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Iran plane crash: Britain condemns Tehran's arrest of UK ambassador

January 13, 2020 6:44 am

Britain has condemned the arrest of the UK ambassador to Iran as a “flagrant violation of international law”.

Rob Macaire was detained for a short time on Saturday night after attending a vigil for those who died when Iran’s military shot down a passenger plane.

He left the vigil when it turned into a protest but was later accused of helping to organise the demonstrations.

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Iran said he was “an unknown foreigner in an illegal gathering” and summoned him to the foreign ministry on Sunday.

In a statement, Iran’s foreign ministry said Mr Macaire was “reminded” that his presence at “illegal gatherings contravened” the Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations.

BBC diplomatic correspondent James Landale said Mr Macaire was understood to have protested strongly that his detention was unjustified.

Our correspondent says Mr Macaire made clear any suggestion that he was involved in demonstrations was completely untrue, and he was attending an event advertised as a vigil for the victims of Wednesday’s crash – which killed 176 people, including four Britons.

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