2004 INDEXCountry Ranks
Iran Introduction - 2004
SOURCE: 2004 CIA WORLD FACTBOOK
Known as Persia until 1935, Iran became an Islamic republic in 1979 after the ruling shah was forced into exile. Conservative clerical forces established a theocratic system of government with ultimate political authority vested in a learned religious scholar. A group of Iranian students seized the US Embassy in Tehran on 4 November 1979 and held it until 20 January 1981. During 1980-88, Iran fought a bloody, indecisive war with Iraq over disputed territory. Over the past decade, popular dissatisfaction with the government, driven by demographic changes, restrictive social policies, and poor economic conditions, has been pressuring for political reform.
NOTE: The information regarding Iran on this page is re-published from the 2004 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Iran Introduction 2004 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Iran Introduction 2004 should be addressed to the CIA.