Britain orders closure of Iran embassy in London

November 30, 2011 2:20 pm


Iranian diplomats must leave the United Kingdom within the next 48 hours/FILE
LONDON, Nov 30 – Britain has ordered the closure of the Iranian embassy in London and told all staff to leave after protesters attacked the British embassy in Tehran, Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Wednesday.

In a statement to parliament the day after the attack, Hague said Iranian diplomats “must leave the United Kingdom within the next 48 hours”.

Earlier, Prime Minister David Cameron warned Iran that Britain would take “very tough action” following the storming of its embassy in Tehran.

The Foreign Office announced on Wednesday that some embassy staff were being evacuated, although it refused to say whether it was planning to close the mission following Tuesday’s attack by an angry mob.

“That should be our number one concern – their safety, their security and making sure those are maintained,” Cameron told lawmakers in the House of Commons during his weekly question and answer session.

“After that we will consider taking some very tough action in response to this completely appalling and disgraceful behaviour by the Iranians.”

He added: “I’m sure that the whole House will join me in praising the incredible devotion of our staff in the foreign and diplomatic staff who often face great dangers as they did yesterday in Tehran.”

On Tuesday night, Cameron had said the attack was a “disgrace” and warned the Iranian government that there would be “serious consequences for failing to protect our staff”.


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