Iran: Thousands Disqualified From Running For Parliament
Iran’s constitutional watchdog has disqualified thousands of people from running in next month's parliamentary elections, including 90 current lawmakers, most of whom are accused of corruption.
The Guardian Council, a body of senior clerics and legal experts, vets candidates for office as well as legislation, and rules out individuals if it believes their views or behavior are incompatible with the theocratic system.
Half its members are appointed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Associated Press (AP) reported.
Spokesman for the Guardian Council Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei said more than 14,000 people registered to run in December.
Of those, just 5,000 qualified, he noted.
Of the 290 current members of parliament, 247 registered to run for re-election.
Kadkhodaei said those who were rejected can appeal the decision in the coming days.
The elections will test the popularity of the relatively moderate and pro-reform bloc led by President Hassan Rouhani.
Iran regularly holds presidential and parliamentary elections, but they are closely supervised by the clerical establishment.
According to AP, the supreme leader has the final say on all major policies.