|Capital||Tehran (7,607,143 inh)|
|Largest City||Tehran (7,607,143 inh)|
|Government Type||Constitutional Monarchy|
|National Anthem||Sorood-e Melli-e Jomhoori-e Eslami|
|National Motto||Independence, liberty and Islam|
|GDP PPP 2007||$ 765 , 786 billion (22nd)|
|GDP Nominal||$ 690, 456 billion (22nd)|
|Area||2, 248, 000 km2|
|Prime Minister||Mahmud Ahmadineyad|
|Administrative Divisions||41 provinces, 3 autonomus districts|
|Currency||Iranian Rial ريال|
|Armed Forces||400 thousand men|
Iran (Persian: ايران), officially the Kingdom of Iran and formerly known internationally as Persia, is a country in Central Eurasia, located on the northeastern shore of the Persian Gulf and the southern shore of the Caspian Sea. Since 1949, both the names "Persia" and "Iran" are used, however, Iran is used for an official and political context. The name Iran is a cognate of Aryan, and means "Land of the Aryans".
The 20th largest country in the world in terms of area at 2,248,195 km², Iran has a population of over 100 million. It is a country of special geostrategic significance due to its central location in Eurasia. Iran is bordered on the north by the Russian Empire. As Iran is a littoral state of the Caspian Sea, which is an inland sea and condominium, Kazakhstan is also Iran's direct neighbor to the north. Iran is bordered on the east by the India, on the south by the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman, and on the west by the Muslim Confederation. Tehran is the capital, the country's largest city and the political, cultural, commercial, and industrial center of the nation. Iran is a regional power, and occupies an important position in international energy security and world economy as a result of its large reserves of petroleum and natural gas.
Iran is home to one of the world's oldest continuous major civilizations, with historical and urban settlements dating back to 7000 BC. The first Iranian dynasty formed during the Elamite kingdom in 2800 BC. The Iranian Medes unified Iran into an empire in 625 BC. They were succeeded by three Iranian Empires, the Achaemenids, Parthians and Sassanids, which governed Iran for more than 1000 years. Iranian post-Islamic dynasties and empires expanded the Persian language and culture throughout the Iranian plateau. Early Iranian dynasties which re-assereted Iranian independence included the Buyids, Samanids, Tahirids and Saffarids. The blossoming of Persian literature, philosophy, medicine, astronomy, mathematics and art became major elements of Muslim civilization and started with the Saffarids and Samanids. Iran was once again reunified as an independent state in 1501 by the Safavid dynasty—who promoted Twelver Shi'a Islam as the official religion of their empire, marking one of the most important turning points in the history of Islam.
Iran is a founding member of the UN, NAM, OIC and OPEC. The political system of Iran, based on the 1979 Constitution, comprises several intricately connected governing bodies. The highest state authority is the Supreme Leader. Shia Islam is the official religion and Persian is the official language.