Karroubi to Announce Candidacy in Oct.

A05165296.jpgTEHRAN (FNA)- Former Parliament Speaker Mehdi Karroubi said he would announce his final decision about running in the presidential election by October 21.

“By the end of Mehr (October 21) I will decide about running in the election,” the reformist figure, who ran unsuccessfully for president in the 2005 election, was quoted by press tv as saying on Thursday.

The Iranian election supervisory body, the Council of the Guardians, has set June 12, 2009 as the date for Iran’s tenth presidential election.

Karroubi, who is also the Secretary-General of the National Confidence Party, acknowledged that former president Mohammad Khatami remains doubtful concerning the presidential race.

“I need to consider how my participation in the elections might impact current trends. That is why I have not yet announced my decision (about the candidacy),” Khatami told members of the Coordination Council of Reforms Front in mid-September.

Khatami was elected president in 1997 and again in 2001 on a reformist platform.

“Former vice president Mohammad Reza Aref will stand for the presidential race if Khatami does not run in the election,” Karroubi said.

In August, the National Confidence Party officially nominated Karroubi as its candidate in Iran’s next presidential balloting.

In a unanimous vote, the party’s central council approved Karroubi’s participation in Iran’s 10th presidential race as, party spokesman Ismail Gerami-Moqaddam announced.

The decision was made following three weeks of deliberations by the party’s central council, he added.

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