A recreational vehicle emblazoned with the large-lettered slogan “Iran is great” sparked a security alert in London earlier this week when it was seen parked near the city’s Science Museum.
British media reported that the RV belonged to a German-based family which drives their vehicle around Europe to promote improved relations with Iran.
Cristian Ivan, a Romanian, and his wife Audrey, who is French, homeschool their children and were in the U.K. both for a homeschooling festival and to take their children to museums to further their education, the BBC reported.
According to British media, the unusual sight sparked concerned citizens to call in counterterrorism police, firefighters and ambulances. The Science Museum was evacuated and shut for two hours as were the roads leading up to the area.
"Apparently there were announcements in the Science Museum asking for the owner of the van with German number plates to get in touch but we didn't hear them because we were next door in the Natural History Museum,” Ivan told the BBC. “My son Lucas is 8. He loves dinosaurs and had chosen to visit the Natural History Museum first."
"When we came back to the van I saw the windows had been smashed. I wondered who could have done it, but then I was told it was the police," he said.
"I do respect the law and I was not aware I could not park there. They could have given me a ticket or clamped me but because of the writing they treated the van as if it was suspicious," he added.
The Times of London reported that Ivan "fell in love with Iran" when he visited in 2010.
London’s Metropolitan Police did not provide a comment on the incident to the British media.