Iranian leader tipped to win

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The Independent Online
Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani is widely tipped to be re-elected President of Iran today. The other three candidates enjoy none of the stature or experience of this pragmatic statesman. The test, however, will be the number of votes cast against him, writes Charles Richards.

While Mr Rafsanajani would like endorsement by the electorate, the votes cast against him will give some indication of popular support for the management of Iran's dire economy and his wish to haul Iran out of its diplomatic isolation. Some commentators suggest a low turn-out will reduce his authority; others say Mr Rafsanjani's authority is assured, whatever his vote.