Assyrians in Iran, Iranian Assyrians or Persian Assyrians (Syriac: ܐܬܘܪܝܐ ܕܐܝܼܪܵܢ), (Persian: آشوریان ایران), are an ethnic and linguistic minority in present-day Iran. The Assyrians of Iran speak Assyrian Neo-Aramaic, a neo-Aramaic language descended from Classical Syriac and elements of Akkadian, and are Eastern Rite Christians belonging mostly to the Assyrian Church of the East and also to the Ancient Church of the East, Assyrian Pentecostal Church, Chaldean Catholic Church and Assyrian Evangelical Church. They share a common history and ethnic identity, rooted in shared linguistic, cultural and religious traditions, with Assyrians in Iraq, Assyrians in Turkey and Assyrians in Syria, as well as with the Assyrian diaspora. The Assyrian community in Iran numbered approximately 200,000 prior to the Islamic Revolution of 1979. However, after the revolution many Assyrians left the country, primarily for the United States; the 1996 Iranian census counted only 32,000 Assyrians. Current estimates of the Assyrian population in Iran range from 32,000 (as of 2005[update]) to 50,000 (as of 2007[update]). The Iranian capital, Tehran, is home to the majority of Iranian Assyrians; however, approximately 15,000 Assyrians reside in northern Iran, in Urmia and various Assyrian villages in the surrounding area. The Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, ratified in 1979, recognizes Assyrians as a religious minority and ethnic minority and reserves for them one seat in the Islamic Consultative Assembly, the Iranian parliament. As of 2004[update], the seat was occupied by Yonathan Betkolia, who was elected in 2000 and reelected in the 2004 legislative election. Today, scholars estimate that there are only around 5,000 Assyrians left in the historical center of the city of Urmia.