TEHRAN (Iran News) – Prominent presidential hopefuls register last day. On the last day of registration for the presidential elections, many prominent political figures went to the Ministry of Interior to register as presidential candidates for the June 18 elections.
Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi, the Judiciary chief, was perhaps the most well-known figure to enter the presidential race.
He said his nomination as a candidate does not negate the candidacy of others.
The main principlist faction, which consists of several principlist groups, has said its favored candidate is Raisi.
“Though many groups asked me” to enter the presidential race “but my presence does not negate the presence of anybody,” the top judge remarked.
“competitor of aristocracy, incompetence, and corruption”
He said like all others who felt it is necessary to contest the elections “I also felt that we need a great reform in the country.”
Talking to reporters at the premises of the Interior Ministry, Raisi said he considers himself a “competitor of aristocracy, incompetence, and corruption.”
He added, “I am not the competitor of political factions and different groups.”
The top judge said his priorities are foreign policy, especially establishing good relations with neighbors, promoting production sector, improving economy and reducing unemployment.
Raisi said he decided to enter the race upon requests by clerical associations, university professors, students, farmers, investors, and entrepreneurs.
The presidential candidate added, “The current disappointments (about economy) can turn into hope in another government.”
Raeisi challenged the post of president in the 2017 election. He came second after Hassan Rouhani.
‘Politician registers to run for president’
Former Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani registered to run for the presidential post on Saturday.
Larijani, a three-time parliament speaker, ran for president in 2005.
Larijani, a philosopher-turned politician, also was the head of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) for ten years.
He was also the secretary of the Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) in the early years of the Ahmadinejad administration in 2005. As top security chief, he also served as Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator with the European trio of Britain, Germany and France as well as the EU foreign policy chief who at the time was Javier Solana.
Mohsen Hashemi, a member of the central council of the Executives of Construction Party, on Saturday registered to run for the presidential post.
Mohsen Hashemi is currently the president of the Tehran City Council which is dominated by reformists.
A pro-reform figure, Mohsen Hashemi is the son of former late president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
‘Jalili nominates as presidential candidate, says country should progress steadily’
On Saturday, the last day to register to run as presidential candidate, Saeed Jalili, former secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, also went to the Interior Ministry to announce his candidacy.
He said that the country cannot be administered with “shows.”
He reiterated that the country should not just be administered in the next four years, but it should progress as well.
The former SNSC chief expressed hope that the upcoming elections would be “passionate and stress-free.”
Jalili ran unsuccessfully for the post of president in the 2013 elections, losing the battle to current president Hassan Rouhani.
Es’hagh Jahangiri, the first vice president, also nominated to contest the presidential race.
At a press conference held in the Ministry of Interior after his registration, Jahangiri stated that his administration would move towards resolving Iran’s fundamental problems, securing national interests and reduce tension inside and outside the country.
Former MP Mohammad Khoshchereh, a trained economist, also nominated to run for the post of president.
Khoshchereh came to prominence as he represented Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a televised presidential debate against Mohammad Reza Nobakht (the current chief of the Budget and Planning Organization) who represented Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani in the runoff presidential elections in 2005.
However, later Khoshchereh became a fierce opponent of Ahmadinejad’s economic policies.
Masoud Pezeshkian, a heart surgeon who served as health minister in the Mohammad Khatami administration, also registered on Saturday to run for the post of president.
Pezeshkian, a pro-reform figure, was vice speaker in the previous parliament. He currently represents the Tabriz constituency in the parliament. The sitting MP was accompanied by her daughter while going to the Interior Ministry to register.
He said it is a wrong idea to resolve problems through people who have held posts and caused these problems.
On Saturday afternoon, central banker Abdolnaser Hemmati also registered to run for the presidential election. Hemmati is considered as a figure who succeeded to put a brake on the skyrocketing inflation rate resulting from Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign against Iran.
The registration for presidential election ends on Saturday, May, 15. Candidates should refer to the Interior Ministry to register.
The presidential election will be held on June 12.