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Rouhani empowered as allies, supporters make gains in Iranian elections

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is set to have an easier last 15 months of his term due to voters' support of what Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Mohammad Khatami and Seyyed Hassan Khomeini stand for.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani (C) waves after he registered for February's election of the Assembly of Experts, the clerical body that chooses the supreme leader, at the Interior Ministry in Tehran December 21, 2015. REUTERS/Raheb Homavandi/TIMA ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. - RTX1ZKJQ

TEHRAN, Iran — Finally, Iran’s long-awaited parliamentary and Assembly of Experts elections have been held, and the results suggest that moderate President Hassan Rouhani and the Reformists have once again outmaneuvered the hard-liners.

The one distinguishing characteristic of the Feb. 26 twin elections was the heated war of tickets. Reformists and moderates reached agreement on a coalition and released a single ticket, known as the "List of Hope.” It was headed by former Reformist Vice President Mohammad Reza Aref and backed by moderate Ayatollah Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and former Reformist President Mohammad Khatami. Meanwhile, the Principlists put forth a ticket headed by former parliament Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel.

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