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Tehran (also spelled Teheran) (تهران in Persian), population 11,050,000, is the capital of Iran. More than half of the country's industry is based there. Industries include electrical equipment, textiles, sugar, cement, and motor vehicle assembly. It is also a leading center for the sale of carpets. There is an oil refinery nearby.
In the 13th century, following the destruction of the city of Rages by Mongols, many of its inhabitants fled to Tehran. The city served as a residence of the Safavid rulers in the 17th century, and became the capital of Persia in 1788. During World War II, British and Soviet troops entered the city. Tehran was the site of the Teheran Conference in 1943, attended by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and Premier Joseph Stalin.
The Peacock Throne of the Persian Shahs can be found in Tehran's Gulistan Square. Tehran is the site of the most important universities in Iran, and most specifically Sharif University of Technology, University of Tehran, and Amir-Kabir University of Technology. It also contains a college of fine arts, a military academy, and several religious schools. Tehran is also home to the Tehran Stock Exchange. The TSE is a full member the FIBV a founding member of the Federation of Euro-Asian Stock Exchanges.
In 2001 a metro system that had been in planning since the 1970s opened the first two of seven envisaged lines. The metro system had been planned since the 1970s but was interrupted by Islamic Revolution and the war with Iraq. Problems arising from the late completion of the metro led to buses taking on the role of the metro lines, serving mainly long distance routes. Taxis filled the void for localised routes, not carrying passengers to their final destinations but operating routes along main routes and atteries. This has all led to extreme congestion within the city.
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