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Iran’s parliamentary election ends with historic low turnout

Iran’s parliamentary election end with historic low turnout
posted onMarch 3, 2024

Turnout for Iran’s parliamentary election appears to have hit a historic low of around 41%, according to state media reports on Saturday. However, Iranians believe the participation rate is even lower as polling stations were empty throughout the country on Friday.

Iran’s turnout fell to 42.5% in 2020 parliamentary elections from about 62% in 2016.

The 2024 election followed anti-regime protests in 2022-23 that spiraled into some of Iran’s worst political turmoil since the 1979 Islamic revolution and coincided with growing frustration over the sanctions-hit country’s economic troubles. 

Under the law, the parliament has oversight over the executive branch, votes on treaties and handles other issues. In practice, absolute power in Iran rests with its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

The Iranian regime had placed great store in boosting turnout above the 2020 figure, a historic low, since it believes a strong show of political engagement would ward off claims it has run out of legitimacy, or is unable to deliver on the basic requirements of the Iranian people for economic progress and personal freedom.