Iran Elections 2022: What to Know Before Casting Your Vote

As Iran holds its first elections since the mass protests of 2022, there is a cloud of uncertainty hanging over the country. The voting, which is taking place to elect members of parliament and the Assembly of Experts, is seen as a crucial test of legitimacy for Iran’s leadership. However, a low turnout is expected as voter apathy remains high following a period of unrest triggered by the death of a young woman detained for wearing an “improper” hijab.

With more than 61.2 million people eligible to vote, the stakes are high. Iran’s leadership, including Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has been calling on citizens to cast their ballots. However, many Iranians are wary of participating in the elections due to the repressive political atmosphere that has emerged after the protests.

The death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in custody sparked the mass protests that rocked Iran in 2022. The government’s harsh crackdown on demonstrators left hundreds dead and thousands injured, with many facing arrest and even the death penalty. This has led to widespread discontent among the public, with reformist groups labeling the elections as “meaningless and non-competitive”.

Despite efforts by state media to boost enthusiasm for the elections, projections indicate a low turnout, with only 41% expected to participate in the parliamentary elections. The lack of competitive candidates, especially from the reformist camp, has further dampened the hopes for a fair and transparent electoral process.

The international community, including the US, has raised concerns about the lack of democracy and transparency in Iran’s political system. Many Iranians, both inside and outside the country, have little faith in the electoral process, believing it to be undemocratic and non-transparent.

As polls open and Iranians have the opportunity to have their voices heard, the world watches to see the outcome of these critical elections. Will the citizens of Iran seize the chance to shape their future, or will voter apathy prevail, casting a shadow of doubt over the legitimacy of the results? Only time will tell how this historic moment in Iran’s political landscape will unfold.