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Obama encourages Iranian protesters

February 15, 2011

President Barack Obama makes a statement during a news conference on the White House complex in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2011. – AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

WASHINGTON: US President Barack Obama offered encouragement to protesters in Iran Tuesday, saying he hoped they would have the “courage” to continue expressing their “yearning for greater freedoms.”

Obama said that, unlike in Egypt, Iran's response to protests has been “to shoot people and beat people and arrest people.”

“And, you know, my hope and expectation is that we're going to continue to see the people of Iran have the courage to be able to express their yearning for greater freedoms and a more representative government,” he said.