US 'virtual embassy' blocked by Iran net censor

December 7, 2011 23:07

TEHRAN - Iranian authorities blocked a website on Wednesday hours after it was launched by the US State Department to be a "virtual embassy" reaching out to people in the Islamic Republic.

"In accordance with the cyber crime law, access to this website is not possible," read a notice to anyone inside Iran trying to visit

The "Virtual Embassy Tehran" website -- which makes clear it does not offer consular services -- is an attempt by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to give Iranians a sympathetic view of the United States, which is referred to as "the Great Satan" by Tehran's ruling elite.

The United States has had no diplomatic relations with Iran since its embassy in Tehran was stormed in 1979 -- the year of the Islamic Revolution -- and its staff held hostage for 444 days.

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