Voting underway in Iran's parliamentary elections

TEHRAN, Iran - Iranians were voting on Friday in parliamentary elections, the country's first since its landmark nuclear deal with world powers last summer.

See Full Article

The vote is in part seen as a referendum on the policies of moderate President Hassan Rouhani, who is credited with bringing about the deal that curbed Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of crippling international sanctions.

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

State TV showed long lines of people waiting to cast their ballots in the twin elections as the polls opened.

Some 53,000 polling stations throughout Iran are taking ballots for the 290-member parliament and the 88-member Experts Assembly. Nearly 55 million Iranians are eligible to vote.

In the parliament vote, reformists seeking greater democratic changes and moderates supporting Rouhani are pitted against hard-liners who oppose the nuclear deal and openings with the West.

The balloting is unlikely to change Iran's course over major policies regardless of who wins but a win by reformists and moderates will give Rouhani the support he needs as he tries to repair the economy and move toward warmer ties with the United States.

The barring of a majority of reformists from the race by the Guardian Council, a constitutional watchdog that vets election candidates, means they are unlikely to win a majority alone but a substantial bloc would mean a new shift in Iran's politics.

Among those who cast their ballot in the first hours of the voting was Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country's supreme leader who has the final say on all state matters. He had urged Iranians to vote, saying it was both a "right" and a "responsibility" and that a high turnout would boost Iran's image and might.

"Whoever likes Iran and its dignity, greatness and glory should participate in this election," he said after casting his ballot in Tehran. "We have enemies who are eyeing us greedily. Turnout in the elections should be such that our enemy will be disappointed and will lose its hope. People should be observant and vote with open eyes."

A high turnout is likely to help reformists and moderates to return in significant numbers in order to reduce hard-liners' ability to block Rouhani's agenda of economic, social and political reforms.

Late Thursday, Iran's Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli predicted a turnout of 70 per cent.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Children out of cancer treatment options offered hope by new Terry Fox program

    Canada News CBC News
    Seeing children suffering with cancer when he was being treated himself broke Terry Fox's heart and inspired his Marathon of Hope. Now, those efforts have fuelled a unique initiative to give kids and young adults across the country a chance to live when there are few, if any, treatment options left. Source
  • Newfoundland and Labrador announces weed will be sold through private stores

    Canada News CTV News
    ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Newfoundland and Labrador has announced recreational marijuana will be sold through private stores. The provincial government unveiled its plan Thursday, which will see the Crown-owned liquor corporation oversee the distribution to private retailers who will sell it. Source
  • Couillard denounces Adidas store manager's comments on French language

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL - Quebec's premier is criticizing the manager of an Adidas store who reportedly told a Montreal crowd that he would say a few words in French at an event to accommodate the city's French media. Source
  • Sask. Party leadership candidate walks back comment on abortion for rape victims

    Canada News CTV News
    REGINA -- A candidate in the race for premier of Saskatchewan is walking back his anti-abortion comments, saying victims of sexual assault should have access to the procedure. Saskatchewan Party legislature member Ken Cheveldayoff says in a release that any sex assault victim has the right to make the choice to have an abortion. Source
  • Ontario moves to allow Indigenous institutes to independently grant degrees

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO - Ontario is moving toward allowing Indigenous post-secondary institutes to independently grant students degrees and diplomas. A legislative change that would allow for the first step in that process was contained in the Liberal government's fall economic update bill, but the advanced education and Indigenous relations ministers highlighted it in an announcement today. Source
  • Tesla's massive battery in Australia is ready for testing

    World News CBC News
    The world's biggest battery is ready for testing in South Australia, with hopes it can help solve the energy problems plaguing that state. Tesla's Elon Musk promised back in March to build the 100-megawatt lithium ion battery within 100 days of signing a contract with the South Australia government. Source
  • Homeless man surprised with big reward for returning lost US$10K cheque

    World News CTV News
    A day before Americans gathered to celebrate U.S. Thanksgiving, a homeless man in Connecticut was given plenty to be thankful for when he was rewarded for his honesty. Two weeks ago, Elmer Alvarez found a cheque for US$10,000 (C$12,000 approximately) on the streets of New Haven, Conn. Source
  • Trial sees photos of suspected blood where off-duty cop was allegedly killed

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX - A detective has told a Halifax murder trial that he saw what he suspected to be blood droplets in the apartment where Christopher Garnier allegedly punched and strangled an off-duty police constable. Scroll down or click here to replay the live blog from the reporter in the courtroom. Source
  • Pair sentenced to 9 years in toddler scalding death

    Canada News CTV News
    A man and a woman have been sentenced to nine years in the death of an Ontario toddler who died after being scalded by coffee. Amanda Dumont, 33, and Scott Bakker, 27, were sentenced in a London, Ont. Source
  • Mother, partner sentenced to 9 years in toddler scalding death

    Canada News CTV News
    A mother and her partner have been sentenced to nine years in the death of her toddler, who died after being scalded by coffee in Strathroy, Ont.Reading on an app? Tap here for mobile experience Amanda Dumont, 33, and Scott Bakker, 27, were sentenced in a London, Ont. Source