Iran General NewsIran protesters storm British embassy

Iran protesters storm British embassy

-

AFP: Iranian protesters stormed the British embassy and another British diplomatic compound in Tehran on Tuesday, dramatically raising tensions with the West in a confrontation over the Islamic republic’s controversial nuclear programme.

TEHRAN (AFP) — Iranian protesters stormed the British embassy and another British diplomatic compound in Tehran on Tuesday, dramatically raising tensions with the West in a confrontation over the Islamic republic’s controversial nuclear programme.

More than 20 protesters clambered over the walls of the embassy in the centre of the capital, ransacking offices, smashing windows and tearing down the British flag before Iranian police entered and stopped them, an AFP journalist at the scene reported.

In the second British diplomatic compound, in Tehran’s north, between 100 and 300 protesters burst in and occupied the property, which houses schools and residences, according to Iranian media.

The situation there was not immediately clear. The state news agency IRNA said the protesters had foreigners there in their control — that they were described as “protecting.”

An official in the British embassy told AFP all British diplomatic staff were safe and accounted for.

The British Foreign Office expressed outrage at the incursion into its embassy, saying it was “utterly unacceptable and we condemn it”.

It urged all Britons in Iran “to stay inside and keep a low profile.”

Iranian police, after initially doing little to stop the protesters, were dispersing a crowd in front of the embassy late Tuesday.

Earlier, the crowd had chanted “Death to Britain” and demanded the British ambassador leave the country immediately in reaction to fresh sanctions London unveiled last week against Iran’s entire financial sector.

Protesters inside the embassy grounds were shown live on Iranian state television throwing stones at windows, breaking them, and one was seen climbing the wall with a looted portrait of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II. Others threw embassy papers into the air.

At the northern compound, IRNA reported that protesters had carried off “classified and espionage documents” and also replaced the British flag there with the Iranian flag.

The scenes — which recalled the 1979 storming of the US embassy that led to the rupture of US-Iranian diplomatic ties — seriously added to an intensifying showdown between Iran and Western nations.

Iran on Monday passed a law to kick out Britain’s ambassador within the next two weeks and reduce diplomatic relations to the level of charge d’affaires because of the new sanctions.

Britain has said it will act “robustly” if Iran’s foreign ministry complies.

Its sanctions were announced in conjunction with the United States and Canada.

EU foreign ministers on Thursday are expected to reveal new sanctions against Iran.

The European Union and the United States said Monday they were considering extra measures to pressure Iran on its nuclear activities.

The United States and its allies suspect Iran is seeking to build an atomic arsenal — a fear crystallised in a report by the UN nuclear watchdog this month that strongly suggested Tehran had researched nuclear warheads.

Israel, which views Iran as its biggest threat in the Middle East, is considering air strikes on Iranian nuclear facilities, according to recent Israeli media reports.

Iran has repeatedly denied its nuclear programme is anything but for peaceful, civilian purposes. It has warned it would respond to any attack by raining missiles on Israel and Turkey.

Iran is already subject to four sets of UN sanctions designed to pressure it to halt its uranium enrichment activities, as well as the unilateral Western sanctions.

Latest news

Iran’s Unsolvable Air Pollution Problem

Air pollution will remain at dangerous levels and will increase for the next few days in most big cities,...

The World Must Acknowledge the Iranian People’s Right to Self-defense

Victor Hugo once said: “When dictatorship is a fact, revolution becomes a right.” Throughout history, this has been the...

Iran: 60% Of Population Is Poor

The livelihood baskets of the Iranian people are shrinking dramatically. This, in turn, has introduced new concerns to protect...

The implications of EU’s terrorist designation of the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC)

The European Parliament called on January 18 for the European Union to list Iran's Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) as a...

Iran’s Regime Is Hiding Human Rights Violations In Its Prisons

With more than four months into Iran’s latest round of nationwide uprisings, the brutality of the Iranian regime’s security...

How Internet Censorship Is Damaging Iran’s Economy

While in the last four months, internet access in Iran has been cut off or severely limited, the regime’s...

Must read

U.S. Says Iran Thumbs Nose at Nuke Talks

AP: Iran is "thumbing its nose" at a proposed...

Iran road deaths soar in first five months

Iran Focus: Tehran, Iran, Oct. 18 – Road accidents...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you