DUBAI (UAE) – Candidates started signing up on Tuesday for Iran’s June 18 presidential polls, with the clerical establishment looking forward to a high turnout in the vote. It is seen as a referendum on the way Islamic Republic’s political and economic crises has been dealt with.
As per news agencies close to the hardliners, prominent hardline cleric and judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi was likely to announce his candidacy.
“Following an increase in popular requests from Ayatollah Raisi for his candidacy in the presidential election, information obtained by Tanim’s reporter indicates that his candidacy has been confirmed,” the semi-official news agency Tasnim said. The agency Fars carried a similar report.
On Tuesday, Saeed Mohammad, the former head of a large construction and engineering conglomerate owned by the Revolutionary Guards, announced his plans to run.
However, Mohammad and several other hardliners have said they would pull out their candidacy if Raisi decided to run.
Raisi has emerged as one of Iran’s most powerful figures and a contender to be the successor to Khamenei, after being named to head the judiciary by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Registration for the election will run for five days, following which screening will done for entrants, with regard to their political and Islamic qualifications by a hardline vetting body, the Guardian Council.
On the other hand, President Hassan Rouhani, cannot seek re-election, after having served two consecutive four-year terms.