Presidential Elections Begin in Iran

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Over 60,000 polling stations opened across Iran on Friday as the Islamic Republic votes in its 11th presidential elections.

TEHRAN, June 14 (RIA Novosti) - Over 60,000 polling stations opened across Iran on Friday as the Islamic Republic votes in its 11th presidential elections.

The vote is due to end at 18:00 local time [13:30 GMT]. About 50.5 million people out of Iran’s population of some 75 million are eligible to vote, including more than 1.6 million first-time voters.

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called for a high voter turnout. According to Iranian media forecasts, the turnout will be above 60 percent, about 25 percent less than during the 2009 polls.

Iranian citizens abroad will be able to cast their ballot at 290 polling stations in 96 countries.

A runoff will be held on June 21 if none of the candidates gathers more than 50 percent of the vote. Recent opinion polls indicate that the runoff is likely.

Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar said on Thursday his ministry, charged with security and organizing issues, was absolutely prepared for the polls.

 

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