KODAR calls for a boycott of upcoming elections in Iran

Ario Berzen, board member of the East Kurdistan liberation movement KODAR, calls for a boycott of the presidential elections in Iran on June 18.

Speaking to ANF, the Democratic and Free Society of East Kurdistan (KODAR) Executive Board member Ario Berzen called for a boycott of the upcoming presidential elections in Iran. For the people there is nothing to win in the elections on June 18, said the KODAR representative and pointed to the low participation in the parliamentary elections last year.

The country is in a very critical phase politically, economically and diplomatically, said Ario Berzen and continued: "In short, the existing system has lost all legitimacy. The government wants to use the elections to prove its support among the population, but this does not correspond to the truth. Under the current conditions, going to the ballot box is not even possible. Iran is rotten at home and in a difficult position in the international arena. The upcoming elections are just a repeat of the previous elections. The Islamic Republic of Iran has lost all legitimacy; in such a time, even elections are not trusted. The state cannot lead the people to the ballot box with fraud one more time. The people now know this system well and are looking for alternatives."

The existing system does not provide answers to people's demands, Berzen said: "Iran has no solution for the Kurds, the Lors and the Baluch. There is no project to prevent the killing of kolbars, feminicides and environmental pollution. There is no project for coexistence of peoples. All efforts are fixed on coming to power and getting a post."

The Guardian Council, which consists of twelve jurists, including six experts on Islamic law, decides on the admission of candidates. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who brutally crushed the opposition in his second term and isolated the country with constant provocations against the West, no longer appeared to be acceptable to the Guardian Council in 2017. This year, he is running again. Only six candidates were admitted in 2017, and a woman has never been among them. The names of the approved presidential candidates are to be published at the end of May.

Remarking that real representatives of the people are left no room in the presidential elections anyway, Berzen continued: "In our opinion, these are not elections, but fraud and deceit. One cannot speak of elections when the population is forced to go to the polls. The mere casting of votes does not mean that an election has taken place. Elections must be held in a democratic atmosphere."

Appealing to the people, the KODAR representative said: "People should boycott the elections. Boycotting the elections is a historical duty, because Iran is an occupying state that persecutes our people. Beyond just boycotting, people should organize and take to the streets. They must take a stand. Every vote cast returns as a bullet fired at kolbars and as environmental pollution, it strengthens the occupation and accelerates executions."