Middle East

Iran: Clerical body has vetted presidential candidates

  • FILE- In this Friday, April 14, 2017 file photo, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani smiles as he attends at the Interior Ministry to register his candidacy for the May 19 presidential elections, in Tehran, Iran. Iranian state TV said Thursday, April 20, that the body charged with vetting candidates has disqualified former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from running in next month's presidential election. It carried an Interior Ministry statement saying that Rouhani has been approved to run for re-election. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)

    FILE- In this Friday, April 14, 2017 file photo, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani smiles as he attends at the Interior Ministry to register his candidacy for the May 19 presidential elections, in Tehran, Iran. Iranian state TV said Thursday, April 20, that the body charged with vetting candidates has disqualified former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from running in next month's presidential election. It carried an Interior Ministry statement saying that Rouhani has been approved to run for re-election. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE- In this April 15, 2017, file photo, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gives an interview to The Associated Press at his office in Tehran, Iran. Iranian state TV said Thursday, April 20, that the body charged with vetting candidates has disqualified former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from running in next month's presidential election. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)

    FILE- In this April 15, 2017, file photo, former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad gives an interview to The Associated Press at his office in Tehran, Iran. Iranian state TV said Thursday, April 20, that the body charged with vetting candidates has disqualified former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from running in next month's presidential election. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi, File)  (The Associated Press)

Iranian state media says the Guardian Council has vetted candidates for next month's presidential election and will forward the final list to the Interior Ministry.

The IRNA news agency quoted Guardian Council spokesman Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei as saying the list will be sent on Thursday to the Interior Ministry, which will then publicly announce the names by Sunday.

He did not release any of the names of those who have been approved. Hundreds of people registered to run, including the current president, Hassan Rouhani, and former hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

The Guardian Council is a clerical body, half of whose 12 members are appointed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The council rejects all candidates who are seen as challenging clerical rule.