Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, infamous for denying the holocaust and saying, ‘Israel should be wiped off the map’, is running for a third term as the President of Iran, reports the Associated Press.
Ahmadinejad shocked Iranians and the world on Wednesday when he formally filed his paperwork to run in the Iranian presidential election this May, ignoring a request from Supreme Leader Khamenei that he stay out of the race.
“His advice does not prevent me from running,” he said. “There is extensive pressure on me from dear people of different walks of life as their small servant to come to the election.”
Ahmadinejad had previously served as Iranian President from 2005 to 2013, and is now eligible to run again after a minimum of four years as a private citizen.
His hardline approach and conservative credentials will shake up the race, which was expected to be won by moderate President Rouhani, the Iranian leader that brokered the Iranian nuclear program and thawed tensions with the Obama administration.
Ahmadinejad’s firebrand approach roiled the world nearly a decade ago, when he said, “The pretext (Holocaust) for the creation of the Zionist regime (Israel) is false … It is a lie based on an unprovable and mythical claim.”
“Israel will not last long,” he added. “Its life has come to an end.”
Many in the country see Ahmadinejad as a strong leader that will be able to stand toe-to-toe with President Trump and other western allies, particularly in regards to Iran’s nuclear ambitions and the ongoing conflict in Syria. source
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