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6 candidates to run in Iran's presidential election
www.chinaview.cn 2005-05-23 03:00:19

    TEHRAN, May 22 (Xinhuanet) -- Iran's hardline election and legislation supervisory body, the Guardians Council, approved Sunday six key candidate applicants to stand in the upcoming presidential elections, excluding almost all reformists, state television reported.

    Former president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, a front-runner inrecent public opinion polls, is among the six qualified candidates.He is known for his pragmatic stance in economic and diplomatic affairs.

    The others include former police chief Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf,former state broadcasting body chief Ali Larijani, Tehran Mayor Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, former parliamentary speaker Mahdi Karroubiand former head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Mohsen Rezaei.Karroubi is viewed as the only pro-reformist politician amongthe six qualified candidates.

    Qalibaf, Larijani, Rezaei and Ahmadinejad, all loyal to SupremeLeader Seyed Ali Khamenei, are widely believed to be conservatives or ultraconservatives.

    Former Culture Minister Mostafa Moin, the hopeful candidate ofIran's largest reformist party, the Islamic Iran Participation Front, was among the disqualified as predicted by many analysts.Iran's 9th presidential elections are scheduled on June 17, and registration of candidates was held from May 10 to 14, during which more than 1,000 people registered to participate in the elections.The incumbent President Mohammad Khatami is ruled out from therace because the law bans anyone to run for a consecutive third term. Enditem

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