With Rouhani, Raisi and others being considered for the Iranian presidency, it is clear that the next president is likely to have a horrible human rights record.
Raisi, for instance, was on the death commission regarding the 1988 massacre of political prisoners. Rouhani has continued executions, despite the violation of various international agreements that outlaw executions based on drug crimes.
Other candidates have been involved in the repression of the Iranian people, including stopping protests and ill-treatment of prisoners. Not one of them is truly a reformer, but approved to carry on the regime’s agenda at any cost to the Iranian people. One of the key areas where the Iranian people are struggling is the economy. Despite deals made to improve the economy, most of the funds have not reached the civilian population. Most are struggling with high unemployment and limited opportunities.
Young people are being educated, but are not able to find work. Smuggling of goods in by the IRGC has had a negative impact on the economy, as markets remain unregulated. Corruption is rampant throughout the banks and government, with large companies not even paying taxes.
Into this picture, the May 2017 elections are seen as a sham election, with no real chance for change. According to Ms. Rajavi, president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), “Neither black turban, nor white turban; down with the clerical regime!”