with health and safety procedures.

Iranians living in Spain also cast their ballots in Madrid and Barcelona. Iranians living in Armenia also went to the polls at a polling station located at the embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Yerevan.

Iranians living in Uzbekistan also participated in the elections at the polling station at the Iranian embassy in Tashkent. In the United Arab Emirates, Iranian nationals went to the polls set up by the Iranian diplomatic missions to cast their votes.

Kazem Jalali, Iran's ambassador to Russia, said that despite the efforts of some Western powers to have fewer people participating in the elections, the Iranian people make independent decisions and do not allow foreigners to interfere in their own destiny by participating in the elections.

He added, “In Russia, we have four ballot boxes in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan and Astrakhan. Currently, a large number of dear compatriots living in Moscow are in line and waiting to be able to vote.”

He pointed out that “the participation of Iranians abroad in the elections means that they support the establishment, the country and independence and freedom inside their country. Iranian students and businessmen living in Russia are currently inside Iran due to problems arising from the coronavirus pandemic, but participation is high compared to the current Iranian population.”

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