FROM Reza Marashi
US Blocks Iran's UN Ambassador Nominee In 1979, young Iranians seized the US embassy in Tehran and held diplomats hostage until Ronald Reagan was elected President to replace Jimmie Carter. Hamid Aboutalebi was allegedly involved. Now, he's Iran's nominee as Ambassador to the United Nations, but the US has refused to grant him a visa. Aboutalebi says he was only a translator for the hostage takers. In the meantime, he's become a senior diplomat, whose posts have included Ambassador to the EU. Both houses of Congress have voted to bar his entry, and the White House says he won't be granted a visa. Reza Marashi is research director for the National Iranian American Council, formerly with the State Department's Office of Iranian Affairs.
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