Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 June 2019

Iran mulls dumping Tehran as nation’s capital

Iranian parliament considers proposal to select another city as the nation’s capital, moving the seat of government from Tehran.
Tehran in December, 2010, when heavy air pollution forced Iranian authorities to close government offices and declare a two-day public holiday. Vahid Salemi / AP
Tehran in December, 2010, when heavy air pollution forced Iranian authorities to close government offices and declare a two-day public holiday. Vahid Salemi / AP

TEHRAN // The Iranian parliament is considering a proposal to pick another city as the nation’s capital and move the seat of the government from Tehran.

The high risk of earthquakes, overcrowding and pollution are some of the reasons to prompt the latest discussion.

Iran’s official news agency IRNA said yesterday that if MPs accept the proposal, a council would be set up and spend the next two years studying which location would be best.

There was no indication in the proposal which locations could be considered but Iranian seismologist, Bahram Akasheh, has for years suggested that the capital be moved to Isfahan, south of Tehran.

Tehrain lies on at least 100 known fault lines and experts warn that a big quake would be disastrous..

Mr Akasheh has predicted that 720,000 people would be killed if Tehran were to be struck by a tremor of similar magnitude to that in Bam in 2003.

The greater Tehran area has a population of 12 million and suffers from a many urban problems such as heavy pollution, traffic jams and a high crime rate.

Its residents have tripled in number over the past decade as more and more Iranians moved into the city in search of jobs and a better life.

Associated Press

Updated: December 24, 2013 04:00 AM

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