TEHRAN (Iran News) – In separate statements released on Monday night, five presidential hopefuls, including Rostam Qasemi, Mohammad Hassan Nami, Alireza Afshar and Hossein Dehghan, withdrew from the election race in favor of Ebrahim Raeisi and the “Revolution Front”.
Dehghan, the former defense minister in Hassan Rouhani’s first administration, said after careful consideration and consultation with advisors he decided to quit the race in favor of Raeisi.
Ghasemi, the oil minister in Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s second administration who was also chief of the Khatam-al Anbiya Construction Headquarters from 2007 to 2011, also issued a statement saying that he quits in favor of the “Revolution Front.”
Mohammad Hassan Nami, a former military officer, also issued a statement on Monday night announcing that he is quitting the election race in order to increase Raeisi’s share of votes.
Alireza Afshar, another principlist candidate who served as deputy interior minister during the Ahmadinejad administration, withdrew from the race in favor of Raeisi.
In a statement issued on Sunday night, he said that his withdrawal will help Raeisi win more voters.
The presidential election will be held on June 18.
On Tuesday, the names of presidential candidates confirmed by the Guardian Council were released by the Interior Ministry.
The candidates found competent to run for the presidential post are seven persons. They are Judiciary Chief Raeisi; Expediency Council secretary Mohsen Rezaei; former Supreme National Security Council secretary Saeed Jalili; Deputy Parliament Speaker Amirhossein Qazizadeh; MP Alireza Zakani; central banker Abolnasser Hemmati; and former Physical Education Organization chief Mohsen Mehr-Alizadeh.