Vote counting underway across country

TEHRAN, Feb. 27 (MNA) – Iran’s Parliament and Assembly of Experts elections have entered the vote counting stage.

Iranians went to the polls in over 1,063 constituencies for the fifth round of the Assembly of Experts and the tenth Parliamentary elections on Friday.

Election process started in Iran at 8 am local time (04:30 GMT) on Friday in over 52,000 polling stations nationwide with more than 54 million Iranians eligible to participate in the event.

Casting ballots was supposed to continue till 18:00 local time while it was extended for a number of times across the country and particularly in the Province of Tehran and numerous major provinces as the people in the capital kept casting ballots even at the final hours of voting lasting until midnight.

Polling stations across Iran closed doors after several extensions at 23:45 while the people present at the voting stations were still allowed to cast votes.

Upon the closure of polls, the vote counting stage was launched and the results will be publically announced continuously.

Both the 10th parliamentary as well as the 5th Assembly of Experts elections took place on February 26 providing the chance that some voters would cast their votes in the wrong ballot box.

Accordingly, the authorities have announced that during the vote counting, ballots mistakenly dropped into wrong box would be carried to the right box beofre counting begins. Further, Assembly of Experts votes will be counted and then it will be turn for Parliament votes.

Currently, the Parliament has 290 representatives fourteen of whom represent non-Muslim religious minorities and women constitute about eight percent of the Parliament members.

A total of 4,844 hopefuls, including about 500 women, who have been qualified from amongst 12,000 registered candidates by the Guardian Council, took part in the race on Friday to occupy parliamentary seats. At least 21 people will vie for each seat in the legislature. The elected candidates will serve from May 3, 2016 for a four-year term.

The Assembly of Experts will also see its 88 members elected for another eight-year term. While 800 Islamic theologians, including women, registered for the high-ranking body, only 159 were approved with no women allowed to stand for the assembly.

 

HA/HR

 

News Code 114797

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