TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian state television says that only seven candidates have been approved by the country’s constitutional watchdog to run for president next month. The report Tuesday drastically narrowing the field of hopefuls for who will replace outgoing President Hassan Rouhani. The report did not name those selected, though rumors have circulated that reformists and moderates vying for the spot may have been barred from running by the Guardian Council. State TV quoted Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei, the spokesman of the Guardian Council, as saying “only seven” had been approved. Iran’s judiciary chief Ebrahim Raisi, a hard-line cleric who ran against Rouhani in 2017, is considered among analysts to be the strongest candidate in the upcoming vote.
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