Iran’s Interior Ministry released the much-awaited list of the candidates for the Presidential election due on June 18 and cleared their candidature for campaigning.
The list includes a number of prominent figures such as Saeed Jalili, Syed Ebrahim Raisi, Alireza Zakani, Sayed Amir Hossein Qazizadeh Hashemi, Mohsen Mahralizadeh, Mohsin Rezai and Abdol Nasser Himmati, Tehran Times reported, citing the statement of the Ministry.
The list was handed over to the Ministry on Tuesday by the Guardian Council, a 12-member constitutional vetting body overseen by Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatullah Syed Ali Khamenei, tasked with evaluating the candidatures of potential candidates, reported Al-Jazeera.
These candidates have been shown a green light to start campaigning and promote their candidature among the voters.
However, the list has startled many observers as it does not include the names of many prominent figures who have been disqualified from contesting elections, including Former Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani, First Vice-President EshaqJahnagiri, Former Chief of the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps Engineering Conglomerate Khatam-Al-Anbiya Saeed Mohammad.
However, Ahmad Raeesi who has headed Iran’s Judiciary since 2019 and currently serves as the Secretary of Iran’s Expediency Council is looked up to as the most potential candidate, but said he would be contesting the June 18 vote “independently”, reports Press TV.
The election vetting body disqualified at least 18 principlists and 14 reformist candidates, Tehran Times reported citing Iran’s hardline news website Fars News. It is also reported that the Guardian Council’s considerations are apolitical and do not incline to any political faction. Instead, the entire vetting process is done in accordance with the law.
Iran’s political discourses seem to be mostly influenced by its foreign policy stance on nuclear proliferation, which culminated into Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action between P5+1 nations (United States, Britain, Russia, France, Germany, and European Union and Iran) in October 2016 and upcoming candidates’ approach to dispel the presence of the west in the middle east.