Iran names street after Rachel Corrie

Tehran city council has named a street after an American activist who was crushed to death by an Israeli military bulldozer in the Gaza Strip in 2003, a local newspaper has reported.

The report in the Hamshahri, a daily affiliated with Tehran’s authorities, said the council has named the street Rachel Aliene Corrie. It said the sign would be placed in the city centre, but did not say when it would be displayed.

Corrie, a pro-Palestinian activist from Washington, was trying to prevent what she and other campaigners believed was a push by the Israeli military to demolish nearby Palestinian homes. She was 23 at the time of her death.

Iran does not recognise Israel and supports the Palestinians.

The decision marked the first time an Iranian street has been named after a US national since the 1979 Islamic revolution that ousted the pro-west shah Muhammad Reza Pahlavi.

Before the revolution, at least three high streets in the Iranian capital were named after former US presidents: Dwight Eisenhower, John F Kennedy and Franklin Roosevelt.

Iran and the US have not had diplomatic ties since militant students occupied the US embassy in Tehran, holding American diplomats hostage for 444 days from 1979 to 1981.

There are a few streets in the city named after western nationals, including Bobby Sands, a member of the IRA who died on hunger strike in a British prison in 1981, and Edward Brown, a British Orientalist known for his work on Iranian history.

Washington and its allies say Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons, and have imposed sanctions on the country. Tehran maintains its nuclear programme is for peaceful purposes.

This article was first published by The Guardian


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