Middle East

Iran President Ahmadinejad's car leapt on by woman

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Media captionBodyguards initially tried to stop the woman climbing up onto the car's bonnet

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has always made a point of his approachability.

He once gave out the private contact details of his presidential office (which caused lines to jam almost immediately). He appears to enjoy the chaos of lively crowds.

But even he may have been surprised by one woman's determination to meet him.

A video posted online shows a crowd surrounding Mr Ahmadinejad's open-topped car on recent tour of the southern city of Bandar Abbas.

"I'm hungry, I'm hungry," shouts one man, as he reaches for the president's hand. Others try to give him envelopes - often these contain appeals for help.

The crowd manages to stop the motorcade. One woman standing in front of the president's car decides to take her chance.

"Wait a second, this is the moment," one woman shouts to the president's bodyguards - who appear to be twice her size.

Demonstration of frustration?

She clambers onto the bonnet of the car, shakes off one bulky officer who makes a half-hearted attempt to grab her ankle, and goes straight up to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the open roof-top.

She gestures to the president with tremendous animation - the video doesn't pick up whether she's criticising him or asking for his help. Mr Ahmadinejad listens with calm. And the woman then climbs back down from the car.

Some believe that her actions demonstrate that Iranians are increasingly willing to demonstrate their frustration with Mr Ahmadinejad's administration.

But others may see it differently - what better way for President Ahmadinejad to show that he engages with voters than by holding spontaneous constituency meetings on the roof of his car?

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