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Country Profiles. 1972 Oct; 19.The estimated population of Iran in 1972 was 31,000,000, with an estimated rate of natural increase of 3.2% per year. In 1966 61% of the population lived in rural areas, male literacy was 41% and female literacy 18%. Coitus interruptus is the most common form of contraception used in Iran, followed by condoms. Because of the rapid rate of population growth, the government has taken a strong stand in support of family planning. The Ministry of Health coordinates family planning activities through the Family Planning Division. Contraceptive supplies are delivered free of charge through clinics. The national family planning program also is involved in postpartum programs, training of auxiliary personnel, communication and motivation for family planning population education, evaluation and research. The overall goal of the program is to reduce the growth rate of 2.4% by 1978, and to 1% by 1990.