IRAN: Tehran names street for late U.S. activist Rachel Corrie

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Iran has decided to name a street in honor of Rachel Corrie, an American pro-Palestinian activist who was killed while protesting against the demolition of Palestinian homes in the Gaza strip eight years ago. It’s the first time since Iran’s Islamic Revolution in 1979 that an Iranian street has been named after an American.

On Thursday, an article published in the Iranian newspaper Hamshari, a daily close to the Tehran city council and the mayor of the capital, said the council will name a street in Tehran after Corrie, a 23-year old Olympia, Wash., native who was killed by an Israeli military bulldozer in 2003 when she tried to prevent the Israeli Defense Forces from tearing down a Palestinian home.


The report said the street sign would be put up in central Tehran, but it was not immediately clear when that would happen.

Before the 1979 revolution and ousting of the shah, several large streets in Tehran were named after U.S. presidents, including Eisenhower Street, which used to run from Tehran’s current Azadi Square to Enghelab Square. Roosevelt Street, meanwhile, ran along the eastern side of the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran.

These days, however, few streets in Iran are named after Western nationals, although there is the occasional exception.

In the 1980s, Winston Churchill Boulevard, the site of the British Embassy, was renamed Bobby Sands Street after the Irish Republican Army IRA member who went on a hunger strike and died in prison in Northern Ireland in 1981.


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-- Ramin Mostaghim in Tehran and Alexandra Sandels in Beirut