*

upload_article_image

Iran state TV says Ahmadinejad will run in presidential race

Iran's state television reported Wednesday that the country's former firebrand president will run again for office in upcoming elections in June.

Broadcast footage showed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad marching accompanied by supporters to a registration center at the Interior Ministry where he filled out registration forms.

Ahmadinejad in recent years has tried to polish his hardline image into a more centrist candidacy, criticizing the government for mismanagement.

The Holocaust-denying Ahmadinejad has previously been banned from running for the presidency by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in 2017, although then, he registered anyway.

Khamenei said Tuesday that he would not oppose the nomination of any candidate, although the electoral council may still block Ahmadinejad's candidacy. In either case, the populist's return to the political scene may energize discontent among hard-liners who seek a tougher stance against the west — particularly Israel and the U.S.