Ira­ni­ans vote in first pres­i­den­tial elec­tion since nu­clear deal with world pow­ers

NT News - - NEWS -

TEHRAN: Ira­ni­ans voted yes­ter­day in the coun­try’s first pres­i­den­tial elec­tion since its nu­clear deal with world pow­ers, as in­cum­bent Has­san Rouhani faced a staunch chal­lenge from a hard-line op­po­nent over his out­reach to the West.

The elec­tion is largely viewed as a ref­er­en­dum on the more mod­er­ate poli­cies of the 68-year-old cleric, pic­tured.

The poli­cies paved the way for the nu­clear ac­cord de­spite op­po­si­tion from hard-lin­ers.

Eco­nomic is­sues also will be on the minds of Iran’s over 56 mil­lion el­i­gi­ble vot­ers as they head to more than 63,000 polling places across the coun­try.

The av­er­age Ira­nian has yet to see the ben­e­fits of the deal, which saw Iran limit its con­tested nu­clear pro­gram in ex­change for the lift­ing of some sanc­tions.

Supreme Leader Ay­a­tol­lah Ali Khamenei, the most pow­er­ful man in Iran, sym­bol­i­cally cast the elec­tion’s first vote and called on Ira­ni­ans to turn out in huge num­bers.

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