Iran’s government displayed a ballistic missile while crowds chanted “down with the US” , “death to Israel” and burned American and Israeli flags as the country marked the anniversary of the 1979 U.S. embassy takeover and hostage crisis on Saturday.
Thousands of people gathered in front of the former embassy site in Tehran to commemorate one of the pivotal events of the Islamic Revolution.
The former embassy in Tehran is now a cultural center while standing as a symbol of a U.S. defeat for many Iranians. Many Iranians call it the “den of spies.”
In an apparent show of force, the gathering included a surface-to-surface Sejji missile with a range of 1,200 miles. It was the first time Iran had displayed a missile at the annual event and comes a month after President Trump refused to re-certify Iran’s compliance with its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.
Iran’s leaders say they are proud of its missile program.
“That America thinks Iran is going to put aside its military power is a childish dream,” said Brigadier General Hossein Salami, deputy head of its elite Revolutionary Guards which oversees the missile development, Reuters reported, citing the Iranian news agency Tasnim.
Ali Shamkhani, secretary of the country’s Supreme National Security Council, addressed the crowd, saying Iran will make any sanctions imposed by the U.S. “ineffective” even as the U.S. targets Iran’s economic, nuclear and defensive power.