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Iranians Flock to the Polls to Elect a New President

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Credit: Reuters

Men stand in line to vote during the Iranian presidential election at a mosque in Qom, 120 km (74.6 miles) south of Tehran June 14, 2013. Millions of Iranians voted to choose a new president on Friday, urged by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to turn out in force to discredit suggestions by arch foe the United States that the election would be unfair. REUTERS/Fars News/Mohammad Akhlagi (IRAN - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS - RTX10N8V

Iranians voted Friday in a presidential election.

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(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the audio to hear it.)

The vote is widely seen as rigged in favor of the government's preferred candidates.

All six candidates in the election are conservatives approved by Iran's religious authorities.

Earlier, the Supreme Leader himself, Ayatollah Khamenei, was at the polls.

And he had a very firm response to Western skepticism. "To hell with you if you don't believe in our election," he was heard saying.

Tehran born journalist Nazila Fathi reported for The New York Times from Iran until she was forced out of the country in 2009.

She's now at Harvard's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.

She said there were long lines outside the polling stations, with many people saying they'd vote for the more moderate of the conservative candidates.

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