TEHRAN, Iran (CNN) -- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, whose re-election last month led to massive protests, on Tuesday called the balloting "the most free election anywhere in the world."
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was re-elected last month, setting off days of protests.
"It was a great event," he said in a nationally televised address.
The election, which opponents charge was rigged, was followed by street demonstrations and civil unrest that led to the deaths of at least 20 protesters and the arrest of more than 1,000, according to Iranian state-run media.
The numbers of casualties and arrests could not be independently verified by CNN because the Iranian government banned coverage by international journalists.
The president, who said voter turnout was 85 percent, said opponents "did not provide even one piece of document regarding irregularities or vote fraud."
Without specifically mentioning the post-election violence, Ahmadinejad said criticism of government "is the key to the success of a nation."
Everyone has criticisms, he said. "I have my own."
But he accused the "arrogant powers" and "enemies" of Iran of interfering in his country's affairs, including the post-election situation. Some Iranians collaborated with enemies, the president said.
Ahmadinejad also said Tuesday he believes the government should be "substantially" reorganized. Although he didn't elaborate, he said the areas of employment, housing, development and civil rights were high on the agenda.
"[We] need to create newer capacities and prepare ourselves for this new period," he said, apparently referring to his upcoming second term in office.
"With this election, we have entered a new era ... in domestic spheres and on an international level," he added. He called it "an era of solidarity."
"The government is at the service of the entire people," Ahmadinejad said. "Things will be done in a better way, more effective way, so we can reach higher aspirations."
He said experts have been invited to help the government achieve progress.