Iran approves six candidates for June 28 presidential vote

Iran on Sunday announced the six candidates, mostly conservatives, approved for the June 28 election to replace president Ebrahim Raisi, who was killed in a helicopter crash.

The candidates announced by the interior ministry were selected from 80 registered hopefuls by the Guardian Council, which oversees elections in the Islamic republic.

Among those approved are the conservative speaker of parliament Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf and the ultraconservative former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, who is known for his inflexible negotiating stance.

Just one reformist candidate, Massoud Pezeshkian, who is a lawmaker representing Tabriz in Iran's parliament, has been approved.

Pezeshkian, 69, has been outspoken against the government's lack of transparency during nationwide protests which were triggered by the September 2022 death in police custody of Mahsa Amini.

The conservative former interior minister Mostafa Pourmohammadi has also been authorised to run.

Others on the list include conservative Tehran mayor Alireza Zakani and incumbent vice president Amirhossein Ghazizadeh-Hashemi, the ultraconservative head of the Martyrs' Foundation.

In a Sunday post on social media site X, Zakani said he would "compete until the end to continue the path of" Raisi.

According to Iran's electoral law, campaigning should officially start from Sunday until 24 hours before the elections.

 Ahmadinejad disqualified 

Former hardline president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was previously disqualified from entering the presidential races in 2017 and 2021, was again excluded from the list.

Others including moderate ex-parliament speaker Ali Larijani and Vahid Haghanian, a former commander...

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