BREAKING NEWS

Rouhani, rival to run in Iran's presidential election, Ahmadinejad barred

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and hardline rival Ebrahim Raisi were both approved to run in May's presidential election by a government vetting body, while former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was disqualified, state media reported on Thursday.
The approval of Rouhani, a moderate, and Raisi, a political hardliner thought to have the backing of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, sets up a showdown between rival political camps.
Khamenei had advised Ahmadinejad not to run and his attempt to register as a candidate was widely seen as a public snub to the Supreme Leader, which is nearly unheard of in the Islamic Republic.
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