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Slices of life in Iran, where international tension may appear far off

AP

At schools, in shops, and on the streets of big cities and small towns, daily life plays out in Iran.

As international tension with Iran mounts over sanctions creating a chokehold on the oil-rich nation's economy, life goes on for Iranians.

U.S. lawmakers crafted Section 1245 of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2012 to reduce Iran's oil revenue as punishment for what the United States says is a program to develop a nuclear-weapon capability. Among other things, it prohibits financial institutions from dealing with Iran's central bank, which acts as the clearinghouse for OPEC's second-largest oil exporter. 

Iranian officials earlier this month bluntly warned a U.S. carrier not to return to the Gulf and have threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz, spooking oil markets and raising the specter of a U.S.-Iranian confrontation.

The West accuses Iran of developing nuclear weapons, but government officials claim the research is for peaceful purposes.

In Iranian cities, international affairs seem to go on far away as students still take music lessons, fishermen go out for their daily catches and canine lovers volunteer at local animal shelters.

These are a few of the activities shown in an msnbc.om slideshow on slices of life in Iran.