Middle East

Hard-line former president of Iran won't seek re-election

  • FILE-- In this file photo taken on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad waves from his car outside his house in northeastern Tehran, Iran. An adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's former hard-line president, says the politician won't seek re-election in next year's presidential vote after apparently being discouraged by the country's supreme leader. In comments reported Monday, Khamenei was quoted as saying he recommended an unnamed candidate not seek office as it would spark a "polarized situation" that would be "harmful for the county." (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)

    FILE-- In this file photo taken on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad waves from his car outside his house in northeastern Tehran, Iran. An adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's former hard-line president, says the politician won't seek re-election in next year's presidential vote after apparently being discouraged by the country's supreme leader. In comments reported Monday, Khamenei was quoted as saying he recommended an unnamed candidate not seek office as it would spark a "polarized situation" that would be "harmful for the county." (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE---In this file photo taken on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, second left, reads a petition for help from a woman while others wait in queue outside his house in northeastern Tehran, Iran. An adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's former hard-line president, says the politician won't seek re-election in next year's presidential vote after apparently being discouraged by the country's supreme leader. In comments reported Monday, Khamenei was quoted as saying he recommended an unnamed candidate not seek office as it would spark a "polarized situation" that would be "harmful for the county." (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)

    FILE---In this file photo taken on Monday, Aug. 3, 2015, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, second left, reads a petition for help from a woman while others wait in queue outside his house in northeastern Tehran, Iran. An adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's former hard-line president, says the politician won't seek re-election in next year's presidential vote after apparently being discouraged by the country's supreme leader. In comments reported Monday, Khamenei was quoted as saying he recommended an unnamed candidate not seek office as it would spark a "polarized situation" that would be "harmful for the county." (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)  (The Associated Press)

An adviser to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran's former hard-line president, says the politician won't seek re-election in next year's presidential vote after apparently being discouraged by the country's supreme leader.

Iran's semi-official ISNA news agency quoted Ali Akbar Javanfekr on Tuesday as saying Ahmadinejad sent a letter to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei saying he wouldn't seek the presidency again.

In comments reported Monday, Khamenei was quoted as saying he recommended an unnamed candidate not seek office as it would spark a "polarized situation" that would be "harmful for the county."

Ahmadinejad previously served two four-year terms. Iranian law calls only for a one-term cooling-off period.

During his presidency, Ahmadinejad repeatedly questioned the scale of the Nazi Holocaust and predicted the demise of Israel. He also greatly expanded Iran's contested nuclear program.