Iranians Protest Outside US Embassy on Anniversary of American Hostage Seizure
(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Monday marked the 34th anniversary of the day that Iranian students stormed the United States embassy and took 52 Americans hostage. Thousands of Iranians took to the streets in their annual protest, burning flags and chanting "death to America." ABC News' Muhammad Lila in Iran was given unprecedented access inside the former embassy compound.
Lila reports that the equipment inside the embassy has been preserved from 1979. "You'll see all the paper shredders that were used to shred documents before the Iranians stormed in. There are photos on the wall trying to convinced visitors that the hostages were treated humanely," Lila said. "The most interesting thing I found anyway was there's a glass room. This is a room made entirely out of glass. And the Iranians say the CIA was using that glass room as a way to prevent anyone from eavesdropping on conversations."
Lila also reports that the former embassy houses murals, some of which "are about conspiracy theories that many Iranians hold to this day, saying that 9/11 for example was orchestrated by the United States as a way for them to take over the world."
According to Lila, going forward, Iranians are not optimistic about talks with the U.S. on Iran's nuclear program.
"If you're looking for better ties with the United States, the former U.S. embassy compound is not the place to find it. We didn't find a single person inside who wanted better relations with the United States. They all felt the same," Lila said. "They said we've extended our hand, we don't expect the United States to reciprocate. And they cited a lengthy list of grievances. Some even mentioned Edward Snowden. And they said listen Snowden proved that America hasn't changed, America is still spying not only on its enemies but on its friends."
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