Iran is larger than thought : minister

(TEHRAN-AFP) – Iran’s total area is larger than previously thought by some 14 percent, Defence Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi was quoted by the website of state television as saying Monday.

“The actual area of Iran is 1,873,959 square kilometres (723,539 square miles),” Vahidi said, adding: “The area given so far for Iran was lower, and now this new figure should be used.”

Most international documents and atlases, especially the geography text books used in Iranian schools, give 1,648,195 square kilometres (636,371 square miles) as the area of Iran.

Vahidi, speaking at the unveiling of new mapping software designed by the Iranian military, did not explain how this sudden gain of 225,764 square kilometres (87,167 square miles) in Iranian territory was calculated.