Iran's population now exceeds 75 million, according to the Iran Census Organization.
ISNA reports that on March 21, the last day of the year on the Iranian calendar, the running meter on the Census website indicated the population had surpassed the 75-million benchmark by 50 thousand people. Last year at the same time the meter was at 74 million.
In the past year, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has repeatedly called for an increase in family size and described population control as an idea propagated by "enemies" and "colonialists."
Last December, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said: "The 'two babies are enough' model destroys nations. With only two children, what would happen to us? The same thing that is happening in Europe."
The president dismissed the idea that a low population leads to a higher living standard. "The motto that two children are enough belongs to the Western liberal-humanist system," he said, "which contends that a child is an impediment to enjoying life."
Despite Ahmadinejad's statement, Iran's Expediency Council has emphasized that population-control polices should by no means be abandoned. The council rejected the notion that increasing the population is a logical way to confront the country's problems.
Population-control policies were established in 1959 with the founding of the Society of Family Well-being; however, in the past 50 years, Iran's population has quadrupled. Those policies were completely eradicated after the 1979 Revolution, and the population surged in the mid-eighties and early nineties.
The reform government established new population-control policies, but they have been effectively countered since Ahmadinejad came to power in 2005.
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