Tehran and Iran are celebrating 30 years of the Islamic republic, with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad taking the opportunity to respond to the recent tentative overtures of change coming from the United States. The central Azadi square was filled with people and state television showed pictures of similar demonstrations throughout the country.
Ahmadinejad did not exactly unclench his fist to reach out to President Obama’s hand, but said Iran would welcome a change in approach if it was fundamental, and not just tactical. The Iranian nation was ready to hold talks in a fair atmosphere with mutual respect and it would welcome real changes, he added. However there were still plenty of “Death to America,” and “Death to Israel” banners in the crowd.