Saturday 25 February 2017

Polls open in first Iran election since historic nuclear deal

An electoral banner backing President Hassan Rouhani hangs outside the former US embassy in Tehran (AP)
An electoral banner backing President Hassan Rouhani hangs outside the former US embassy in Tehran (AP)

Polls have opened in Iran's parliamentary election, the first since the nation's landmark nuclear deal with world powers last year.

Iranians are also voting for the Assembly of Experts, a clerical body empowered to choose or dismiss the country's supreme leader.

About 53,000 polling stations throughout Iran take ballots for the 290-member parliament and the 88-member experts assembly. Nearly 55 million Iranians are eligible to vote.

The vote is largely a referendum on moderate president Hassan Rouhani following last summer's historic nuclear agreement, which curbed Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions.

Reformists seeking greater democratic changes and moderates supporting Mr Rouhani are pitted against hardliners who oppose the nuclear deal and openings with the West.

Press Association

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