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Iran election: President Rouhani registers to run again

Iran election: President Rouhani registers to run again

Earlier this week, Iran's election commission had announced two days ago that the number of candidates has exceeded 950 candidates, most notably - other than Rouhani and Raisi - is the contentious ex-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his former deputy Hamid Baghaei.

Every president since the early 1980s has won a second term, and Rouhani has done much to maintain his alliance of moderates and reformists - stabilising the economy and signing a landmark nuclear deal with world powers that ended many sanctions and promised a fresh start with the global community. The council normally does not approve dissidents or women for the formal candidate list.

Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the recent USA missile strike on Syria did not faze him in a recent interview with the Associated Press. "I am urging all Iranians to vote for Iran and for Islam", Rouhani told reporters on Friday.

Rohani negotiated the Iranian nuclear deal with world powers past year, but some disappointment that the accord has not spurred economic growth has boosted the opposition against him. Some erstwhile supporters who had hoped for radical social changes under his presidency are also critical, saying he has failed to stand up to Iran's conservative religious establishment.

He added, "Maintaining regional balance and preemptive power is essential for a country like Iran which has endangered interests of major powers and sent message of justice and freedom to the world".

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Iran's upcoming presidential election likely will pit incumbent President Hassan Rouhani against a variety of contenders, but first all must be vetted by a panel as part of the Islamic Republic's one-of-a-kind government.

The 56-year-old judge, who now runs the powerful charity-cum-business-empire Astan Qods Razavi, has emphasised his concern for the poor and is seen as a close ally of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Speaking at a defense ministry event to show off new Iranian-made weapons, Rouhani claimed that the country's development of ballistic missiles and other advanced arms is strictly for defensive purposes. Iran has since resumed selling oil and signed deals worth billions of dollars to replace its aging commercial airline inventory.

Influential Shi'ite cleric Ebrahim Raisi appears to be the leading choice so far. That's not to say it will be easy for Rouhani.

Iran's presidential election is going to be held on May 19.


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