RFL/RE – Thousands of Iranians burned the U.S. flag and celebrated the “decline of America” as they marked the anniversary of the seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran by militant students 37 years ago.
“America is no longer No. 1 and the first power of the world,” the deputy head of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, Hossein Salami, told the crowd gathered on November 3. “America’s political will can no longer manage political and military development in…the world of Islam. America’s political power has strongly declined.”
Similar protests take place every year outside the compound that once housed the U.S. Embassy on the anniversary of the 1979 takeover during the Islamic Revolution in Iran.
On November 4, 1979, Iranian militant students stormed the embassy, taking 52 Americans hostage for 444 days after Washington refused to hand over Iran’s toppled shah, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, for trial in Iran.
The two countries have had no diplomatic relations since then.
Based on reporting by AP and AFP