Ahmendinejad’s re-election has been the talk of the middle-east, but reaction to the result has been mixed.
The big margin of victory, despite a massive turnout and predictions of a close race, drew a diplomatic response from the European Union’s Foreign Policy chief Javier Solana, who was on a trip to Lebanon. He said: “The participation was very high and we will respect what the Iranian people decide with their vote.” Ahmedinejad has in the past called for Israel to be wiped off the map, and the Israeli foreign ministry said his re-election expresses a growing Iranian threat. On the streets, ordinary Israelis expressed their dislike. One woman said: “Whether it’s Ahmedinejad or his competitor, regarding the nuclear weapons and all the bad things it’ll be the same. I don’t think he’s normal.” In Gaza, which is run by the Islamist Hamas Palestinian faction, there was a more enthusiastic response. A Hamas spokesman said he hoped Iran would continue to support what he called the fair Palestinian cause.