Chatham House and St Andrews’ Institute of Iranian Studies have published a preliminary analysis of the numbers.
The Iran boffins have been comparing figures from the recent elections with results in 2005 and with statistics from Iran’s 2006 census. Here is a summary of their number-crunching:
- In two conservative provinces a turnout of more than 100% was recorded.
- Previously stark variations in regional participation have almost disappeared.
- In a third of all provinces the official results would require that Ahmadinejad took not only all conservative voters, and all former centrist voters, and all new voters, but also up to 44% of former reformist voters.
- In 2005, as in 2001 and 1997, conservative candidates and Ahmadinejad in particular were unpopular in rural areas. It is a myth that Iranian rural voters are staunchly conservative and pro-Ahmadinejad. His enormously high support in rural provinces this year defies past results.
It all looks extremely suspect.