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Archive for Iran

Newsline: Albania, host of Iranian dissident camp, expels two Iranian diplomats

Albania, which hosts a camp for thousands of members of an exiled Iranian dissident group, expelled two Iranian diplomats , more than a year after kicking out the Iranian ambassador. Acting Foreign Minister Gent Cakaj identified the diplomats in a statement on social media as Mohammad Ali Arz Peimanemati and Seyed Ahmad Hosseini Alast. They were expelled for activity incompatible with their diplomatic status, a phrase often used in cases of spying. “The two representatives of the Islamic Republic of Iran have been asked to depart immediately from the territory of the Republic of Albania,” Cakaj said. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-albania-iran-expulsion/albania-host-of-iranian-dissident-camp-expels-two-iranian-diplomats-idUSKBN1ZE27X) In December 2018, Albania expelled Iran’s ambassador and another diplomat for “damaging its national security”. Iran said at the time Albania had acted under pressure from Israel and the United States.

Newsline: Foreign Minister apologizes for Ukrainian embassy’s actions in Iran

Foreign Minister of Ukraine Vadym Prystaiko has apologized for the mistake made by the Embassy of Ukraine in Iran soon after the crash of PS752 flight of Ukraine International Airlines (UIA). (https://www.kyivpost.com/ukraine-politics/prystaiko-apologizes-for-ukrainian-embassys-actions-in-iran.html) “As a minister of foreign affairs, I am apologizing for the embassy’s actions. It was their first response in a state of shock which our embassy [employees] experienced having arrived on the site where our people had died, where there were the fragments of the plane, the remains of deceased and so on. The embassy made a slight mistake by issuing the information, which they had received from the Iranian side, without mentioning that it was given by Iran,” he said while speaking at the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine during an hour of questions to the government on Jan. 17.

Newsline: Ukraine admits diplomats’ mistake, explaining embassy’s edited report

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs admits that the Ukrainian Embassy in Iran made a mistake in its initial report about the plane crash near Tehran, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Andriy Zayats told journalists Monday. In the first hours after the UIA flight PS752 crashed shortly after takeoff, the embassy issued a statement claiming that the plane went down as a result of engine failure, adding that the version of terrorist attack and a missile hit were “ruled out.” However, the statement was edited shortly. (Read more on UNIAN: https://www.unian.info/politics/10828490-mfa-ukraine-admits-diplomats-mistake-explaining-embassy-s-edited-report.html) The paragraph ruling out a terror attack and a missile hit has been cut out. Instead, the updated report said: “Information on the causes of the plane crash is being verified by the commission. Any statements regarding the causes of the accident prior to the decision of the commission are unofficial.”

Newsline: UK keeping security of Tehran embassy under review

Britain is keeping the security of its embassy in Tehran under review after Iran briefly arrested London’s envoy to the country, foreign minister Dominic Raab said on Monday. “Given the treatment of the ambassador we are keeping the security measures for the embassy under review,” Raab said in parliament, describing the arrest as a flagrant violation of international law. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-crash-britain-security/uk-keeping-security-of-tehran-embassy-under-review-raab-idUSKBN1ZC1OI) Raab also said transatlantic unity over Iran was important so that the country received the same messages from Britain, Europe and the United States.

Newsline: UK and Germany condemn arrest of Britain’s Tehran ambassador

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and German Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned the arrest of Britain’s ambassador to Tehran, a spokesman from Johnson’s office said in a statement issued after the two leaders spoke on Sunday. “On Iran, they discussed the tragic loss of life on the Ukraine International Airlines passenger jet. They condemned Iran’s arrest of the UK Ambassador to Tehran as a violation of international law,” the spokesman said. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-crash-britain-germany/uk-and-germany-condemn-arrest-of-britains-tehran-ambassador-uk-pms-office-idUSKBN1ZB0G1) “The leaders also discussed our shared interests in ensuring Iran never acquires a nuclear weapon, and reaffirmed their continued commitment to preserving the JCPOA (Iran nuclear deal).”

Newsline: Hardline militia rallies at UK embassy in Iran, demands closure

Iran’s hardline Basij militia staged a demonstration outside Britain’s embassy in Tehran on Sunday demanding that it be closed, Iranian state media reported. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-iran-crash-britain-militia/hardline-militia-rallies-at-uk-embassy-in-iran-demands-closure-report-idUSKBN1ZB0DD) The rally by the Basij, affiliated to Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards, followed the brief detention of Britain’s ambassador to Iran during protests after the Iranian military admitted to mistakenly bringing down a civilian airliner in Iran.

Newsline: U.K. Says Iran Detained Ambassador as Protests Hit Tehran

The U.K. ambassador to Iran was “briefly detained” by Iranian authorities on Saturday, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said. Ambassador Rob Macaire was arrested and held for three hours after attending a vigil for the victims of the Tehran plane crash which turned into demonstration, the Telegraph reported. “The arrest of our Ambassador in Tehran without grounds or explanation is a flagrant violation of international law,” Raab said in a statement. (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-01-11/u-k-says-iran-detained-its-ambassador-as-protests-hit-tehran) U.S. State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said the action was a violation of the Vienna Convention, which ensures immunity and privileges for foreign diplomats. The event which Macaire attended had been advertised as a vigil at Amir Kabir University for the 176 victims of the Tehran plane crash last week, according to the Telegraph. He and another member of the embassy staff left once the vigil turned into a protest. Iran’s foreign ministry said on Sunday it summoned Macaire for his “unconventional conduct and presence in illegal gatherings.” It didn’t provide more details.