NewsSpecial WireStatement by Blair on sailors' release from Iran

Statement by Blair on sailors’ release from Iran

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Iran Focus: London, Apr. 05 – The following is the text of a statement on Wednesday by British Prime Minister Tony Blair on the release of 15 British marines and sailors who had been arrested by Iranian forces nearly two weeks ago: Iran Focus

London, Apr. 05 – The following is the text of a statement on Wednesday by British Prime Minister Tony Blair on the release of 15 British marines and sailors who had been arrested by Iranian forces nearly two weeks ago:

I am glad that our 15 service personnel have been released. I know their release will come as a profound relief, not just to them but to their families that have endured such distress and anxiety over these past 12 days.

Throughout we have taken a measured approach, firm but calm, not negotiating, but not confronting either. I would like to thank our allies in Europe, our allies in the United Nations Security Council, for their support and also our friends and allies in the region who played their part. We are grateful to all of them as we are to the officials in the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defence and here in Downing Street for the work that they have done.

And to the Iranian people I would simply say this, we bear you no ill will. On the contrary, we respect Iran as an ancient civilisation, as a nation with a proud and dignified history and the disagreements that we have with your government we wish to resolve peacefully, through dialogue. I hope, as I have always hoped, that in the future we are able to do so.

That is all that I have got to say for this evening. Thank you very much indeed.

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