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Iran Approves Six Presidential Candidates but Blocks Former President from Running

The most prominent candidate approved to run is Parliament Speaker Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf.

The Guardian Council of Iran on Sunday gave permission for six people to run in the Islamic Republic's election later this month after President Ebrahim Raisi and seven others died in a helicopter crash last month, although the council barred a former Iranian president from running yet again.

The council allowed the country's parliament speaker and five others to run in the June 28 presidential election, but stopped former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from participating, The Associated Press reported.

The council had already disqualified Ahmadinejad during the last election before disqualifying him on Sunday. He is remembered for challenging Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and presiding over a bloody crackdown on protests in 2009.

The most prominent candidate approved to run is Parliament Speaker Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf, a former mayor of Tehran who is linked to the country's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. He previously ran for president in 2005 and 2013, without success.

Other candidates are former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, Tehran mayor Alireza Zakani, former Minister of Justice Mostafa Pourmohammadi, Raisi's Vice President Amirhossein Ghazizadeh Hashem and Masoud Pezeshkian, the latter of whom is seen as the only reformist candidate.

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