If you're in Iran and playing World of Warcraft, you're out of luck. In order to comply with U.S. trade sanctions against the Middle Eastern nation, Blizzard has cut off World of Warcraft completely in Iran. The trade sanctions even prohibit Blizzard from refunding players or letting them transfer their accounts.
Here's how Blizzard explained the ban on its message board:
Blizzard has said it plans to lift the restriction as soon as U.S. law allows them to.
As for what will become of the characters of Iranian gamers, I'm assuming that Blizzard will hold onto them in the hopes that the restrictions will be lifted, but I've contacted the company to see if this is the case. I'll let you know when they provide me with more information.
Interestingly, some middle eastern gamers are reporting being unable to connect to Battle.net due to interference from their own government. Blizzard said it had no information about Iranian government action against online games.
The sanctions also reportedly apply to Syria, although Blizzard hasn't said yet.