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Iran begins registration for municipal council elections

Iran's state radio says candidates can begin to register for municipal council elections scheduled for June.

The councils have little power. But unlike in parliamentary and presidential contests, the candidates are not vetted by a clerically dominated constitutional watchdog group and are considered an indicator of political trends.

Iranian elections pit the dominant conservatives against reformers and the populist following of outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who broke with the conservatives after he was perceived to challenge clerical authority last year.

Registration opened Monday for the June 14 vote, which will be held alongside the presidential elections to choose Ahmadinejad's successor.

Ahmadinejad has little chance of seeing one of his allies becoming president, but still has backers on the local level who could be the foundation of a future political movement.