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Charismatic Tehran mayor defies establishment to stay in presidential race


ANKARA (Reuters) - The charismatic 55-year-old mayor of Tehran seems a long-shot contender for Iran's presidency, but could emerge as the main threat to President Hassan Rouhani if he beats other hardliners to emerge as the sole challenger in a second round.

A chisel-jawed former Revolutionary Guards commander with an action man persona, an airline pilot's licence and a populist economic message, Baqer Qalibaf has so far defied the clerical establishment by refusing to drop out before the May 19 vote.

   

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