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Rohani Welcomes Results From Runoff Election

Iranian President Hassan Rohani

Iranian President Hassan Rohani has welcomed the success of the moderate-reformist bloc in the second round of parliamentary elections.

Speaking on May 1 at a ceremony marking worker’s day, Rohani congratulated voters for “choosing the best” in the April 29 runoff elections and the original vote in February.

Reformist and moderate politicians allied with Rohani won 42 percent of the total seats, short of an absolute majority.

But their conservative rivals were outnumbered for the first time since 2004.

There will be 133 reformists and 125 conservative deputies in the 290-seat legislature. The remaining seats went to independents and minorities.

A record number of 17 women, nearly all reformists, will become lawmakers, one more than the number of clerics.

Although the female lawmakers represent only 9 percent of the total, there are only nine conservative women in the outgoing chamber.

The second round of voting took place in constituencies where candidates failed to get 25 percent of votes cast in the first round.

The Iranian parliament has no direct control over major policy matters, but it can back the policies of Rohani to bolster the economy.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, BBC, and Reuters