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Tel Aviv’s ‘Iranian embassy’ turns out to be atomic hoax

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A billboard in central Tel Aviv announcing the opening of an Iranian embassy that met with disbelief and curiosity turned out to be a hoax, organisers of the eye-catching stunt have said.

“Opening here soon – Embassy of Iran in Israel,” proclaimed the five-storey tall hoarding emblazoned with the Iranian and Israeli flags this week.

Posts on Facebook suggested that the billboard could be an art installation or a private peace campaign by Israelis of Iranian descent.

But the truth was revealed as a massive publicity stunt in a statement yesterday from the makers of a new Israeli film comedy about a nuclear conflict between Tehran and the Jewish state.

“Mystery solved!” it said, announcing “the upcoming launch of (director) Dror Shaul’s new film ‘Atomic Falafel’ an atomic comedy.”

Opening locally on September 10, its producer Avraham Pirchi calls it “a satirical comedy mocking ultra-militarism.”

Israel and Iran severed diplomatic relations in the wake of the 1979 Islamic revolution which overthrew Iran’s pro-Western shah and installed a theocratic regime which did not recognise Israel.

The Jewish State vehemently opposes the nuclear deal reached in mid-July between Iran and major powers which will lead to the lifting of economic sanctions against Tehran.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes the agreement is not strict enough to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons which it could use against Israel and reserved the right to stage a pre-emptive strike if necessary.