As Iranians count down to Friday's presidential elections, RFE/RL
and Radio Farda
are rolling out singular coverage drawing on direct reporting in and from Iran, before, during and after the polls close.
*** On Friday June 14, Correspondent Golnaz Esfandiari will live-blog the latest news about the election throughout the day on RFE/RL's special "Iranian Election 2013
# Esfandiari speaks to three prominent Middle East experts -- former U.S. diplomats Dennis Ross
and Ryan Crocker
, and former State Department adviser Vali Nasr
-- who weigh in on the effectiveness of sanctions, the end goal of nuclear negotiations, and the possible benefits of taking a more diplomatic approach toward Tehran.
# Iran's top nuclear negotiator, Said Jalili
, has been described by some as the Iranian establishment's candidate of choice in the upcoming presidential election. Esfandiari reports that others say this may not necessarily be accurate.
# There's fluidity among candidates only days before the vote, as Parliament Speaker Gholam Ali Haddad-Adel withdraws his candidacy and Hassan Rohani
seems poised to get the reform vote. But, asks correspondent Charles Recknagel, can he win
# In an exclusive interview
with Esfandiari, U.S. Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman explains why the outcome of the vote -- which the U.S. has said is not free, fair, or credible by international standards -- means an uncertain future for Iran.
# In her "Persian Letters" blog, Esfandiari looks at regime efforts not only to stifle the independent press, but to censor conservative blogs and news websites, too
# In this audio soundslide
, Radio Farda's Kayvan Hosseini discusses the election's overarching themes and how it differs from the 2009 polls.
# Correspondent Frud Bezhan's incisive primer
offers a rundown on the main players and issues, and web editor Denise Ajiri has a website dedicated to Iranian elections
past and present.
# Watch events on the ground unfold with streaming tidbits and sound bites
from the campaign trail in cities all over the Iran.
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