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Iranologists condemn deliberate distortion of Persian Gulf's name

Some 100 local and foreign Iranologists on Friday strongly condemned the deliberate attempt to change history by changing the name of the Persian Gulf, stressing the historical basis of the name, IRNA reported from Tehran.

Research should be given a high priority so that moves to change history by calling the Persian Gulf by other names is prevented, said the president of the Iranology Foundation, Dr. Hassan Habibi, in a conference of world Iranologists, the second of its kind held in the country.

The National Geographic Society, in the eighth edition of its atlas, used the name 'Arabian Gulf' to refer to the waters off the southern coast of Iran. This is "illegal and unacceptable," said Habibi.

The society is the publisher of the prestigious National Geographic magazine.

The society's use of dubious names for the Iranian islands of Greater and Lesser Tunbs and Abu Mussa are also uncondonable, he said.

In the conference, Majlis Speaker Gholam-Ali Haddad Adel pointed to Iran's undeniable prestige in world history if one were to "study Iran's place in history free from bias and pre-judgment."

"Today, the geographical mass that is Iran occupies a superior location and is a crossroads between East and West. In Iran human's cultures and civilizations meet."

The four-day second Iranology conference concluded its work here Thursday.

photo: ISNA

Over 1,000 domestic and foreign experts attended the conference.

Articles and speeches in the fields of Persian literature, economy, archaeology, history, geography, politics, language, philosophy, management and arts were presented during the conference.

The conference was aimed at establishing more effective relations between experts and researchers of Iranology and to introduce them to latest studies and achievements in those fields.

Iran has vowed to follow up through legal channels the distortion of the Persian Gulf's name since it is rooted in history and recognized internationally to refer to the waters off Iran's southern coast.

In the aftermath of the distortion, the Islamic Guidance and Culture Ministry banned the magazine as well as its reporters from further operating in the country.

National Geographic magazine's website has reportedly been flooded with strong letters from the Iranian diaspora, particularly those in the United States, objecting to the change in name.

According to news reports, they have demanded that the organization correct its mistake.

... Payvand News - 12/24/04 ... --

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