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Iran to broadcast presidential debates live: Interior Ministry



Iran’s Election Campaign Monitoring Committee has revised an earlier decision not to cover live the planned presidential debates in the country, the Interior Ministry says.

The ministry spokesman, Seyyed Salman Samani, said on Saturday evening that the decision was revised following a consensus by the members of the monitoring committee during their meeting, which was convened at the Interior Ministry.

He, however, added that there were certain conditions for live debates, which will be announced later.

Among those attending the meeting were the country’s Attorney General Ja’afar Montazeri, Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli, Ehsan Qazizadeh, a member of the council supervising the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), head of the Interior Ministry’s Election Office, Ali Asghar Ahmadi, and IRIB Head Abdol-ali Ali-Askari.

The meeting followed strong criticism by the presidential candidates as well as the Iranian officials and people of the decision by the committee on Thursday not to air the debates live.

Presidential debates have been held in Iran for the two previous rounds of the elections, both of which were broadcast live on Iranian national television.

The six candidates running for the 12th presidential election are Mostafa Aqa-Salim, Mostafa Hashemi-Taba, Es’haq Jahangiri, Hassan Rouhani, Mohammad-Baqer Qalibaf and Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi.

Iranians will go to the polls on May 19 to elect the country’s next president.

Campaigning for Iran’s 12th presidential election officially started on Friday, a day after the Interior Ministry announced the final list of the candidates vetted by the Guardian Council, the body tasked with overseeing the election.

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