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How Iran’s next parliament will affect foreign policy

Though Iran’s conservatives will rule the upcoming parliament, they might not rule with an iron fist as some expect.
Iranian lawmakers attend a session of parliament in Tehran, Iran July 16, 2019. Nazanin Tabatabaee/WANA (West Asia News Agency) via REUTERS. ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. - RC1120AED380

As expected, conservatives (known as Principlists) won Iran's parliamentary election Feb. 21 with about 85% of the vote. This election was a revival for conservatives after their defeat in previous parliamentary and presidential elections. More importantly, conservatives' victory could be a prelude to a win in next year’s presidential election.

If that happens, conservatives will control most political positions — the presidency, parliament, judiciary, Assembly of Experts, Guardian Council and Expediency Discernment Council — and will have great influence on domestic and foreign policy. In contrast, Reformists, who took only about 5% of the parliamentary vote, will be virtually removed from Iranian politics for a while.

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