Look at Iran's voters and election process

Associated Press
FILE - In this Wednesday, may 29, 2013 file photo, female supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Saeed Jalili, seen in posters, also Iran's top nuclear negotiator, chant slogans, as he arrives at a campaign rally attended by his female supporters, in Tehran, Iran. Iranians have seen it before: A youngish presidential candidate firing up crowds with fist-waving rants against the West, then displaying his Islamist bona fides with courtesy calls to hard-line clerics. Jalili, familiar to outsiders because of his prominence as a nuclear negotiator, has tried to distance himself from outgoing president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has fallen out with the clerical leadership that controls Iran. But he is employing the same strategy that worked for Ahmadinejad eight years ago _ and in the murky world of Iranian politics, where there are no credible polls and elections are a highly controlled affair, it has made him, for many, the presumed front-runner. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)
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FILE - In this Wednesday, may 29, 2013 file photo, female supporters of the Iranian presidential candidate Saeed Jalili, seen in posters, also Iran's top nuclear negotiator, chant slogans, as he arrives at a campaign rally attended by his female supporters, in Tehran, Iran. Iranians have seen it before: A youngish presidential candidate firing up crowds with fist-waving rants against the West, then displaying his Islamist bona fides with courtesy calls to hard-line clerics. Jalili, familiar to outsiders because of his prominence as a nuclear negotiator, has tried to distance himself from outgoing president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has fallen out with the clerical leadership that controls Iran. But he is employing the same strategy that worked for Ahmadinejad eight years ago _ and in the murky world of Iranian politics, where there are no credible polls and elections are a highly controlled affair, it has made him, for many, the presumed front-runner. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)

A look at Iran's voters, presidents and election procedures:

SIZE: There are more than 50 million eligible voters in a population of about 76 million. About a third of the voters are under 30 — born after the 1979 Islamic Revolution. About 60 percent of the voters are in cities.

VOTERS: Voting age is 18, raised from 16 in 2007. Iranians abroad can vote in diplomatic compounds and other polling sites.

PRESIDENTIAL PROCESS: The Guardian Council, controlled by the ruling clerics, vets all candidates for high office. In this election, 686 names were submitted and eight were allowed to run. A simple majority — 50 percent plus 1 of votes cast — is needed for victory. Otherwise, a two-candidate runoff will be held. The winner will take office in late August.

OTHER ELECTIONS: Municipal elections will also be taking place alongside the presidential vote for the first time. Nearly 350,000 candidates are registered for some 170 seats on municipal councils.

TURNOUT: Voter turnout was reported at nearly 85 percent in the disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2009. In 2005, turnout was reported as 63 percent in the first round and 60 percent in the second. In 2001, it was reported as 68 percent.

WHO RUNS THE ELECTION: The Interior Ministry oversees the election. No outside election observers are permitted. Protesters in 2009 claimed vote rigging denied reformist candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi victory and handed victory to Ahmadinejad. The ministry data claimed that Ahmadinejad had strong backing in rural areas that overcame Mousavi's core support in Tehran and other cities. Mousavi and another 2009 candidate, Mahdi Karroubi, have been under house arrest since early 2011.

PAST PRESIDENTS: Abulhassan Banisadr (1980-81, dismissed by parliament); Mohammad Ali Rajai (August 1981, assassinated); Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, now Supreme Leader (1981-89); Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani (1989-97); Mohammad Khatami (1997-2005); Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005-13).

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