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Report: Jahangiri, Larijani disqualified from running in June 18 election

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iran’s Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri (L) and former Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani

A report by the Iranian Fars news agency says Iran’s Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri and former Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani have been disqualified by the country’s Constitutional Council from running in the June 18 presidential election.

Fars said in a report late on Monday (May 24) that the Constitutional Council had completed the vetting of presidential hopefuls and forwarded a final list of individuals approved to run to the Interior Ministry.

It cited its correspondent as saying that the names of Jahangiri and Larijani, as well as that of former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, were not on the list.

The report, titled “Council rejects those responsible for the status quo,” also included an image of Reformist candidate Mostafa Tajzadeh, but did not name him in the text.

The report could not be independently verified. The Constitutional Council has several times in recent days rejected speculation about whom it has and has not approved.

Jahangiri, who is still serving as vice president in the administration of incumbent Hassan Rouhani, has been fielded as the Reformist camp’s top candidate. He entered the race after another member of President Rouhani’s cabinet, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, decided against running himself. Zarif was seen as the Reformist camp’s best bet.

Larijani, the longest-serving speaker of Parliament from 2008 to 2020, implied in several tweets after registration as a hopeful that he intended to take on both the Reformist and Principlist camps’ candidates.

If confirmed, the absence of Jahangiri would mean that Ebrahim Raeisi, the current chief of the Iranian Judiciary and the preferred choice of the Principlist camp, will effectively have no heavyweight Reformist rival to reckon with.

Earlier on Monday, two other perceived Principlist candidates, former Defense Minister Hossein Dehqan and former Oil Minister Rostam Qassemi, dropped out of the race in Raeisi’s favor.

Separately, Fars reported that it had obtained access to an “unofficial” list of the final presidential candidates as approved by the Constitutional Council. It named Ebrahim Raeisi, Mohsen Rezaei, Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh, Sa’eed Jalili, Alireza Zakani, Abdol-Nasser Hemmati, and Amirhossein Ghazizadeh Hashemi as the candidates on the list.

Still later, Rouhollah Jom’eyi, an adviser to the Iranian interior minister, said on the social networking platform Clubhouse that the ministry had received no letter from the Constitutional Council as of yet, ISNA reported early on Tuesday (May 25).


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