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Rohani Happy With Record Number Of Women In Parliament

Iranian President Hassan Rohani has praised the record number of women who were elected to the country's parliament.

"For the first time we have 18 women in parliament, and it is a record that makes us very happy," Rohani said on May 1 in Tehran, adding that he hopes more women will be inspired to get involved in politics.

A total of four women were elected in the runoff elections held on April 29, joining the 14 who were elected in the first round of voting in February.

In the previous parliament, only nine of the assembly's 290 members were women.

All 18 of the female lawmakers are either from Rohani's reformist faction or they ran as independents.

None of the hard-line women candidates was able to win a seat.

Despite setting a record, the small percentage of women legislators in Iran pales in comparison to those in Western countries.

There are currently 104 women in the 538 seats in the U.S. Congress, 19.4 percent of the total.

Based on reporting by dpa and ISNA