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Iran: Thousands Rally On Anniversary Of Hostage Taking At U.S. Embassy

Tehran, 4 November 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Thousands of Iranians rallied today outside the former U.S. Embassy in Tehran to mark the date when students stormed the compound 24 years ago. Demonstrators, including many schoolchildren, waved banners and chanted "Death to America" and "Death to Israel."

Iranian students occupied the U.S. Embassy on 4 November 1979, in the wake of Iran's Islamic revolution, after the United States offered to take in the deposed Shah. The students held the embassy staff hostage there for 444 days.

One speaker at today's rally was Sohail Karimi, one of two Iranian journalists freed yesterday after being held by U.S. troops in Iraq. Karimi repeated accusations, denied by the U.S. military, that the journalists were tortured after their arrest.