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Iran's Guardians Council Approves 200 Candidates

Tehran, 20 January 2004 (RFE/RL) -- Iran's Guardians Council has reinstated 200 of more than 3,000 reformist candidates that the conservative constitutional watchdog had barred from participating in elections next month.

The council today said on its website that it had reinstated the candidates during a review process it started after a request last week by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei .

The Guardians Council says it is continuing to review the candidates -- which include some 80 sitting reformist parliamentarians -- who are hoping to run in the 20 February vote.

There was no immediate comment from reformist parliamentarians who have been conducting a sit-in protest in parliament for more than a week over the Guardians Council decision.