To be aware of in Iran

This item appears on page 18 of the March 2008 issue.

Some elements of the Iranian regime and the population remain hostile to the United States. As a result, American citizens may be subject to harassment or arrest while traveling or residing in Iran.

The Department of State continues to warn dual-national Iranian-American citizens that they may encounter difficulty in departing Iran. Former Muslims who have converted to other religions as well as persons who encourage Muslims to convert are subject to arrest and prosecution.

The Iranian regime continues to repress its minority religious and ethnic groups, including Bahai, Arabs, Kurds, Azeris and others. Consequently, some areas within the country where these minorities reside, including the Baluchistan border area near Pakistan and Afghanistan, the Kurdish northwest of the country and areas near the Iraqi border, remain unsafe. Armed attacks on the road between Bam and Kerman in May 2007 render this area unsafe also.

Large-scale demonstrations have taken place in various regions throughout Iran over the past several years as a result of a sometimes-volatile political climate.