Supporters of Iranian President and candidate in the upcoming presidential elections Hassan Rouhani raise his portrait as they attend a campaign rally in Takhti stadium in the northeastern city of Mashhad on May 17, 2017. / AFP / Behrouz MEHRI
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Iran's presidential election is seen as a referendum on Hassan Rouhani's outreach to Western nations and the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, which lifted crippling international sanctions. The average Iranian has yet to see benefits from the deal, making Rouhani vulnerable in his bid for another four-year term.Many Iranians believe Friday's election will not bring any major change regardless of who wins. Reformist candidates and women were again excluded from the ballot by a religious vetting committee. Of more than 1,600 hopefuls who registered to run, only six were allowed in the race. Ultimate power remains with the supreme leader, who is chosen by a religious body.Hard-liners are backing Ebrahim Raisi, considered close to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Authorities blocked a bid by former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a Holocaust-questioning hard-liner who had championed the country's disputed nuclear program.Every Iranian president since 1981, when Khamenei himself took the presidency, has won re-election.Here's what some Tehran residents told the Associated Press about the poll.WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUES FOR YOU THIS ELECTION?
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