Maryam Khazaeli

Hassan Rouhani was inaugurated as the president of Iran on August 4. He was elected in June, after mass mobilisations swept the country in support of his candidacy.

Those who supported him saw his election as the best way to open up space for reforms within the country. However, he is not an outsider to the system.

Rouhani was on Iran's nuclear negotiating team and was the country's top negotiator with the European Union on Iran's nuclear program from 2003 to 2009. He received official endorsement from Iran's supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, on August 3.

Foreign Minister Bob Carr said recently that the rising number of Iranian asylum seekers coming to Australia are “economic migrants”. The overall rate of asylum seekers has increased this year and Iranians have become the largest group of people arriving by boat, making up about one third of the total.

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