Moderate cleric Hassan Rowhani has a clear lead in Iran’s presidential election, garnering 51 percent of the vote at 65 percent of polling stations across the country, the interior ministry said on Saturday.
Rowhani, a former top nuclear negotiator, collected 11,754,013 votes out of 23,014,873 counted by 3:30 pm (1100 GMT), the ministry said.
Tehran Mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf was in distant second place with 15.18 percent.
He was followed by former Revolutionary Guards commander Mohsen Rezai with 11.83 percent; Saeed Jalil, Iran’s top nuclear negotiator, at 11.26 percent; Ali Akbar Velayati at 6.1 percent and Mohammad Gharazi at 1.2 percent.
More than 50.5 million Iranians were eligible to vote to elect a successor to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who was constitutionally barred from standing again after serving two consecutive terms.