Iran General NewsUS renews Iran travel warning

US renews Iran travel warning

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AFP: The US government on Thursday renewed a warning against travel to Iran, saying anti-US hostility had increased the threat of kidnapping. But a State Department official said the warning was not linked to growing controversy over the past of Iran’s president-elect, Mahmood Ahmadinejad, who has been accused of taking part in the 1979 hostage taking at the US embassy in Tehran. AFP

WASHINGTON – The US government on Thursday renewed a warning against travel to Iran, saying anti-US hostility had increased the threat of kidnapping.

But a State Department official said the warning was not linked to growing controversy over the past of Iran’s president-elect, Mahmood Ahmadinejad, who has been accused of taking part in the 1979 hostage taking at the US embassy in Tehran.

“Due to ongoing tensions, particularly along the border with Iraq, US citizens may be at risk of harassment or kidnapping,” said the State Department warning.

“Tensions generated by the current situation in Iraq have increased the potential threat to US citizens and interests abroad posed by those who oppose US policy.

“Some elements of the Iranian government and population remain hostile to the US. American citizens may be subject to harassment or kidnapping.

“Some areas of the country, including the Baluchistan border area near Pakistan and Afghanistan, the Kurdish northwest of the country and areas near the Iraqi border, are not considered safe.”

The United States does not have diplomatic relations with Iran.

Washington has led international opposition to Iran’s suspect nuclear programme. Tensions between the two have been highlighted by Ahmadinejad’s election victory.

Five survivors of the 444-day siege of the US embassy in Tehran have said they remembered seeing Ahmadinejad. Iranians who took part in the siege have denied that he took part, however.

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