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Tehran mayor withdraws from Iran’s presidential race



Iranian presidential candidate Alireza Zakani on Thursday pulled out of the country’s presidential race, becoming the second nominee to announce his withdrawal ahead of the election scheduled for Friday.

Zakani, 58, the incumbent mayor of the Iranian capital Tehran, announced his pullout on social media X, and asked fellow principlists candidates, Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf and Saeed Jalili, to unite in order to prevent the ascent of a reform-leaning candidate.

“We must consolidate our efforts to address the rightful aspirations of revolutionary factions, thereby preventing the formation of another Rouhani administration.”

The announcement came one day after another principlist candidate Amir-Hossein Ghazizadeh Hashemi, 53, pulled out from the race. Hashemi is current serving as the vice president.

Hashemi said his decision aims to “preserve the unity of the forces of the revolution,” and strengthen the principlist front.

Two other presidential candidates are Masoud Pezeshkian and Mostafa Pourmohammadi.

Pezeshkian, 70, was Iran’s health minister during 2001-2005 and Pourmohammadi, 64, used to serve as Iran’s interior minister and justice minister.

Iran’s 14th presidential election, initially set for 2025, was rescheduled following Raisi’s unexpected death in a helicopter crash in the country’s mountainous northwestern region on May 19.

Halima Sheji

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