Mahmoud Ahmadinejad rival is Iran's new president
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad sees his rival Hasan Rowhani elected as president of Iran. Is the political career of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad over?
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Rowhani later graduated from Tehran University with a law degree in 1972. He then went abroad to Glasgow Caledonian University for a master's degree in legal affairs, according to his campaign biography.Skip to next paragraph
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While outside Iran, the stirrings of the Islamic Revolution were growing stronger. Rowhani returned to Iran and stepped up his denunciations of the shah, but fled the country to avoid arrest. He then joined up with Khomeini, who was in self-exile in France, and the rest of his inner circle, including Rafsanjani.
After the revolution, Rowhani rose quickly with various roles, including reorganizing the military, serving in the new parliament and overseeing the state broadcaster, which became a valued mouthpiece for Khomeini.
He strengthened his ties to Rafsanjani during the 1980-88 war with Iraq and, later, as Rafsanjani's top national security adviser during his 1989-97 terms. Rowhani continued the role with reformist President Mohammad Khatami, who also appointed Rowhani as the country's first nuclear envoy.
Rowhani took over the nuclear portfolio in 2003, a year after Iran's 20-year-old nuclear program was revealed. Iran later temporarily suspended all uranium enrichment-related activities to avoid possible sanctions from the U.N. Security Council.
Ahmadinejad strongly opposed any such concessions and deal-making. He also had carry-over friction with Rowhani, who backed his mentor Rafsanjani against Ahmadinejad in the 2005 race.
Rowhani resigned as nuclear negotiator and head of the Supreme National Security Council after a few testy postelection meetings with Ahmadinejad.
In his campaign stops, Rowhani had been careful not to directly confront authorities over crackdowns since Ahmadinejad's disputed 2009 election. But Rowhani was seen as clearly siding with Ahmadinejad's reform-minded opponent four years ago, Green Movement leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, who was placed under house arrest in early 2011 along with fellow opposition candidate Mahdi Karroubi.
Taking a page from Mousavi's color-branded campaign, Rowhani adopted purple for his run for the presidency. It also brought some backlash, including several supporters arrested at a rally that brought cries from the crowd for the release of Mousavi and Karroubi.
At Rowhani's final campaign event earlier this week, chants rang out: "Love live reforms."
Is Amadinejad's career over? Probably not.
"He has to retire temporarily," New York City-based Iranian-American journalist Hooman Majd told NBCNews.com. "[But] he is eligible to run again in four years. I doubt very much knowing his personality that he is willing to give up on politics altogether. He has tasted power; he likes power. He believes very strongly that he is right about many things, as crazy as it may sound. He's not someone who has ever admitted a mistake. He always thinks he is right."
Murphy reported from Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.