Hard-line Iranian candidate says US should fear Iran
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Hard-line Iranian candidate says US should fear Iran

‘The solution is not backing down. We must force them to retreat,’ urges Ebrahim Raisi, considered close to regime’s supreme leader Khamenei

An Iranian holds up a poster of Iranian cleric Ebrahim Raisi, a conservative presidential candidate in the upcoming presidential election, at a campaign rally in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, April 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
An Iranian holds up a poster of Iranian cleric Ebrahim Raisi, a conservative presidential candidate in the upcoming presidential election, at a campaign rally in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, April 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

TEHRAN, Iran — A hard-line candidate in Iran’s upcoming presidential election says the United States should be made to fear Iran so that it will back off on sanctions and threats.

Ebrahim Raisi told a state TV talk show Wednesday that “today Americans are afraid of the word ‘Iran,'” saying: “This is the solution. The solution is not backing down. We must force them to retreat.”

Raisi is challenging the incumbent, Hassan Rouhani, a moderate who has tried to improve relations with the West and whose government reached a key nuclear agreement with world powers in 2015.

More conservative elements of the regime criticized the deal, saying Rouhani gave too much away.

Rouhani is widely seen as the front-runner in next month’s election, but Raisi is close to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

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